Witches, Wizards, and Flying Monkeys

She was there in her ruby red slippers. I was looking on her face of wonderment in awe. Hand in hand we walked into the theatre. Her first real life TPAC experience, and I was milking it for all it was worth. This was her special 5-year old birthday present. She and I experiencing the magic of the stage. All the way to the door, I was re-telling her the story of Dorothy and her friends: the Tin Man, Scarecrow, the Lion....their quest for what they did not have. The journey down the yellow brick road. The hope that followed them. The quest for what was missing. The emptiness of thinking they may not get it. The learnings along the way. The excitement of the adventure.

After re-watching The Wizard of Oz three or four years ago, it began to have a different meaning than just some flamboiant mythical characters cast in a lovely story of rainbows and emerald cities. It was deeper than that. Well....if you wanted it to be. A story of lacking, longing, hope, and revelation. The story of OZ is the story of US. Our disappointments in ourselves and in our lives - wanting what we don't have and feeling the emptiness of something we truly DO need. Searching....hunting....striving to find it. Through forests of hauntings, poppyseed gardens of distraction, dodging flying monkeys of deception, partnering with jitterbugs of the hollow dance - only to end up finding what we always thought would make us happy - doesn't. That which we searched high and low for as we travelled down life's road - humbly bowing in pleas before the Great Wizard for Him to say,

"So.....it's kinda not that easy."

"It's not about me granting your wish. It's not about that at all. It's about finding your way" WHAT? I have traveled all of this way in search of YOU, and that is your lame answer? That's how you grant my wish? Fine wizard you are?!

Sound familiar? Looking in the mirror - suddenly we begin to have hairy courage-less faces, silver rusted hearts, and straw-like minds. Wishing for granted pleas and petitions to the Great One who is all knowing and all being and all giving. But is he? Is he REALLY? Yep.

Ironically, I wrote this after a session last week, "You don't trust Him because He is doing what he is "supposed" to do. You don't trust Him because he is doing what you want (even if it's a perfectly reasonable and righteous desire). You trust Him because he is God and you are not. Because even if he doesn't somehow SEEM trustworthy to you - the fact that HE is God and YOU are not makes him Trustworthy by default. Period. The real question is what are you trusting Him for? To do what you want or wish? If so - you will always and everlastingly be utterly disappointed. But if you are trusting Him to be RIGHTEOUS and to KNOW best because HE is Father and you are NOT - then, yeah....you got it."

DORTHY TO GLINDA THE GOOD WITCH (who, by the way, Julia was most preciously intrigued by) says this: "Oh, will you help me? Can you help me?" GLINDA: "You don’t need to be helped any longer. You’ve always had the power to go back to Kansas." DOROTHY: "I have?" SCARECROW: "Then why didn’t you tell her before?" GLINDA: "Because she wouldn’t have believed me. She had to learn it for herself."

I have the power within me? I have to learn for myself? Seriously? Seriously.

I say this often to those I work with daily: In the darkest time of my life, when I was in a fetal position at the bottom of the pit, praying for God to come in, pick me up, and place me at the top of the well-like cave - I was desperate. Broken. But I promise you this: If he would have simply picked me up and placed me at the top of the pit - I would have never ever learned how to climb. Learned how to fight. Learned how to live. I would have only learned how to depend - with muscles of atrophy, a courage-less spirit, a frozen heart, and a wisdom thirsty mind - i would still be there.

Enjoy the journey, friends. Just watch out for those flying monkeys a long the way. They're killers ; )