I’ve heard the term more than once in my life, “It’s just water over the dam”. I’ve never really given it much thought until this morning when I drove by a local dam on the way to an eye appointment and started thinking about the water going over the dam and how it relates to our mind and soul.
The water over the dam is life experiences traveling over the dam. They are here one moment and gone the next. As they go over the dam they can become useful and generate energy in our lives. For those who hold onto negative life experiences and don’t let go they can cause flooding into other areas of their lives. I was reminded of this at a family gathering this past weekend.
The mother of three daughters and one son lived a very simple life in a home that she raised her family. Her husband and son died years ago and she has been gone for 20 years. The youngest of the three daughters died nearly five years ago and yet her mother’s home stands untouched inside since her death. The two remaining daughters unable to empty it because they can’t decide who should get what in the home. It seems over time that one daughter received more from her mother in her lifetime than the other so apparently she should be entitled to less. Instead of making a decision they have let the home’s roof rot and the belongings be destroyed by water and rodents. Where is the sense in this? There is nothing in my home that would cause me to sacrifice a family relationship over a material belonging.
Perhaps it would make more sense if the mother actually had some items of value but she slept in single bed that she moved into her kitchen each fall where there was a space heater. She would put up plastic to block off the small bedroom and livingroom to conserve energy. She grew a garden every summer to supply most of her nutritional needs. She didn’t own a car and most of her furnishings in her home were from the 1940’s and sparse at that. There are two small bedrooms upstairs that have a few boxes of personal items in them. She was legally blind and frugal her entire life. Her bedroom still has the clothes hanging in the closet. Any items in the home could have been used by someone in need years ago if they had been donated but instead selfishness and pettiness overruled generosity.
Its time to reassess what is really important in this world and what is worth preserving. People or material things. God gave us friends and family to enrich our lives. People to help us celebrate our achievements and encourage and support us through our failures and difficult times. How tragic to sacrifice personal relationships for material things that will deteriorate over time no matter who has possession of them. Let some water over your dam that has been flooding other areas of your life and move on to a better life. Less is truly better than more.
May 10, 2010 at 1:48 pm
I couldn’t agree more with your comments about what is worth preserving. Too many seem to value things over people, things that, like the objects in the house you mentioned, have been pretty much destroyed by petty neglect and foolishness. I’ve always said that if my kids feel a need to fight over anything I may leave behind, I’d sooner that item be burned than to have them argue over some material thing!