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Thursday, June 08, 2017

The Secret of Patience


I consider myself a patient man. My Sweet Baboo says it's because I'm easily distracted and perhaps she's right. I've never had a talent for being bored. At a very young age, I became interested in everything. I used to read the encyclopedia. "S" was my favorite volume as it was not only the thickest, but had lots of articles about space and stars and spaceships in it.

Because everything draws my attention, I soon began to build up a backlog of stuff I wanted to do or know or find out about that I didn't have time or the cash to do. Some of it I have, over the years, managed to do. I collected a fleet of canoes and equipment which I left behind for the Pathfinder club back in Texas when I came up here to Washington State. I had a sailboat for a time - a Hobie Cat that could get up and fly in even a light breeze. That too I left behind,

I collected the parts for a six inch telescope on eBay and at optics surplus websites over ten years.
I haven't finished putting all the parts together yet, but someday I plan to have the time. Still I have a starfinder program on my computer and a couple of star-watching handbooks and both my basic and advanced star honors from Pathfinders. I became a Master Guide. I expanded my toy soldier collection. I visited the Alamo and put together 80 feet of slot car track. I lost that too along the way and never got to set it up. I also lost my train sets that I collected and never had the time or place to set up a permanent layout for.

I've camped with my family and led Pathfinder campouts. For years I wanted to write a book. I've written 8 and published 5. Working on the others. Wanted to be a writer. I've been doing that for more than a decade, but not very successfully.  I built a working homemade banjo, learned to play it and a guitar that I also rebuilt. It was a Goya which is exactly what I always wanted.

I haven't done everything on my bucket list, but I've done a lot of them. Some of the things I've done were surprises - testifying before the state legislature was something I never aspired to or visiting senators and congressmen in Washington. I wound up a Red Cross water safety instructor trainer and canoeing instructor almost accidentally. Was a teacher, a therapist and started five nonprofit organizations and schools. I even got to fly in a B-17, an unexpected gift for my work on a Special Olympics fundraiser.

Me after my B-17 flight (top row, far left)

It all happened because I made the decision when I was 17 to give my heart to God. I barely believed in Him at the time and still had my doubts. I was the most reluctant baptismal candidate that John Thurber baptized that day in the Jefferson Academy swimming pool. I told God I'd try Christianity out, but only on condition that He make a believer out of me. Like Moses, I wanted to see Him.

And see Him I did. It felt like the devil was after me from the get-go, but God kept showing up as if to say, "I'm still here."  He introduced me to a lovely girl and told me I was to take care of her because He (God) loved her very much and she was to be my responsibility from then on. He kept on showing up. He's given us prophecies, miracles and warnings all along the way and made a believer out of me, not just because of what God has done, but also because of the vehemence with which the devil has dogged us every step of the way.

My bucket list isn't finished yet, but I suspect it won't matter if I don't get everything checked off. I've experienced amazing and wonderful things, had three wonderful kids and a marriage that's lasted more than four decades and weathered storms that would have sunk a whole lot of ships.

After we're done here, there's all those millions of years to do more cool stuff than we can imagine. That I suppose is the thing I'm looking forward to most - time!  Some people think it would be boring to live forever. Not me. I've already got an itinerary that'll take me 40 or 50 thousand years to get through. Being incapable of being bored will be an asset in the New Earth.

© 2017 by Tom King

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