Posted by: Gamin Savant | October 16, 2016

Yea for Fall

It’s fall. The air is getting brisk, the days are getting shorter, and the wind is blowing. For me that can only mean one thing — kite-flying. I went to the park today and flew my favorite kite. It’s the big delta kite with the 15 foot tri-color tail, and it dances on the wind like the kite and the breeze are best friends and always have been. Watching that kite play with the wind and feeling it tug on the string got me thinking. As I let out more string, I thought how much that kite wanted to fly, how it seemed to want to break free and fly forever. Then I remembered that my kite only flies like that because it’s tethered firmly to the earth. That string held in my hand enabled my kite to dance. If the string breaks and the kite were allowed to fly free, it would soon bury itself in the boughs of a tree or spin out of control and crash to earth. I know this because I’ve experienced both more than once. 

I guess I’m kind of like my kite. I really want to fly free, to dance on the wind and go wherever it blows. I want the freedom to do what I want with no restrictions. But I know what would happen if I had that kind of freedom. Soon I would bury myself in the obstacles that come my way, or I would spin out of control and crash to the earth. I don’t always like being anchored, but I don’t think I’d like having the string cut either. I guess I’m like the kite; I can only dance with the wind if I remain anchored to something much bigger than me.

Advertisements
Posted by: Gamin Savant | August 14, 2016

On Shepherds and Sheep

Lately I’ve been giving some thought to shepherds. You know, the Bible has a lot to say about shepherds. Moses spent a big chunk of his life looking after sheep. Who’d have thought God was preparing him to shepherd the Jewish people for 40 years in the wilderness? And David, too weak and scrawny to be a soldier like his brothers, wasn’t good for anything more than tending his father’s sheep. Until God called him out of that remote pasture and started him on the path to shepherding His nation.

In Jesus day, shepherds were not the kind of people you invited home to meet the family. Shepherds were considered to be crude, stayed by themselves out in the country, and were almost never educated. But Jesus saw beyond the obvious; he saw characteristics in these men of the earth that He wanted all men to emulate. He said that a good shepherd will leave the warmth of his bed and the safety of his camp to go out and find a single lost sheep. These sheep didn’t even belong to the shepherd. They most likely belonged to someone else who lived in a nice house in town and left the dirty work of caring for the sheep to these uneducated louts. But the shepherd knew in his heart that there was a lost sheep depending on him to come and carry him back to the safety and warmth of the sheepfold.

I’ve been wondering how many of today’s shepherds would leave the warmth and safety of their bed to go out into the night and find the one lost sheep. I bet you think I’m talking about pastors and other church leaders, but I’m not. I’m talking about each one of us who is responsible for the welfare of others. Ouch, that’s sounds like most of us, doesn’t it? Every month, about 25 people enter my classroom. They expect that I will teach them to do their new jobs, and they hope that I will do my job well. And a few of them who learn differently then the others are desperately hoping that I will leave no one behind, that I will reach out to return that lost sheep to the fold.

Who are the members of your flock? And how many of them have you left behind? I stand in front of a mirror as I ask these questions — and I don’t always like the answer.

Posted by: Gamin Savant | July 26, 2016

On God and churches

Sometimes I wonder why we don’t communicate a lot more. Mostly I am so thankful that we communicate at all. You know, you were the first online friend I ever met. It took me weeks to figure out that someone who’d never actually met me wanted to be my friend. We didn’t become friends because each of us clicked on an icon. We’re friends because each of us shared our hearts.

 Last week I left my church. It’s not the first time I’ve left a church, but this time I won’t be looking for another. I can no longer handle God’s people learning who I was 30 years ago, and seeing how quickly they can make me decide to leave. If I visit a church, sit in the back row, say little, and leave as soon as the service is over, I get along just fine. But let me become involved, start meeting people, and doing more than just warming a pew, and someone gets curious and Googles me.

I may visit a church now and then. I do love to be with people who love God, even if they don’t necessarily love me. But I don’t see myself ever getting involved in a church community. It’s just too painful. I can’t be asked, either directly or indirectly, to leave another church. I know God has a plan for my life. I just might be one of the foremost authorities God’s grace. I’m also living proof that Paul lied when he said he was the chief among sinners (although, in all fairness, I hadn’t been born yet when he said that). I also know that God’s plan is for me to be alone that I might be free of human encumbrances that I might be free to go wherever He leads whenever He calls. It’s certainly not a bad life; it just takes some getting used to. Thanks for listening, my very first cyber friend.

IMG_0055.JPG

I should have been up there, right there on that one on the far left. Grace is the reason I wasn’t.

[This was originally written as a note to a dear friend, then I realized that the few who’ve read this blog in the past are just as much my dear friends. I think it might be time for me to start writing again.]

Posted by: Gamin Savant | May 10, 2013

On Exploration

If you’ve never had the joy of watching a newborn child grow and learn and explore his or her world, I strongly suggest you get a kitten.  It’s the next best thing.  This is Princess.  She adopted me about a week ago.  If the picture looks a little out of focus, it’s only because she won’t stay still long enough for my camera to focus.  She’s about 5 weeks old and still fits easily in one hand.  And she has the heart of an explorer.  Everything is new to her, and she fearlessly goes about the business of learning all there is to know about her world.  The other day I started the vacuum cleaner and she scurried under my bed (her favorite hiding place).  Then she must have decided that no tall, ugly beast was going to mess with the good thing she has going here, so she came out and attacked the vacuum.  Knowing it never stood a chance, the vacuum bid a hasty retreat.

Watching Princess grow and become more confident in herself and her surroundings gives me a whole new perspective on things.  This little kitten loves everything, gets into everything, and fears nothing.  I really hope she’ll keep me.

Posted by: Gamin Savant | December 7, 2012

Lest We Forget

image

Posted by: Gamin Savant | December 4, 2012

Remembering What’s Important

image

Posted by: Gamin Savant | November 22, 2012

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

How can I begin to list the myriad blessings for which I am so grateful on this day.  For starters, I’m enjoying a very good life.  Last year at this time, I wasn’t so certain I would ever say that again.  I was maintaining a practice I call ‘fake it ’til you make it.’  Simply put, if things aren’t going your way, just pretend they are and eventually they will.  Don’t knock it; it works!  Today, I live in a community that just may be one of the most generous and welcoming I’ve ever seen.  I have an excellent job working for and with great people.

I have my own home.  Those five words sound so simple, yet they mean the world to me.  How long has it been since I’ve been able to say that?  Let’s just say the last time I could say that I had much more hair and much less gray in it.  I’m sitting in my den as I write this.  I’m writing at a beautiful desk that was a gift from a dear friend, sitting on a very comfortable chair that was a gift from another.

At the beginning of this month, I drove to California to the unveiling of my mother’s headstone.  The entire trip was sensational.  On the way out I stopped in Nevada to visit with my best childhood friend.  We had a long breakfast and got as caught up with each other as possible in a couple of hours.  I think I won’t wait another 25 years to get in touch with him again.  In California, I was met by friends and family.

Some of you may recall my pledge to spend the rest of my life doing good for others.  Well, I’ve tried to keep that pledge to the very best of my minimal abilities.  The biggest problem I’ve run into is that the more I do, the more is done for me.  If I do some small thing for someone, three other people do something for me.  I don’t know exactly how score is kept on this thing, but so far I’m losing badly.  But don’t fret, the game is so much fun to play that I’m pretty sure it doesn’t matter who wins or who loses.  I would challenge my vast audience of readers (both of you) to try it.  See if you can do more good for others than is done for you in return.  I’m willing to bet you will find it impossible.  The great God who made us will not allow Himself to be outdone in the doing-good-stuff department.  Go ahead, try it.  I dare you to prove me wrong.

This Thanksgiving, I’ll be having dinner at the home of some dear friends in the company of several other friends.  I hope each of you has even more to be thankful for than me, and I hope you have as good a day as I’m sure I will.

Do something nice for someone without any expectation of reward or gratitude.  I promise you’ll get both, even if you don’t see it right away.

Best wishes,

Gamin

Posted by: Gamin Savant | June 21, 2012

Gamin Takes A Holiday

This one is dedicated to all of you who have supported me, prayed for me, encouraged me, and most of all, loved me for the past year.  Yesterday, I did something that most people take so much for granted.  I drove to a town about an hour away just to see the sights and relax.  I’ve been waiting 25 years for the chance to do just that.  Many people have done some incredibly nice things for me in Texas and Wyoming, but this was the first time I was able to do something nice for myself.  My bills are paid, I have a few dollars in the bank, and I had a few dollars to spare.  I spent the day in Thermopolis, home of the largest hot springs in the world (at least, that’s what the local Chamber of Commerce says).  It is also the home of the Wyoming Dinosaur Center, a really top-notch museum.

I hope I can convey just how much this day meant to me.  For 12 months, I’ve been seeking some sense of normalcy in my life.  I’ve learned two lessons.  First, there ain’t no such thing!  Second, today came awfully close to what I imagined ‘normal’ might be like.  I took lots of photos, and I want to share them with you.  But most of all, I want to thank each of you who have been there for me.  I like to think the future will continue to be exciting, but maybe not quite as bumpy.

This is the drive to Thermopolis, the Wyoming Dinosaur Center and the hot springs.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Posted by: Gamin Savant | May 21, 2012

A Home Where The Buffalo Roam

I’ve been in Wyoming almost 3 weeks, and so far life is very good.  My job is all I’d hoped for, and I’d forgotten just how much I love the Rocky Mountains.  It’s a little humbling to start a job at which I have to learn where in the store to find thousands of hardware items.  Fortunately, I wear a radio and my co-workers are very patient.  You would think they’d grow tired of hearing, “Can someone tell me where to find…?”  But, they just keep telling me not to worry, that I’ll get it soon enough.  Even the customers are great.  When I tell them I’m still trying to learn the store, many say, “Don’t worry.  I’ll help you find it,” or “I’ve come here for years, and I still don’t know it.”  Do you have any idea how many PVC fittings there are?  And that’s just one small aisle.  Truthfully, I think I’m getting the hang of it a little more each day.

I never really thought I’d like small-town America as a full-time lifestyle, but I’ve been wrong before, and I was wrong on this one.  The more I get settled in, the more I like it.  Check out my little slide show, and you’ll see some of the reasons I like it here.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Posted by: Gamin Savant | April 21, 2012

The Next Chapter

I’m back.  My special thanks to those who let me know I was missed.  About 10 days ago, I came home after a week on the road.  I had been on duty and behind the wheel far more hours than the law allows, but I needed the job and told myself this is what I had to do.  I got to the yard about 12:30 AM and told my boss I was going home for at least 34 hours as required by Dept. of Transportation regulations.  He told me I had to drive to New York later that morning.  We argued, and long story short, I no longer work for that company.  When I was in driving school, there was one message we heard every day, “The most important piece of equipment on the truck is your license.”  We were reminded daily not to do anything to jeopardize that license.  I’m a slow learner, but I usually get it eventually.

So, what happens next?  If you know me, you know I have few close friends, but the people I call by that name are the best.  Despite what Facebook says, you don’t get to be a friend be clicking on an icon.  One of my friends is Larry.  Larry and I go back about 20 years to a very different time and place.  Today, he lives in Wyoming and he wants me to come there.  He’s confident that I can have a better future there, and I’m ready for the next great adventure.  So, on the 30th of April, I’m going to pack Maxwell (my ’98 Olds) and head north.  I’ll be visiting some other great friends in Denver and Longmont along the way.  I’ve already registered with the state job service office and applied for several jobs in Wyoming.  I think this is going to be good.

I promised myself, and indirectly each of you, that I would use this blog to share lessons learned as I’ve journeyed through life.  So, now comes the question, “What have I learned?”  First, I got to drive several times between Texas and the Northeast.  I learned that this country is still magnificent.  It is so beautiful to see the mist rising from the meadows of Virginia and Tennessee at sunrise.  The hills of Pennsylvania are awesome.  The Mississippi River is huge.  Every time I crossed it, I was more awed than the time before.  And the people — If I had to lump all Americans into a single category and label it, I would say Americans are basically ‘good’.  If I had a question, it seemed there was always someone nearby who was more than happy to answer it.  If I had a problem, someone else had been there before and was glad to lend a hand.  We can argue all day about the good or bad of America’s government and institutions, but the American people have not changed in 250 years.  They’ll still help a stranger if they can, and offer a kind word if they can’t.

Perhaps between now and next November, it would be good for us all to remember that America is not her government or her politicians.  America is Americans; each man, woman and child plays a part in making us who we are.  And when we cut through all the politics and social commentary, we are still a good and decent people.  Yes, I think I’m going to be just fine in Wyoming.  Stay tuned,  the next chapter is going to be the best one so far.

Older Posts »

Categories