Resentment

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When you awake the first though is_______; if negative, bringing sadness like slippers scuffed about in all day? A sense of being treated badly last week or always has roots requiring bulldozer power to remove, especially where family is the source of resentment.
The word resentment comes from the Latin word “sentire” which means, “to feel”, and when you put “re” in front of any word, it means “again”, so the word resent means “to feel again”. It includes people, institutions or principles with which we were angry, with whom we were hurt or threatened or interfered with, with whom we felt had wronged us, with whom we stayed sore at, with whom we felt “burned up” toward, and with whom we held a grudge. Worn out shoes should be thrown away, tying each pair to sling around neck is pretty dumb; it’s what we do if we resent.
Let’s say it is your Mother or Father who is at the core of these feelings and you are twenty-five. Will the resentment be alive at thirty-five or forty-five? Why let someone live rent-free in your mind; why?
I offer a solution; ask God to remove them. Yeah right, just like handing a steak knife to a three year old, you might think. That is the resentment thinking for you; it does not want to go and will leave claw-marks when it does. For two solid weeks, every time those slippers slid on to your feet ask Him. Do not miss a day. The results are breathtaking.

THE SECRET PLACE

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Pray in a secret place that only you know of its location, no one else. In your undisclosed site, unseen, communicate with God. Psalm ninety-one, verse one: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty“. His majesty surrounds, His glory glimpsed through our eyes, the gateway to our soul.

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SURRENDER TO WIN

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I took my first drink at age 6 and never stopped until age 36. Every member of my immediate family was alcoholic. Baptized Roman Catholic and groomed for the Priesthood, a dream of my Father, attending private school is a must.

We were dirt poor living in a shack on the bank of Lake Erie. Mother worked as a maid and Dad a laborer, spending money for gallons of port wine and cases of beer left little for essentials. Shabbily dressed, devoid of social skills and physically small I am in a school with the children of Doctors and Lawyers; wealth surrounding this little drunk. Constant ridicule and rejection is the norm. Emotional pain is treated with port wine which disallows development.

God found this twisted, sick little lamb in 1978 and the process of becoming sober begins. Emotional hardness, also know as maturity, took years to develop. In 2004 I became a Southern Baptist and was saved by Jesus. The Holy Spirit endowed strength and tenacity on that remarkable day of Baptism.

I never gave up although hardships continue; God gifting this ex-drunk the strength of acceptance via surrender, to walk the path given. One must first surrender to HIS will to win. Which begs the question; if I do what is won?

The strength to decide not to give up when times are rough is the prize. A mystery wrapped in an enigma; understood through faith in Christ Jesus.

Emotional pain spins on weaver’s wheel creating yarn years long; another spins on a separate wheel. The weft of pain alternating stitches with welt of acceptance are woven into a cloak; the prize. Dew on Web is an expression of this passage.

                  

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                                                            Dew on Web

Sweet dew drop on spider’s web slinks so slowly
Sliding on slippery satin’s path to multiple junctions
Then divides just glides on its way to tiny splash, at last
It takes so long, we think
Our timelines stretched
Such arrogance that we profess
To think mere man controls its quest
Light sees the drop of Heavens wealth
Reflects, refracts a rainbows worth
All man’s jewels possessed by few
Can not compare to simple dew
The wisdom whistles in the wind
Never going, always been
You have to listen with your heart
The little spider was the start
 It kills to eat entangled meat
We can not win without defeat
There is no beauty to be possessed
Unless first pain and then the rest
Sorrow precedes the deity’s feat
Dew drop dew drop oh so sweet

D. Edwin Burbee

WHY I LOVE FISHING

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   The end of the fishing pier, one quarter mile in length, is my choice.  That is if another fisherman hasn’t beaten me to it; such is not the case this Tuesday evening.
Parking the cart I prepare a rig, bait and throw. A warm breeze accompanies a stargazing night. Soon a copper moon will rise out of the East like a large penny creating a silent symphonic panorama. The taunt line, passing through the top eye, is a poetic sight enchanting me since seven years of age. If I catch nothing the tranquility is enough.

Several bluefish later a young man parks a few yards to my left and begins fishing. I nod to his presence and he nods back. Twenty odd minutes pass and he catches a flounder. “Nice fish” I tell him. “Thank you sir” he replies. This is the South where kids are raised to address another man as sir. Being called “sir” took some getting used too. “Can I borrow your tape”? “Absolutely” I answered, and tossed him the tape measure.

This is the year that the keeper length for flounder changed several times and settled at fifteen inches. “How long is it, “I inquired? His reply stunned me. “It’s fourteen inches, three lines and a little bit”. “I don’t mean to embarrass you but you can not read a tape measure”? “No, never learned” he answered. “Are you a high school grad” I asked. “Yes I am”. How is it possible that a high school graduate does not grasp fractions and decimals, I ask myself. Being a retired teacher causes me to wonder what on Earth is going on in our classrooms. “If your willing I can teach you now; won’t take long”. “Yes, I would” he responded.

So with a small notebook and pencil, a dried bait pier railing as a desk, class is in session. Beginning with converting fractions to decimals the young man learns quickly, putting to rest the idea that he is not capable. “Wait a minute, I think I understand, .0625 is one thirty-second, .125 is an eight of an inch and .250 a quarter inch…Hey I can read a tape”! I can’t thank you enough and I better put that fish back”.

“Where did you get your love of fishing“, I inquired. The lad replied, “From my Grandfather”. “Where is your Grandfather from”? “He’s from Manitoba”.
“Oh he’s Canadian”? He furrowed his brows and asked, “Isn’t that in North Dakota”? I thought to myself, “My job here is not complete”.
“Next time, if there is one, the subject will be geography because Manitoba is a Province in Canada”. Tossing me my tape measure he smiled and said, “I hope there will be one”.

One must remain open to learn but more importantly to teach. Rather than ridicule the ignorant, impart your knowledge to those willing to learn.