Saturday, August 20, 2011


A local television ad claims that the 1950's are now retrosheik (and, therefore, buy their 50's looking furniture.) In plain English, retrosheik means that something that was formally great but recently sucked is now great again (for now.) I see a lot of 1950's stuff getting a second chance to sell itself to a world with an insatiable appetite for the newest trend, even if old. I was born in 1950 so I guess I am also retrosheik.

The 1950's were different than most think. We rehearsed surviving a nuclear attack (even though it would not have helped.) We had one car or none. Children walked along highways and wore no helmets or seat belts. Kids got polio. People of color lived on the other side of the tracks (as did many immigrants.) Summer was one big long adventure outdoors with no planned activities. Cancer and alcoholism were taboo subjects. An entire day at the movies (2 films) cost me 40 cents including drink and candy. Teachers had a place of honor in society. Milk, dry cleaning and baked good came to us at home. We had one week vacation that usually involved some place close or relatives. People retired and died soon after. Things were simpler.

Nostalgia is the feeling we get when we falsely remember the past for something more than it was. It is a phony memory that makes us feel warm. Anxiety, and we have a lot of that today-it sparks nostalgia, is nostalgia turned towards the future. We feel anxious because we cannot control what's next and doomsayers sell more stuff than contented folks.

Jesus build on the past but spoke truthfully (remember, he was killed for the truth) about the past and understood that God had already authored our future. Contentedness comes from dwelling in the present, even if painful.

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. Romans 5:1-5

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. Philippians 4:11

For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:32-34

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