This is a blog post about blessings, if you didn’t notice the name. I think for a lot of us, it is easy to see the glass half full. Some of us, not all of us, are like that most of the time including myself. But then it takes a magnanimous or tragic event to make us realize we weren’t doing so badly to begin with.
The Wizard of Oz: “There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.” Yes, just don those ruby slippers and click them three times after a surviving a tornado then an arduous journey with everything from flying monkeys to witches whilst on a search for a hero who turns out to be a fake, a shy little coward behind a curtain with a small talent for special effects. It took all of that for Dorothy to realize her little farm life was not so bad after all and that she was truly loved and respected by all but one nasty old bat of a troll who, in the end, wasn’t going to take away her beloved puppy. Dorothy didn’t realize that she had an inner circle of family and friends who had her back.
Sound familiar? In loosely monitoring my website traffic for trends from time to time, I see spikes once in a while on my Bullies page. That in itself means I could do more with that page, maybe find another Dean Boudica or Curator to run a support group for players who feel harmed because they’ve found themselves a target in the game for some reason or another. No, I don’t have time to start another turret or tower in this castle of a website; I have a real life job that takes up too much of my time. I do feel bad for the bullied though. Becoming a target is not a difficult thing in a game like War Dragons. Realizing that “it is just a game” is more of a challenge.
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Blessings in disguises
We all have them, but if we realized it, they wouldn’t be disguised now would they? There will be trolls around a bit longer, I have to admit. Until the Mighty One comes down to lift up His own and carry them to Heaven, we will have trolls to deal with. But isn’t part of trolling the element of satisfaction the troll gets from your reaction? I don’t want to seem like I don’t care or feel bad for those of you who are being trolled about the game either in the game, on social media, or a chat app. I can relate. I’ve had everything from animosity to death threats. I kid you not.
But Ms. Alleviates, I’m a good person?! This troll has smashed my ego. Okay, then smash theirs back by not responding and by reporting them. Moving on with your life happily is the most pain I think you can inflict on the troll. They’ll get bored and move on to someone else. Instead of obsessing about how you’re wronged, think about what you have done right this week, this month, this year. You’ve done something good for a few folks I bet, no matter how meagre that might seem to you.
Little deeds are big to Him. You might have helped someone and not even known it, in the game and real life. This is a true story: the other day we were facing some atrocious customer service at a store but trying to be kind about it (“maybe it was the clerk’s first day,” we thought). Guys, we are talking about a fast food drive through and waiting 45 minutes when there were no other cars, we had to pull up to wait, I had to walk inside the store to remind them we were still there, they brought us the wrong orders multiple times, then finally they just handed us a wad of cash and said “Sorry.” A little stupefied (and hungry) we drove away, but it was later the same day we saw a seemingly homeless fellow we have run into in the past a few times. Obviously with cash in hand, we passed it to him, and as usual he tipped his hat and rode off on his bicycle.
What about that person who is always doing something in the background that we take for granted? Every day they make extra preparations at their job to make sure your package is ordered securely so that it survives transit to you. The person who drops your silverware in a restaurant and could just pick it up and give it to you but instead you see return to the kitchen to retrieve fresh. The person you listen to on the radio or from your pew who speaks inspiring words and then shakes your hand farewell for the week as you return to “real life.” The people who sacrifice their time and effort for nothing in return, like the teams in Platinum-whatever-we-are-in-I-forget this week who rallied to save the XP Farm. We might not see all of you again for a long time after this, but we are thankful for you.
Two years ago this month, on a quiet night with my boyfriend whilst watching a movie and sipping a fruity drink, my house flooded suddenly and much of the ceilings fell in. It was 2 days after Christmas. Luckily, my daughter was in another state visiting her grandparents lest part of the ceiling may have well killed her. We were told it would be weeks before the home would be liveable again, and we had to take ourselves and pets to a hotel in the meantime.
At the end of “winter” school vacation, my daughter returned to town homeless. Immediately, a family from our church where my daughter attended school offered a temporary home for my child so she wouldn’t have to try to adjust her life from a happy home to hotel life whilst schooling. That family has devoted pretty much their whole life and way of life to Christ. The mother is a teacher at the church school. The family members have participated in foreign missions for as long as I can remember. One of her oldest daughters was about to graduate and attend Bob Jones University to study early childhood education. Her youngest son was a classmate of my daughter and dear friend to her. Her oldest son, Matthew, had just graduated the same university and was a pastor in South Carolina. He soon after married his high school sweetheart. As of yesterday, they were rejoicing their first child’s one year birthday. This morning, he is dead. He died in a car crash today.
So you tell me, what is more important in life? How much does a troll on a game matter to our family in mourning or their beloved Matthew who lost his young life, mission, family too soon? Why do bad things happen to good people?