My bad habits shock me at times, like when I pick up a book and realize dental floss is being used as a bookmarker. That's so gross and totally all me. Or when I'm the pronouncer of impending doom to strangers. What is wrong with me?
I recently was hiking with a friend when we encountered a beautiful golden doodle who was black like my sweet Cassie. I couldn't just say, "What a beautiful dog." Nope. I said, "Make sure you check his toes on a regular basis because black dogs and poodles get toe cancer" and then I went into way too much detail about my dog's woes. I could hear a voice saying, "Stop talking Tari," but I couldn't dam the flow of doom once it started.
I knew I had an issue when I passed a couple with a baby in a baby carrier and I wanted to warn them to treasure every second because before long their babies move away to other countries, but then I realized that was weird so I covered my mouth to keep from talking and that wasn't weird at all.
I had no idea why I kept wanting to warn others of what is to come, until I read the sign at one of the trailheads.
In case you can't read the last line, "Don't approach or attempt to take a selfie with the bears; this will end poorly for you."
We have signs that state the obvious because we don't trust people to pay attention or have common sense. I feel the need to warn people because I don't trust they will pay attention and then they'll end up with mistakes like mine.
But then I realize the only life I can really pay attention to is mine.
The Greek word "idou" is used 142 times in the stories of Jesus and he commands it at least half those times. The word gets translated as "behold, look, pay attention." Jesus commands us to pay attention almost as often as he commands us to love. And then he sets people free knowing we can't live each other's lives. We can keep opening our own eyes to see the beautiful dogs, beautiful babies, and beautiful bears knowing we can't hold on to them; we can only pay attention to what is.