Find Your Way Back

That’s the song from Starship I was hearing today on the drive home. Someone in the parking lot had called me “sir” and I was once again reminded that something had changed in my life.

  • Fewer and fewer people that I encounter know what I’m talking about when I make references to comedy routines from the television show Laugh-In (67-73).
  • More and more strangers that I casually encounter are calling me “sir.” Even the old men at church started calling me “sir” a few years ago!
  • I almost never look forward anymore. These days I am mostly looking backward.

I don’t usually sit for photographs, ask anyone in my family. But nowadays when I do see a photo with me in it, there’s this old guy looking out. Something has changed and I’d sure like to find my way back!

There’s not much I can do about fewer and fewer people in my world who are aware of 70’s pop culture. I just need to raise awareness, right? So if you see me approaching you with a funny TV clip of Joan Worley betting her bippy, bear with me. I’m trying to stay young.

Maybe if I stopped talking to myself so much people wouldn’t call me “sir” so often. They’re just trying to be helpful, right? I think norms that help us all to get along, like showing respect, are good for us as a society. I need to just accept my new status as a good thing and just get over the shock.

The most troubling aspect of all this is my new habit of spending too much time in the past and not enough in the future. Sure I’ve gotten wounded by some awful giants, but who hasn’t? That’s no reason to hide out, lick your wounds and fear the days ahead. Who am I, a caveman who’s retreated back to my stone age cave? No, I’m a man of the future and what I need is a constant reminder to tighten my grasp on hope. To never stop dreaming, even after the nightmares have come and gone.

Hold fast to dreams,
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird,
That cannot fly.
― Langston Hughes

The longer you look backward, the more stooped you become, and the faster your heart spoils. Maybe that’s why people are stopping me in the parking lot, calling me “sir” (and asking if I need any help)?

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases;
Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;
Who satisfies your years with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.

– Psalm 103: 1-5


cs lewis

6 thoughts on “Find Your Way Back

  1. I am getting divorced. In response, God led my family, friends, colleagues, doctors and advisers to write, call, teach, stretch, counsel, phone, pray, feed, advise, examine, text, lead, hug, and look after me.

    The end remains the same; the journey makes the difference.


  2. I’m so sorry that you’ve had this terrible experience. I know that God can take you through this dark valley. I don’t always have enough faith to make it. Thank you for your encouragement.


  3. Randy, what a precious thought! I know you have a glorious future. (I have always known it!) I praise God you brought that young man (whom I remember) with a sense of humor; a prophet’s view of life, and an outrageous love for God with you!…These are precious moments as you and your Dawn enjoy this moment, this day in your lives. I’m too old to call you ‘sir’…so if you need to feel young again bring Dawn and come visit us. Patsy


  4. Randy,

    I am again so thankful that you include me on your Invisible Man emails.

    Our small group is starting a new study tonight on Bill Hybles “The Power of a Whisper, Hearing God, Having the Guts to Respond”. He quotes a poem he was given in 2nd grade

    Oh! Give me Samuel’s ear,
    An open ear, O Lord,
    Alive and quick to hear
    Each whisper of Thy Word;
    Like him to answer to Thy call
    And to obey Thee first of all.

    As I read this over & over I kept thinking that God can still use me, at age 60, if I will only listen for His whispers. Looking forward is the only way to live.

    Thank you Randy!

    Sharon Beal
    Asst. Director of Admissions
    The Graduate School
    Houston Baptist University
    Hinton 108B
    P: 281.649.3744
    F: 281.649.3390

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