Echoes from the Campfire

The good book never promised us rockin’ chairs, but it says we’re gonna have trials and tribulations… .  I just like to shut down those trials before they start up all that tributain’.”
–Lou Bradshaw  (Palouse)

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
–John 16:33 (NLT)
I’ve come to the conclusion that some folks out there are strange.  We live in a society in which we have to be even more careful than ever before.  Add to the problems of the past with shysters and scoundrels, now we have hackers.  We also have millennials and snowflakes to contend with.  Now, I will be the first to admit that not all millennials are strange creatures, but there is a higher percentage of them.  The real problem is not when they were born into this world, but the character that they developed while growing up.
There have always been people of weak character.  I was reading just the other day of a somewhat mountain man, somewhat trapper, and guide.  This person had all of the training and know-how, but he lacked something within to be trusted.  Another problem he had was his personal image.  He would hire on with a group of trappers, but within months or weeks he was forced out of the group.  This happened time and time again and each time the fault was with the group, never with the individual.  It seemed like he always blamed his cheating, conniving, laziness, and cussedness on those around him–they were the ones that got him fired, not his character and work ethic.
It wasn’t long before people who worked and lived in the mountains didn’t want him around.  It was hard for him to make a living unless he was hired as a guide.  One thing he knew was the trails since he had bounced around on them for so long.  He could make it as a guide as long as there was not any extreme pressure put upon him.  He still blamed others for his own faults and began to add bitterness and anger to his character.  Finally, there came the time when he called out – someone whom he thought caused him to be shunned.  He challenged him to a dual, and the results was that he was killed.  His dying words were, “It’s not fair.”
With the cry of entitlement and sanctuaries that same phrase is becoming a motto.  You got it bucko, “Life is not fair.”  However, most of life’s problems are handled by those with character and proper work ethic.  They continue through without whimpering, whining, and blaming others.  So my sweet little snowflakes start to understand that life is not about you–never was, never will be.  When I taught I can remember the parents complaining, not usually to me, that I was too hard, too demanding in their work.  The longer I taught the more I had that complaint.  I almost shudder when I think of the future when these will be the folk that will be the ones in the political and business centers of our country.  But know what?  There still will be those of backbone and tenacity to see a job done.  I believed in the concept that I could not in all good conscience let shoddiness pass unchallenged.
     “He’s a weak man who I’ll bet has led a weak life.”
               –John Vermillion

     “Content thyself to be obscurely good.”
               –Joseph Addison

Why are there folk out there that seem to travel this trail through life alone, or seemingly alone?  One reason is that they may be in the type of John the Baptist.  He lived in the wilderness and came out only to prepare the way of the Lord.  I think it interesting that the Lord chose a man of the wilderness to prepare His path.  Why did John live there?  Part of it was because he preferred the simple life, another reason was that the temptations of the city were not readily available and accessible.  Another reason is that the wilderness refines a person’s character.
Others are alone because they are rejected by society or a group of people, such as the man in the story above.  They cannot or will not develop character, and therefore cannot hold a job and then begin to blame others for a mistake.  They bounce from one place to another.  One of the dangers of these people is that eventually they begin to make communes of their own type and become a blight on society.