Rabid Fun

John Cowart's Daily Journal: A befuddled ordinary Christian looks for spiritual realities in day to day living.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A Divider Of Stuff

Note: Donald posted photos of our family gatheringSunday here.

Jesus is smarter than I am.

Once when He was teaching, a man in the crowd yelled, “Master, speak to my brother that he divide the inheritance with me”

Jesus replied, “Who made me a judge or a divider over you”.

In other words, Jesus knew better than to get caught in the middle as people bickered over property. He refused to get involved. “For a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesses,” He said.

This passage of Scripture came to mind when my daughter called Monday afternoon asking me to go with her to load her possessions. Jennifer and Pat split up last week. Bitterness, rancor, and pain seem to exist on both sides as you might expect when a couple breaks up after 12 years together.

On the good side: Jennifer’s spinal operation, scheduled for tomorrow, has been postponed for a couple of months.

I’m relieved.

On the other side: Jennifer had talked with two counselors in the morning and they advised her to remove her stuff from the home as soon as possible and, since Jennifer says a gun is involved and she felt threatened, they advised her to ask a policeman to go with her when she picked up her stuff.

She rented a U-Haul trailer and hooked it to her car. Then she called me to go with her to help load the stuff “To divide the inheritance”.

I had 20 minutes to prepare.

Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

Here goes good ‘ol dad, right into the middle of the division.

As we drove over there, I envisioned myself being gunned down in a hail of bullets, caught in a crossfire between cops, disgruntled lovers, and irate neighbors — What does any of this have to do with me?, I wondered.

Two police cars, with Officers Davis and Rothweiler, escorted us to the house. When Pat came to the door, the officers explained why we were there. Pat’s son, his wife, and their baby came over to be there during this ordeal. Pat had already packed most of Jennifer’s stuff in the garage, so I loaded boxes with plenty of supervision.

Department policy prohibits the police from moving stuff during these domestic disputes; they need to keep their hands free. Jennifer’s cripple arm keep her from lifting anything. No one else had a vested interest in the process.

I felt as though I were walking on eggs as I loaded boxes alone while seven people watched my every move.

But I got it done.

I hate to see people in pain. And there was so much pain and anguish and so many emotional entanglements in this can of worms.

When I finished loading the trailer, Pat hugged me and sobbed on my shoulder.

When we got away, Jennifer hugged me and sobbed on my shoulder.

No wonder Jesus did not want to be a divider of stuff.

He’s smarter than I am.

I had urged Jennifer to just forget her stuff, to treat the breakup as though she’d suffered a house fire and lost everything. To just walk away and leave it all. You can always buy more stuff.

But she worried over Christmas ornaments, medicines, toys from her childhood, stuff, possessions. And although she said she feared a major confrontation, meltdown, and maybe even getting shot, she still wanted this stuff.

Lord, the things we do for stuff!

The two police officers told me they go through these domestic dispute calls all the time, so they were the coolest customers on the site… These guys deserve a raise.

A Big Raise.

Even though it all went smoothly as such things go, I’d never want to go through such a thing again. Ever!

Maybe I should write an Advice To The Lovelorn column.

Here’s my advice — You two work this out and leave me the hell out of it!

When there’s an opening on the Jerry Springer Show, I am available.

No sooner had I arrived back home than Dan Scanlan, a well known reporter for the Florida Times-Union newspaper, called to interview me cold turkey about my memory of Dr. Robert Whitty, a local pastor who celebrates his 100th birthday next Saturday.

So I walked straight from loading that trailer in tension, fear and trepidation to trying to think of something coherent to say to the reporter.

I have no idea what I said — but I talked a long time.

And, backtracking to early this morning: I had intended to spend the day working on my history of the Jacksonville Fire Department, but my friend Barbara drove over from the old folks home and we went to breakfast at Dave’s Diner then we sat in my garden and talked for almost two hours about doing little things for the love of Jesus.

I didn’t know it at the time, but that peaceful conversation prepared me for a rigorous day of cops and trailers and boxes and distraught lovers and people weeping on my shoulder and a newspaper interview. Plus some important phone calls missed.

And the mailman delivered a notice that our homeowners goes up another $200 next month.

And besides all that stuff, this afternoon I was supposed to set up an appointment with my urologist for an additional, in-depth, prostate exam.

Sure hated to miss that.

I was so looking forward to it.

Anyhow, in the midst of all this upheaval, distress and turmoil around me, what is my deepest, most heart-felt prayer?

Dear Lord, please let there be something good on tv tonight!

Please, visit my website for more www.cowart.info and feel free to look over and buy one of my books www.bluefishbooks.info
posted by John Cowart @ 5:18 AM


At 4:15 PM, Blogger jellyhead said...

After a day like that, I can see why you needed the distraction of something good on telly. I like to watch TV when I've had a stressful day, too - pure escapism!

Hoping you're having a less fraught day today!

At 1:41 AM, Blogger Live, Love, Laugh said...

WOW, sounds like you had some fun, but the way you ended this made me laugh, I just wasn't expecting that ending. lol


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