The Words of the Moffitt Family

The Jawbone Of An Ass

Larry Moffitt
January 25, 2010

For the past month the weather has been bitter cold, sometimes snowing, or dropping chunks of ice, or doing it all at once with frozen wind diving down the backs of our collars like a screaming mother. Then suddenly today, still very January mind you, a big cartoon sun came out for a few hours and it did something to me. Temperatures hit the high 60s and it got my juices all boogered up in a good way. It was more than just a break in the weather or my mood. It changed the worn, cracked fan belt on my spirit. What's more, the new weather helped me be aware of other favorable trends.

For example, for a week or so I have been sensing a cooling of tempers on some fronts. Simply being mindful of the delicate fragility of the Abel and Cain relationships in our lives is a good first step. Resisting one's terrible urge to escort the other into the woods and whack him with the jawbone of an ass is an important second step. It's a two-steps-forward-one-step-back kind of dance but I am sensing progress in me, in others. More sensing than seeing, and maybe the sun coming out today helped me peek around the corner. But it's there, I tell you.

And speaking of the jawbone of an ass, I was talking with myself this morning. Another trend I am noticing is people getting in touch with their spiritual roots in a way they haven't in quite a while. The opening lines of Divine Principle, "How is joy produced?" beckons to you and me. People want to rediscover what it was that made them drop everything and come running those many years ago. We want to reconnect with what makes us, us.

In the summer of '74 I felt loved in Austin, Texas, and I was given an opportunity to give love back. Essential to this, God was involved, speaking and acting through others and through me. This is soooo not rocket science. It was deeply spiritual and deeply loving. It was all about the great news. In the afternoon we went to the park to find dinner guests. Members and leaders went together, arm-in-arm. We fed our guests a nice dinner, and for dessert, informed them that Christ had returned in their lifetime. This was reminiscent of brothers and sisters singing, dancing, praying, inspiring one another all night long in a too-small church in the Chungpa Dong neighborhood of Seoul in the mid-50s. It's just down the street from the big church, that has also now become too small.

And so now we are moving into a newer bigger church in Seoul. If we speak boldly and truly believe what we tell others, and if there is love, this building also will quickly become too small. May all our churches be too small the very day the ribbon is cut.

It is human nature that the more complex things become, the more urgently we feel the need to weed the garden, yank out the brambles and grab hold of the roots of things that really matter. And so it is with our faith. When you are drowning, you realize how much extraneous crap in your life has no importance at all. On this last point, I ran into a friend I hadn't seen in a long time. He has a strong spiritual orientation and he had the hand tremors of Parkinson's Disease and I asked him about it. He said, "Parkinson's gave me my life back." I didn't have to ask what he meant. 

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