Friday, November 7, 2008

Pipe Down

Starting this blog servers as another reminder that Dewayne is not here. As some readers may know my friend and counseling partner, Dewayne Wood, died suddenly in June of last year. He had started a blog that was connected to the website for our counseling ministry. He made his first and only post 3 weeks before his death. We had actually picked out the name of his blog about a year and a half before he made his first post. Dewayne did not move quickly. His pace was a gift to me. The name of this blog is connected to Dewayne and to Daymark. Dewayne was the best reminder I had that I was too busy, too noisy, to restless to really pay attention to the Lord the way I want to. The title of this blog is what Dewayne was saying to me in beautiful ways. "Pipe Down Gord and remember that God is God and you are not." To Pipe Down means stop talking and be quiet. The Pipe Down is a nautical/shipboard term. It was the last signal from the Bosun's pipe each day which meant "lights out" and "silence". Like Daymark, Pipe Down is a nautical term.

The title of Dewayne's blog was A Long Conversation. It was a reference to the ongoing dialoque we have with God as we walk and wrestle with Him. Dewayne and I talked regularly about life, about God, about counseling, about Cheryl and Dawn and my girls. In our weekly lunch meetings Dewayne and I would focus in on his counseling - the areas he was struggling the things he was learning and we would celebrate some small victories. Inevitably, Dewayne would be hard on himself and be lamenting something he wanted to do better. He was often frustrated with himself in some area of counseling and development and I would bring him back to the title of his blog. I would say to Dewayne, "This is a long conversation." What I meant, and Dewayne knew this, was that I wasn't going anywhere and we had plenty of time to walk together and to learn and that he was being too hard on himself. We didn't have plenty of time. I was wrong. It was a short conversation. In the weeks after his death one passage of scripture kept reverberating through my mind. Look here, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.” How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.” Otherwise you are boasting about your own plans, and all such boasting is evil. (James 4: 13-16) Dewayne's death, like his life, spoke to my pride, to my posturing, to my busyness, to the noise in and around me. I really wish he was still here to shuffle into my office and to ask me a question so we could talk. About God, about faith, about Cheryl and Dawn and the girls. It was too short a conversation. This blog is one attempt to continue walking in the direction I saw more clearly when Dewayne was here. We are too noisy. My prayer is that as I write and we interact that this blog would help us stay in the conversation with God in a way that helps us to listen. I think for a while I want to write about the events and people that have helped me to 'Pipe Down!'. I would say in the last several decades of my life Dewayne was the most itimate voice I had in my life saying, "Pipe Down!" I am grateful for the presence he brought to my life and the reminder he was that God moves slow.