We get what we ask for, but what do we give?

May 27, 2010

Growing up we had an electric fan to keep things cool.  I remember my brother putting a belt into it.  What a flap that caused; both from the fan and from my mother.  The gaps in the wire surrounding the blade were close enough to keep a Canada Goose from getting caught in the blades, but a Robin was sure to be diced to bits.  A child could easily loose a finger, or worse.  The safety of those fans was atrocious.  But my folks probably still have that fan and it probably still works.

On the other hand, Diane and I have probably bought a dozen “new and improved” fans; it’s impossible to get anything caught in the whirring blades.  Nothing that is, except dust.  And the dust ends up killing the fan as effectively, if not slower, then if you had stuck a Canada goose into the blades.

Why are modern fans built so cheaply?  Now I’m not going to go on a tirade about how things aren’t made like they used to be, that would only cause me to appear old.  But why aren’t things made like they used to be?

It’s our own fault.  We continuously ask for products that cost less, not more.  We give up quality for price.  How do I know.  Because Chevy outsells Mercedes.  Huffy outsells Pinerello.   Every restaurant has a value menu, and the places with a dollar menu make way more money that then restaurant with a twenty-five dollar lunch special.  We ask for cheap and disposable and we get it.

But do we also give it?  When people need us, turn to us, seek us, do we offer something of substance or fluff?

As Christians we need do decide:  will we offer cheap, throw-away relationships (you can always get a new one), or those that are lasting and valuable?  Will we offer something worth holding onto, something to be treasured and cared for, or will we offer trite, pithy, one-liners.  Will we be a reflection of Jesus to those who are important to us – sharing Truth and Love, or will we remind people of a Sadducee or Pharisee, sharing meaningless, memorized  impersonal monographs on proper etiquette?  Will we be real-or just the illusion of reality?

Keep in mind that while today’s fans are disposable junk, they are safe.  You could really hurt someone with the old-fashioned sturdy steel-bladed fans of our parents and grandparents.  It might just be safer, certainly easier to only offer up superficial, short-term relationships.  They might not hurt so much.

Of course they won’t work either.

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One Response to “We get what we ask for, but what do we give?”

  1. Sue said

    Wow. There’s a lot to think about in this one! I worked for a Pastor who did marital counseling. He showed me an article that stated one of the most important predictors of the longevity of a marriage/relationship is CONFLICT RESOLUTION. How couples, or relationships work out their differences is will determine a lot of how lasting, and deepening friendships will be. As soon as “trouble” comes, do we abandon our friends or work it out. Also, I believe that there are stages in every friendship. Some friendships will grow deeper and some will stay the same. Some friendships will only last a short time and end. I THINK THAT’S OK… as long as we are in a few good and lasting relationships. The number of friendships isn’t important. Relational formation as Jeff Griffin calls it in his message from the Chapel (from Chicagoland, hear it at chapel.org and please, pardon my shameless plug, he is excellent and centered, on target….love his messages) is key to a wonderfully fulfilling life. I am a far way off but I’m on the Journey and encouraged to keep pressing on. Thanks for posting such a thought-provoking entry! These ARE the BEST of times!! Grateful for your ministry. : )

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