Archive for January, 2014

Memorials are not for the dead, the departed do not care about adulations or great words spoken about their lives, quite frankly because they are dead, and will nevermore personally influence this world again until the blessed resurrection.

Why then do we have memorials, when those now gone care little about the words we speak today? Our words cannot comfort the dead, bring them solace, give them joy or experience hope.

It is like talking to the sky, merely molecules going from place to place. It cannot speak to us or offer us a warm embrace, no matter how much we wish for it to be otherwise.

The truth is memorials are not for the dead but for the living. And it is up to us, the living, to remember the departed, to remember the worthy life now laid to rest.

Memorials are remembrances of the dead to the living, so that the living may continue the good work started by our fore-bearers.

We remember so that in times of trial and tribulation, the stories of how our righteous dead persevered with God’s hand by their side inspires us to not give up, to keep going despite all the hardships set against us.

The lives of those now asleep give us hope, no matter how tragic or heroic their life’s story may have been.

While it is true that the dead cannot personally influence the world, their memories can. The examples of our fore-bearers have driven many of the living to great deeds, simply to give the honor due to the departed, to thank them for the sacrifices they made for a brighter future.

So let us remember the worthy life buried here today, and not let the flame of their memory die out.

Let it drive us to pursue Christ more, to live to serve our fellow man, to show mankind the blessed hope that each child of God has, dead or alive.

Show the world the hope of eternal life forever with our Creator, this is what the dead in Christ have done, can we not do the same?

Let not the paths forged by our dead be overgrown, overcome by the wilderness of sin.

We must do this, for anything less will dishonor their names and the name of our Father.

Now is the time for weeping, a time to comfort one another; but let us gird ourselves and prepare for the next day, so that the sacrifices of our dearly departed will not be in vain.

And like the day every life must set, and thereafter night will fall, but the night does not last forever, for like every night there is a rising. What was once full of darkness is now full of light, and the hope of a new day has now arrived.

Let us not forget that we have a king who was once put to death but was raised back to life.

Let the hope of Christ remind us of the hope we have to see the dead again.

Flame swirls around me, covering all my flesh. These flames are not of my creation, they are what I was created for. Passion pours out my skin and ignites, I won’t keep silent, nor desire to be, because to show people freedom is what I was made to be.

The passion is the fuel, but my burden is the igniter. I feel the pain of those around me like every lick of flame that wanders across my skin; painful, yet so familiar. They think because I try to pursue the light I am the light, but I am void of light save the light that has been put in me. The light is the reason for the burning, but the burning is good, it is cleansing, though I may be destroyed.

I burned before, from the sins of my past life, but I have been killed and raised, baptized into a new life. These flames may destroy me physically, but my spirit is whole and complete, no longer dwelling in the dark. Now I burn for others and the flames are for my gain.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t feel pain; unlike the burning with which we are so familiar, these flames make me feel more, like my whole being coming alive for the first time. So I burn evermore, as I feel every subtle tremor that afflict my neighbors.

Every broken heart that beats I feel pulse across my skin, the burning intensifies, I know how much agony they are in. Though I go through life constantly struggling against the pain, there are still some pains that send me crumbling to my knees.

I feel it now, as I crawl to find rain, praying for relief against the piercing pain. It is in those moments I remember a man who burned for us all, who gives me strength even though I barely crawl. It is His sacrifice that brings me strength and reminds me that I can bear it.

So again I find my strength, feeling weak but relying upon the one who is strong. My mind struggles against the whispers of darkness, of emptiness, that reminds me that no one is watching or cares. Not that I do this for attention, but it is easier to bear the pain when I can speak of my burden. I suffer so long in silence, words of comfort are often far away, but the Word of God is my counsel and guide; in no one else I need to confide. His strength is what keeps me going in the moments I spend in the desert, no friendly faces to be seen for miles or days.

So here I burn, here I stand. A monument to people’s pain, but truly finding my reason for living in offering hope. For without hope and love there is only darkness and pain, and I will not allow evil to make another gain. For every time I stare into those broken eyes, I feel unending tortures but I see the spark of hope that remains.

I take that spark, and by the holy flame that burns me it nurtures into a flame, giving it to the ultimate Burning Man to make a fire out of the flame. Praying with tears of ashes that He will take the spark he crafted into a rose of fire back into the heart it was taken from.

And even if that spark only remains a spark, I will never stop pleading that will ultimately outshine the dark. For there was once only a spark inside of me, but He shaped it and molded it until I became free.

Some may ask what sort of life is it that one has to spend in constant pain? But the pain I took on willingly, it is the only way it can be felt. Not that it makes me a better person than all the rest, it just means I deny myself to give others my best. This is my burden, my pain to feel, but I would rather spend the rest of my days taking other people’s pain and giving them hope, then feeling and caring for nothing though I may live more comfortably and with longer days.

That’s why I’m tired of making excuses, it easy to see what matters when all the material and superficial burn

away. So don’t feel sorry for me, I’m doing the only thing that can make me happy. They may call me foolish or say I’m too hard on myself, but I will only feel a fool if I don’t do what my heart, my whole being begs me to do.

So here I burn, here I stand. In pain from the flames but the flames give me purpose. I burn so the world may not, like one did for all of us many years ago. I can only mimic His sacrifice, but nevertheless I am the Burning Man.

Lights like fireflies twinkle by the river, raucous laughter, joyful music, cheerful carousing waft through the air. How could these men be causing trouble for Wolfgang’s troll friends?

Bang! Crack! Sha-Boom!

So they have guns, lots of people in Whimsy have guns, what’s the big de…

“Pass the whisky! Pass the rum, the grog! Pass it all!”

Okay, now I can understand why they might travel to the Scrapyard to shoot some pot-shots at ‘some stupid trolls,’ or at least that is what Wolfgang says…about what the rivermen say about the trolls…anyways…

“Rivermen; a blight upon all reputable ship-faring folk, all show and no substance, all flamboyance and no backbone, and so uncouth.”

I can’t believe Koufax is being serious.

“and there is none worse than—”

“The King of the River! The mighty Mike Phinck!

With river-water in his veins, born in his mother’s sink!

The Salt River roarer! The Mississippi Torror!

Half wild horse, half cockeyed gator.

He sent wicked Prater to see his maker!

The river is his mother, whiskey is his father

Has no need of sisters, and we are his brothers!

Three cheers for mighty Mike Phinck,

Fighting for us all and keepin’ us in the pink!”

There’s probably only thirty or forty rivermen, (hey it’s dark out, I can’t tell exactly, give me a break) but their shouts rivaled that of any soccer match I’ve been to, even the Seattle Sounders game I happen to go to once. I guess that’s what whiskey will do to you.

“What a tar-thunderin’ good ballad me joyous boys!” Mike Phinck’s tooming voice could give Bunyan a run for his money, though Phinck’s sounds like it wandered off to the bottom of a barrel of whiskey. “But you know that we couldn’t do this without each other, even if I can swallow lighting and fart thunder!”

And I thought Beauregard was bad, maybe Koufax does have a point after all.

“Just as I am the best keelboater ever to call this river my home, you are the best rivermen ever to pole and row its currents! A red-hot snappin’ turtle as myself needs some frogs and fishes with which to slam down glasses of whiskey and shoot the buttons off women’s bodices with!” Whiskey cascades off Phinck’s face, taking a gargantuan swig.

The ground vibrates at the rivermen’s shouts and laughter, how can so few humans be capable of doing this? I guess the tall tales were true after all.

“And so now my burderen boys and landering laddies, it is time to sing a song!”

These guys must be totally wasted and yet still they stand ready to sing an old folk song. Who knew the Land of Whimsy was like a Mark Twain novel?

“Come all you jolly rivermen, who run the river down,

Be careful where you run your raft or you will run aground!

And boys, shove your grog around, the scores are on their own

For we’re the boys that fear no noise, although we’re far from home.

Well we rowed around old Carson, and nothing did we fear,

Until we came to Darkmist Rift, and plunged against the pier.

Now, Lucas Louge stood at the oar, his voice so firm and strong,

For when he struck the rock by Jove, he dove in first headlong.

There is one among our number, his name is Little Moe,

He plunged right in among the logs, and saved most all our clothes.

And boys, shove your grog around, the scores are on their own

For we’re the boys that fear no noise, although we’re far from home!”

“I’ve had enough of these amateurs. ‘River Pirates’, hah! It’s time for them to see what a real pirate with honor looks like!” Koufax raises himself over the dirt brim we’ve been hiding behind (he called it ‘scouting’, but let’s be honest…we were hiding) looking every bit a captain; but those aren’t fellow sky-pirates…they smell worse.

To everyone who follows my Whimsical Wednesdays stories (and Fantastical Fridays, and Make up Saturdays) I am sorry I have been terribly inconsistent. I am going back to school and am in the final edit of the book I have been working on for the past five years, so most of my time and energy has been going into these things. As such, Whimsical Wednesdays will have longer intervals (such as two or three weeks) until I finally finish my book, which I hope to be done with come the the beginning of March. 

With that said, I do promise to publish a new Whimsical Wednesdays story this upcoming Wed. as I have been so terrible to you guys of late. I really love this project and the support I have been given, all your likes and follows are deeply felt and I keep striving to be better, which is why I wanted to tell you all about what has been going on that has made these stories disappear over the past month or two.

I appreciate all the support and know that Whimsical Wednesdays will not die! Looking forward to seeing you all on hump day, hope you had a wonderful Christmas and a great New Year, I am looking very forward to what 2014 holds in store; and I extend my best wishes to all of you. 

The Dodger will fly again!