Sunday, November 8, 2009

Salonika 3 -- happy discoveries

The observant man notices failures around him as he goes through life. Some are petty. Some are catastrophic. A high school friend, one hears, "is doing 25 years to life,[0] for an incident involving a bank and a gun." An old mentor and excellent teacher was discovered to have forged his doctorate. Another friend, a brilliant and insightful guy, had a life that somehow never acquired enough momentum for liftoff into successful adulthood. He dies of multiple brain tumors, and his last few years are comforted by a new-found Catholic faith, and recourse to "the bottle."[1]

Then, from time to time, you learn that someone who'd made a spectacular train wreck of his life has overcome the setback and made remarkable progress in life. It is refreshing to find out "the rest of the story" decades later, and discover that it has a happy ending.

Paul tended to live in a compressed time frame. Note the exuberant joy:
1Th 3:5 Bu nedenle ben de daha fazla dayanamadım; acaba Ayartıcı bir yolunu bulup sizi ayarttı mı, emeğimiz boşa mı gitti diye iman durumunuzu öğrenmek için Timoteos'u gönderdim.
1Th 3:6 Ama yanınızdan henüz dönen Timoteos, imanınıza, sevginize ilişkin bize güzel haberler getirdi. Bizi her zaman iyi anılarla hatırladığınızı, sizi görmeyi özlediğimiz kadar sizin de bizi özlediğinizi söyledi.
His old friends were turning out all right. They were on the right track. All was well with his soul.


[0] "Doing time" is a euphemism for serving a prison sentence.

[1] When Americans speak of "the bottle," rather than of its contents, they frequently use the container as a euphemism for alcoholic beverages.

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