I just finished having coffee with a good friend.  It was serendipitous, really, how we met and started hanging out.  Conversation flowed easily, like rainwater off a roof. 

We talked this morning about life and music — two of our favorite subjects.  Ben looked a little more tired than usual, and his white mocha did little to his appearance.  He’s a prodigious talent — musically and spiritually (if you can be a spiritual talent) — and has his hand in a growing church, school, forming a band and cutting a CD, as well as managing relationships and friends.   But I seemed to have stumbled into him on a day when it felt like a little too much.

With planning a wedding and working two jobs I sometimes feel like life is coming a little too fast.  It’s like playing the old game of Tetris: you’ve made it to a high level and the shapes are falling down so quickly.  For a while, you manage to fit them together but start to get a few gaps, and they’re backing up higher and higher and you can feel the game slipping away.  So it is with life.  The shapes — finances, or friendships, or fathers-in-law — come dropping down and, for a while, they fit together.  No gaps.  But, inevitably, they start building up and you can see that a few more wrong placements and your game is over.  Not that the game of life ends quite as easily.  The analogy breaks down.  Wrong placements in the game of life mean that it simply takes more work to go back and re-place the block, to try to get it to fit with all the others.  Sometimes blocks never fit. 

What if I always stayed on the easy level of Tetris?  What if I refused to go on, what if whenever the blocks started speeding up I turned the game off?  Would this be wrong?  Would I be refusing to challenge myself?  Again, the analogy breaks down.

When life comes too quickly, what if I dropped the ball?  It would mean my appearance would have a little tarnish on it — as it should under the grace of God.  It would mean that my money or my honeymoon to California wasn’t as planned out as it could have been.  I imagine, however, that the trip would still be great, that the money would still be there.  What if I acted like Mary in that famous story with her sister, and sat at the Master’s feet instead of preparing the house for Him?  Could I do that?  Wouldn’t that go against most of what I’ve been told from childhood?  But what if I did it anyway?  Would life, like Tetris, pile up shapes and finally end?  Or would it go on for another day?  Would I — gasp — even be more content and fulfilled?

What would a conversation with Ben look like then?

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