Friday, July 16, 2010

Reversing the Flow of Play

Wisdom constructs often work in paradoxes, ironies and reversals. Get to the ‘obvious-in-hindsight’ wisdom and it always seemed like such a strange journey.

The game of Australian Rules football has evolved as all games do. Zones, different man-on-man tactics, ‘the flood,’ and fast transferences of play are but a few of the innovations we find in this marvellous modern contact game today.

Teams often gain a quick ascendancy when they switch play from one side of the ground to the other, catching the other side out with few players to contest the fast-moving ball, which is now headed goal-ward.

This is a quick reversal and it’s beautifully applicable to the life of faith.

Our Default Position

By far and away the typical human being sits evenly on their laurels during the good times, and then, like drowning mice, we panic like mad in the presence of trial and difficulty.

We were born this way and we’ll battle this way all our lives. It’s very human to respond like this.

A Better Alternative – A Key Reversal

Conceive this for a moment. During the good times—the times of physical, cognitive, emotional and spiritual plenty—we run with drive and purpose almost beyond reason... rest also is taken with poise—a purpose all itself; a sort of focused inactivity keeping our spirits revived.

Living like this is about engaging with every good thing to the maximum of its potential.

Now, during the not-so-good times—the times of lack—we resist the implicit urge to run mad and react any which way, thinking any activity is better than nothing. ‘Any activity’ is not necessarily good for us or important others.

Instead, we focus on slowing down and taking within ourselves the heavy mind and heart; we reflect and consider.

By slowing down—despite our berating instincts, which are not always right—we give ourselves time as we invest in the wisdom of situational surrender; a gorgeous thing intuiting and predicting correctly, God’s grace.

The best thing about this ‘reversal of the flow of play’ is we remain quite paradoxically in control.

This is the life toward spiritual empowerment.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

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