Wednesday, July 4, 2012


" thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead..." (Philippians 3:13 NAU)

I should really be writing a paper, but I'm not.  I'm sitting here listening to the new album from Smashing Pumpkins:  Oceania.  I'm not really thinking about the new album though.  I'm thinking about how much it hurts not to be who I was when I first listened to Smashing Pumpkins.  I'm wishing I could go back in time and be that guy again.

I don't miss everything about that guy.  He could be a real ass at times.  I guess some things never change.  But I miss his confidence.  I miss his dreams and his hopes and his conviction that the world was wide and anything could happen.  That guy could handle anything the world could throw at him.  He was fearless.

He was fearless because he had nothing to lose.  He was not responsible for raising children or their college education.  He was not responsible for aging parents in the autumn of life.  He didn't give a $#!% (that's him talking, not me) about what people thought about him.  (He really did care, by the way, he just wouldn't admit it.) 

He didn't worry about what would happen if he believed things people told him not to.  He didn't worry about asking the wrong questions or what would happen if - God forbid - he actually got the answers.  He didn't worry about whether his words could destroy people.  He didn't worry about the mess of ethical consequences for every. single. decision. he made.  He didn't lay awake at night wondering if he was committing career suicide or that someday the people he loved would hate him, or whether he would die broke and all alone.  He didn't know enough to worry.  If only I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

He was scared to death about hell.  I remember that.  I might be able to ease his mind a little there.

Paul's passage in Philippians 3 is NOT Paul's emancipation from his sordid past.  That's a wonderful sentiment, and he had probably fought that battle as well.  But Philippians 3 is about setting aside the confidence (in the flesh) he had earned by his stellar (Jewish) religious past - and cultivating a similar attitude in those to whom he was writing.  Still, I think there's something bigger in this idea of "forgetting what is behind" and "reaching for what's ahead."

The thing about time is that it only goes one way.  I am not that guy I used to be.  I think I carry him around with me sometimes, but I will never be him again.  That's not God's design.  We are moving forward.  Not backward.  The past is a door that is always closed.  We can spend all our time chopping and prying at it, but it will never open up again.  The future is always an open door, but the lights are always off in there until we can get inside and hit the switch.  The present, however, is always where we are.  Here we can look around and explore, get to know the people stuck here with us, read a book, share a few drinks and make peace with the past... before moving on.

And I think it's about time we did exactly that.  Time to be moving on.  I think I might buy this album.  Me and Billy Corgan are both going somewhere.  It's true, that door up ahead is dark and a little bit scary, but it's bound to get boring if we hang around here too long.  Oh, but, after you...


Matt Ray said...

This isn't directly related to your post, but I appreciate your openness Scott. I'm glad you are ministering at FCF.

Spot said...

Thanks Matt.