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[IPr] Challenges

Sermon begins: (uh oh,  Randall needs to check his bg again...)

One of the challenges that faces each of us who has diabetes is 
the same type of puzzle that faces anyone with a serious medical
condition or anyone who is watching the years spin by.  To be
very blunt about it, we are faced with our own mortality and our
weakness.   In our society to be seen as weak is often to become
nothing more than roadkill as everyone rushes about seeking higher
profits or chasing after phantom dreams of fulfillment.  Our recent
discussion of the effect of our bg on our mental processes is a good
example - for those of us who make our living by our minds, it is 
frightening to face this kind of effect, and for those who make their
living by their physical activity the impact on their endurance and 
reaction times probably gives them the same type of sinking feeling
in the pit of their stomach.  

As Americans, we are born to the American Dream, nursed on ambition
and weaned on greed.  Our idols are those with the "right stuff" - for
exploration on the edge of space or in the middle of the capitalistic
maw.  We envision the "self made" person who is independent of all,
dependent on none and with determination on their face march victorious
over the bodies of those who stand in their way...  

and thus when we come face to face with our own mortality, knowing that if 
we mess up, if the pump has a mechanical failure, if the insulin manufacturer 
or the test strip factory has a bad day we will at the very least have a very
bad experience and at the worst could once and for all discover the 
truth behind all of those Sunday School stories...  and we begin to take 
stock of the limitations, boundary conditions and new fences and fears 
that we see growing around us it will have an impact on us.  It is a multi-
pronged impact, with physical, emotional and spiritual aspects.   In this
fearful new world we must become more than we have been in the past in
order to survive.  Not more arrogant or willful, but more aware.  Not more
boastful or proud, but more thoughtful.  Not more demanding, but more 
understanding, both of ourselves and others.  

How can we do this?  It is a gradual process, and there are many paths that 
some people claim are equally valid.  I won't argue that, yet, but what 
matters is that we recognize our need to grow and begin to look both inside 
and outside without bowing to fear, guilt or ignorance.

In the book "From our Christian Heritage" stories are quoted about some of 
the early Egyptian monks.  One story goes like this:
	a monk asks Abba Sisoes, "What shall I do, Abba, for I have fallen?" 
	The desert father replied, "Get up again."  The monk then said that he
	had fallen, gotten up, and had fallen again.  What now?  How many times
	do I get back up?  "Until you are taken up in either virtue or sin,"
	Abba Sosoes said, "for a man presents himself to judgment in the state
	in which he is found."

How many of us are familiar with the saying, "Where ever you go, there you 
are"?  Whether our bg is high, low or perfect, we take the next step from 
where we are at that moment.  We may be on course or off course, but each
step may give us the opportunity to correct our path.  My prayer for 
everyone on this list is that each of us will be given the wisdom we need 
for each moment and all those little annoying decisions that we have to make
to "close the loop" and keep our bg close to target.  I also pray that while
our minds are sometimes occupied by this endeavor that we will also find the 
time to see the other things that really matter and that we will be ready
to face each day in the state that we are in, and ready to grow into 

(I climb off my pulpit, soapbox and email program... and hope everyone has 
a good weekend!)

Rev. Randall Winchester
WD4HVA (email @ redacted)
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