25 April 2016

Good Things Happen in Mississippi

New Mexico is almost the worst. Thank you, Mississippi. What's wrong with Mississippi? I kind of feel bad for the state. I know what it's like to be from a place that people love to hate. I'll bet there are some great things about Mississippi that people don't know about. I'm thinking about all the things people don't know about New Mexico. What are the mysteries of Mississippi?

I know Mississippi gets tons of rain. I'll bet they get some of the most rain out if any state in the continental United Stares. I'm not going to check my suspicion. But, I'm willing to bet they're in the top five for rainiest states. With rain comes trees, grass and vegetation. They're also low in latitude. That means it doesn't get very cold and plants have more of the year to grow. I imagine beautiful flowers, huge trees and grass everywhere. Lakes, rivers, swamps, and of course, the Gulf. I'll bet Mississippi is a beautiful place.

We love to focus on the bad, though. It's well known that Mississippi is the worst. Well known? Maybe just for us in New Mexico. We fall 49th on a lot of lists. Education. Teen pregnancy. There are probably some more. I try not to pay attention to those lists. They make me sad because I know we're better than that. I'm sure some Mississippians feel the same. But, we like to focus on the bad.

I focus on the bad. I'm thinking about the news. It's all bad. The news got me down today. I especially hate hearing bad news involving kids. Just today, I read a story about a man shooting heroin while driving with a seven year child in the car. Another story about a drunk driver that killed a father, and two of his children, one 18 the other 18 months. So incredibly sad. This happened right down the street from where I grew up. I learned how to drive on those roads. It could happen to anyone.

What brings us to this? The drunk driver was a repeat DWI offender. Why did this man chose his lifestyle? What caused him to drink so much that he was barely able to speak to the officers that arrested him? And the man shooting heroin in his car... And these are just local stories. Ohio. Eight people killed.

Bad news.

I'm not talking about Mississippi anymore. I'm sure some good things happened in Mississippi today. Maybe someone went out of their way to help someone else in Mississippi. Maybe there was a meal shared in Mississippi. Some good things happened in Mississippi today, I'm sure.

Today, I read Philippians 2 again. I read it in the English Standard Version and in the New Living Translation. I think I like the ESV more for this bit.

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2:3-8‬ ‭ESV‬‬

When people act like Jesus it moves us. Could you imagine seeing Jesus first hand? He "emptied himself". It just blows my mind. How could someone be such a servant of others. I don't get it. I really don't.

So, good things happen. Every day. I'm still working out how to take all the bad things. I save that for another post.
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