Friday, July 11, 2008

I am NOT Doom

Leonard Nimoy once wrote an autobiography entitled "I am Not Spock", during the height of ST:TOS re-broadcasts in the 70s. Like all Trekkers (no, not "Trekkies"), I got it and read it, devouring all I could about the man who played my FAVORITE hero - the cool, logical, super-strong, super-smart Vulcan.

About twenty plus years later, having reprised his role some 7 or 8 more times, he wrote another biography: "I AM Spock". At first glance, I was confused. Then I began to understand that he saw much of himself in Spock and vice-versa as the years continued. Wisdom and age had shown him he would never be free of this entity he created by his performance and thus, by extension, was now an indisoluable part of his life. People didn't want to come hear Leonard Nimoy speak per se, but the actor who crafted a great character we fell in love with. The danger of being an actor - a good one - I think. Peter Falk has his Columbo, Telly Savalas his Kojak - you get the picture.

I am not Doom. Not anymore, that is.

Oh, I don't mean since my last post. I mean since the events I mentioned in my last post: I was given a brief view of the man I was and God did that to remind me of how far I had come and Who took me there - Jesus.

I am not Doom. Doom does not care for imperfection or others who would waste his time.

Yesterday, on my "day off" as a caregiver, I went to a men's Bible study (at 6:15 a.m.) and then, thanks to a friend's request, helped someone move in (just for thirty minutes), and then went and visited an inmate at DuPage County Jail - a growing Christian who once had a successful business until drugs nearly destroyed him and his life.

You would want to know this guy - articulate and sharp, he has discovered the power of Jesus Christ and of God's love and mercy. I understand him because of my own sins. I understand the joy of revelation and the strength to resist destructive behavior by getting my joy from Christ. (I'll call him "Manny" for the sake of anonymity. )

As I sat down in the visiting booth and he came to join me (non-contact - glass between us), my Bible opened up naturally to the beatitudes of Jesus in Matthew 5-7. You know "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the Earth..."

It was a great review both for him and for me, as we read the passages together. I explained what Jesus meant about killing our pride and our ego so we could get healed and be real. We talked about how the 12 Step programs are all based on these passages and the book of James. We talked about how loss and failure can be God using pain for good - bringing us to a place of repentance and listening. Then we read what Jesus said about divorce about how bad it was.

"Manny, you know, I tell people my divorce is the best thing that ever happened to me - 'cause it got me to Jesus. I mean, divorce sucks - and Jesus is blasting guys in this passage for casual divorce - these women would lose all their support in Jewish culture and no one would want them, and even though my divorce is 'Biblical', God still showed me MY sin on the day we met - not hers."

He nodded. "I had a business for 15 years, and because I got locked up, I lost my house and my car - everything. But I told my mother - and she couldn't believe it - that this was the best thing that ever happened to me."

We gave each other a thumbs up and big grin.

We understood each other. We understood our sin. We understood God's grace.

And now we are beginning to understand Jesus - our Brother.

Our [expletive deleted] BROTHER, Man!

Wow.

I am not Doom. Not anymore.

And neither is Manny.

Praise God.

Praise Him in the highest.

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