What’s Really Important?   2 comments

November 9, 2020

What would be the hardest thing for you to give up?

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Hard Answer

Wow, I’ve kicked that question around in my mind for a few days. It’s a hard answer, right? What would be the hardest thing for me to give up? And there’s so much to choose from – people, places, things … wow!

So Many Things That Are Precious

What to choose from, right?

The crisp smell of an Alaska morning in June? I can’t describe it to you, but Alaskans live through brutal winters to re-experience that scent for 30 days a year. Minimal air pollution, spruce and birch trees, lilacs — I’m not sure what makes that smell, but giving it up — to, like, move to Montana or Florida, seems inconceivable.

The convenience and control of personal automobile transportation? I’m 60 and my family lives into their 90s, so this is probably not something I need to worry about soon, but I work in the transportation sector, so I have coworkers who think about this a lot. There are some in society who would like to remove that capacity from all of us — supposedly for our own good. That would be annoying, but tolerable, until you realize the same people who want us all forced into self-driving cars or public transportation are also the people who believe in bureaucratic regulation of everyone’s minute life choices because they don’t think we can handle freedom of action. Can you imagine arguing with your car over whether you’re allowed to go to church, a political rally or the liquor store and being told No? I highly value liberty and personal autonomy.

Air transport into and out of Alaska? This one came home sharply to me because I’m on a trip out of Alaska right now. Flying out saved me three days of driving — if I could get through Canada, which I can’t right now, so …. Plus, when I hit the Lower 48, I’m headed to Florida and that’s another four or five days on the road. Definitely wouldn’t want to give up air travel, even though part of this trip will include a 1500-mile round trip drive from Seattle to Montana. I am looking forward to it, but I wouldn’t trade it for air transportation.

But There are Things More Precious

My family is precious to me (even if they sometimes drive me crazy) and I can’t imagine not having them in my life.

My faith is precious to me as well and during the two-month Covid lockdown here, I discovered that skipping church is not something that is good for me. My faith remains, but my human attitude wandered.

Maybe a Lentine Approach

Of course, people give up things all the time. There’s the Christian tradition of Lent. In Dumpster Fire (latest in the “What If Wasn’t” Series, Ben reflects on how he gave up chocolate for evangelical Lent one year. He chose chocolate because he didn’t really like chocolate, so he thought it would be easy. He discovered most of human society were chocolate pushers and it was hard to say “no”. Which, by the way, is probably the purpose of Lent, to teach us the frivolity of some of our choices.

I definitely couldn’t give up chocolate. I’ve been a *reborn straight-edge for 29 years and I gotta keep at least one vice. Chocolate it is.

*A straight edge is a musician-community designation for someone who chooses sobriety without the baggage of addiction.


There’s so many things that it is extremely hard to make a singular choice. If you say this is the hardest thing, are you not discounting all the other things that are precious to you?

I’ve named several things and while there might be a ranking among them, I’m not certain how to go about assessing it.

I think, if I’m serious, the hardest thing to give up might be writing. I’ve done that for vacations and once for a type of evangelical Lent and I learned I can’t shut off my brain, so I might as well write. Literally, without putting pen to paper or finger to keyboard, I was still writing in my head all the time. There you have it … what would be the hardest thing for me to give up … writing.

Posted November 9, 2020 by aurorawatcherak in Blog Hop

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2 responses to “What’s Really Important?

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  1. I am sadly aware there will come a day when I can no longer write for one reason or another. that’s why I’m trying to do as much of it as I can now!


  2. I gave up chocolate about 20 years ago and have never looked back. No more migraines! As for writing, I don’t feel the need to write all the time like I used to – perhaps I’m getting old, lol.


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