Don’t Do That: #wednesdaywisdom

Don’t Do That: #wednesdaywisdom August 14, 2019

What a busy day I have. Which means not lying about here surfing the internet, as I am doing. Still, surely there must be something to propel me through the day. How ’bout this unhelpful and specious tweet:

Sing like no one is listening.

Love like you’ve never been hurt.

Dance like nobody’s watching,

and live like it’s heaven on earth.


Mmm. This sounds like the opposite of the way you might successfully live a decent and godly life. First of all, can you even sing? What if you are a bad singer? Do you even like to sing? If you try to imagine that no one is listening but, in fact, they are, won’t all those people form a negative impression of you that you will have to spend whole weeks trying to overcome? This is unsound advice, unless no one is actually listening. Also, what is it, exactly, that you are trying to sing? Are you singing some weirdly trite pop song? Are you an opera singer? The first law of your life should not be to “sing like no one is listening.” That’s pure foolishness.

Ok, Love like you’ve never been hurt. Mmm. Also unsound. Wouldn’t it be better to look at yourself honestly, and your own relationships, and prudentially tell the truth to yourself about how dysfunctional you really are? Have you just been hurt? Are you, like Miley Cyrus, wandering around on a mountain without a jacket to keep you warm after behaving very badly for almost your whole short life? Did you hurt as much as you were hurt? Don’t do this. Decide to be a functional person.

Dance like nobody’s watching–such a bad idea, unless you’re a very good dancer already, or you’re dancing when, in fact, no one is watching. Really, you could lose all the vague number of friends you’ve managed not to alienate by constantly being weird in public.

Alright, last one–live like it’s heaven on earth. No, don’t do that. This will make you utterly miserable for the very simple and obvious reason that earth is not heaven. Lying should not be the first thing you do on a Wednesday morning. At the very least it is unwise. If heaven is already on earth, then you are in such a way to be disappointed. The very fact of me scrolling around twitter looking at Wednesday Wisdom hashtags is proof that heaven isn’t on earth. And there are many other proofs like Evil, Death, Being Hurt In Love, Being Judged By Mean People, and Politics. If you have to look at the whole scope of human foolishness and try to pretend that it can comfortably live alongside the beautiful things of heaven for which you long, you are going to be so disappointed. No, don’t live as if heaven is on earth, live as if heaven is in heaven. Then, think a lot about heaven. Wonder about what it will be like. Read books about what other people think about heaven. Read what Jesus and St. Paul say about heaven. Read the book of Revelation. Read the book of Isaiah. Read the Narnia Stories. Set your mind on it. Long for it. Look at the things you love about earth and then cast your mind towards the wonder of heaven and relax, knowing that God has a handle on the heavens and the earth.  He has concrete plans to untangle the strange and painful muddle of ugliness and beauty, misery and hope in a way that you can’t even begin to imagine in the middle of a stressful workweek.

Oh, I know, I know. The tweeter just wants you to feel free to be yourself. Don’t be inhibited! Be who you are! And then you’ll be happy. Which is the worst advice ever. You already are who you are. Just by waking up in the morning you are yourself. Thinking about it more is just going to make you more miserable. Try thinking about Jesus for a few minutes, and then sacrificing yourself for all the people in your life who are still there, not having been completely been put off by your strange dancing and singing proclivities. If you think about them, they might begin to think about you. But the more you express yourself, and think about yourself, and worry about being yourself, the more boring you’re going to be. Try it this way: Sing for the glory of God, Dance if you’re learning to be a Dancer, Do literally Anything Interesting, Put Others Before Yourself, and Live in the Light of Heaven. #wednesdaywisdom

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