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Posted on July 16th, 2006

I just recently returned from a weekend camping trip with leaders at The Embassy. It was a heckuva lot of fun, despite some hot and humid weather!

The held throughout the trip were quite insightful; in one of them, Brandon had an exercise (based on a story in Joshua) where we wrote down “I am guilty of _________”, where we’d fill in the blank with something that’s keeping us from God. We also had rocks along with the paper that served as a memorial. We were then instructed to find someone else’s rock (and paper) and, after the group met back together, each one was read with “We are guilty of” as the first part of the sentence. The paper was burned and a pile of rocks were formed to symbolize the sins of the community.

My paper had “I am guilty of seeking the attention and approval of others” written on it. It may seem fairly innocent on the surface, a monster rears its ugly head after a little bit of digging. Issues of pride and jealousy abound. That said, I think that I should refine this to say that I am guilty of seeking the attention and approval of certain others.

For those who fall into that group, I often go out of my way to get noticed and appreciated. There are many times when the length to which I have gone defied reason. The thing is, I think that it’s really hard to avoid this. First off, I have a tough time saying “no” to reasonable opportunities. Secondly, why wouldn’t I want to get some positive light shed on me?

Then, there are those that do not fall into that group. And there aren’t too many of them. But what I do (or don’t do) with these people is just as bad: I almost try to get on their nerves. (Yes, I realize that I often do this in jest, but my intentions are not to cause sustained annoyance.) I feel like I’m twelve when I think about how to be a jerkass to someone. Gosh.

So as much as I needed the retreat to escape school and the pressures that come with that, I realized that I need to retreat from my bad habits. Well, I suppose retreat isn’t quite the right word; it implies an eventual return. But I think you get the idea. What is really frustrating is that I know that I’ve said this to myself many times before… I really hope that, one of these times, I can have some consistent progress towards realizing the goal. Frig.

Anyhow, I started this post a long time ago and have gotten distracted several times between then and now, so I apologize if it seems a little scattered. I’m also bloody exhausted. So I think I’m going to take a little retreat from consciousness right now. Bye for now.

One Response to “Retreat”

  1. Tony Says:

    I’ll be the first to admit that I seek attention. But I don’t think I seek approval. So now I’m wondering if it’s bad to even seek attention r whether that depends upon the nature of the attention being sought. Because I’m pretty indifferent to how I get it so seeking attention in a more positive manner might be a good idea, if such a thing is feasible.

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