Streams on Pavement

It's been above freezing yesterday and today, and forecast for the next few days {including thunderstorms tomorrow possibly}.

And sunny.

Snow is melting, roofs and gutters and pretty much everything is dripping.

I was driving home, with my window cracked, after work and running some errands today, and the edge of the road was glittering as snow, melting in the warm sunshine, became a stream of running water. For some reason, paused at a stoplight, the stream caught my eye and I sat for a few seconds and watched it glinting in the sun.

I'm so used to what I think things should be like and what "normal" is.

Streams are found trickling along mossy forest floors, bubbling over stones, crisscrossed by shadows as sun finds its way down through trees. And when it comes to life, and living, my norms are shaped by how I was raised, the education I received, the values and morals instilled, the people I look up to and watch as examples of how to live and how to follow Christ, the churches I've attended and typical worship styles and doctrines, the experiences I've had, and a lot of other influences.

But what I know isn't necessarily right, and it's certainly not all there is. This is not to say that my belief in Christ and the authority of His Word, my worldview, and many moral and value-based convictions are just whims that may or may not be true; these are certainly aspects of what I "know" that I hold strongly to as a Christian. Yet, there are peripheral, if you will, norms that I've come to expect, and become comfortable following suit. I don't raise my hands when I'm singing during church, and I'm accustomed to family dinner every night and praying before meals, and I think reading is hands-down the most invaluable part of school. But this does not mean that those who sing with their hands up, or don't pray at mealtime, or come home late from work and don't have many chances to read with their kids are wrong. There are simply different perspectives and preferences when it comes to the many external issues surrounding the central, unchanging Truth.

Because I'm so used to my own normal, sometimes I don't see the validity in different views and sometimes I don't accept the benefit and value of another perspective, another method, another way.

Sometimes I put reality, and normal, as I understand it in a box and miss the unexpected.

Like streams on pavement.

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