Saturday, October 20, 2018


My son has begun the art of skateboarding.  It pains me to watch him.  He is continually smashing his body on the concrete drive way and bruising his shins with the flying board.  I think it is time for him to invest in a helmet, gloves, elbow pads, shin guards, knee pads and steel toed boots.  Safety first…agility second.
The nearest I have come to skate boarding in recent years was accidentally stepping on a mass of acorns with my platform size 12 feet and nearly landing on my derriere in the church parking lot.  Prior to my near death by acorns, I recall minimal skateboard experience, as a child, visiting my grandmother’s house.  She owned a skateboard…though I don’t think she ever spent her time “grinding the rails.”  I never saw her “pop shuvit” or “tweak” a “wheelbite,” and though she was “sick” at times…I don’t think it was in a “good” way. (Truth: I had to look up the skateboard lingo).
While visiting my grandmother, my older brother and I would spend hours on that skateboard.  We would take turns going up and down the side walk from one end of the block to the other.  He was 5 and I was 4 years old.  We both had the same technique…we would drop our right knee down on the board…grip both sides of the board and start kicking with the left foot.  This worked fine…for a while…until we realized that we could go faster if one of us put both knees on the board while the other one ran and pushed from behind.
Clickety clack, clickety clack, over the sidewalk seems.  The speed was exhilarating.  I’ll bet there were times when we hit 5 miles an hour or more! Clickety clack, clickety clack, clickety clop, smack…flap…whack!…the front wheels of the board caught on the uneven seem of the sidewalk and my brother flew forward off the board landing face first in a position of “shakkah” on the now bloody sidewalk.  He turned his crying eyes towards me and I saw his bloody face…and his missing tooth. He lived…though it took a couple of years for his adult tooth to fill in the gap.
Shakkah is a Hebrew word and it is used often in the Old Testament.  Shakkah always refers to bowing down before someone or something.  It is this word that is translated into “worship” in the English language versions of the Bible.
When we think of worship, I believe that we too often base it on things like, feelings…an experience…or music…and often perhaps something that we must “like” or “enjoy” or it isn’t “good.”  There is a problem with this concept.  Worship in the Bible is a choice.  We choose to worship.  We choose to bow down.  We choose to attribute worth to the One who is worthy.
When we see worship take place in the Bible…the person worshiping is taking a “position.” That person is choosing to acknowledge the greatness of a certain someone or something…that is deemed greater than him or herself.  It is an act…a choice of honoring.
What do we worship? Sometimes I think we worship God.  Sometimes I think we worship sports.  Sometimes I think we worship our cars…or our families.  Sometimes we worship the created…rather than the creator.
What do we bow to?  We worship whatever we bow to. I think it is time that we acknowledge that to “worship,” is our choice to make, and what we worship is our choice.  I pray that we can begin to make the right choice.

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