When I was a young kid, we had just three TV stations: 2,7 and 9. We even had to stand up, walk to the TV, and change the channel!!!
I realised there was a different reality when I was in Thoreau, NM, USA. I was living in the middle of the desert, and I had satellite TV. There were 256 stations. It was a cure for which there was no disease.
Choices! Choices! Choices!
We have unlimited choices being thrown at us, like unguided missiles. And it doesn’t always work. If I have this, I can’t have that. We worry about how much we have missed out on and, maybe, will continue to miss out on.
I was talking to a young friend of mine. He spoke of FOMO: The fear of missing out. He had so much to choose from that he didn’t know what to do. He changes his job every two or so years. He moves cities at the same rate. He has a very understanding wife!
I spoke to him of my principle: JOMO: the joy of missing out. Sometimes it is great to realise the pot of gold we have at our very own feet, without having to chase rainbows whenever we choose and wherever they go.
To update the old saying, we can have anything we want. We just can’t have everything we want.
Of course, sometimes it is right for us to shake the dust of unwelcome places and people.
The guests in our gospel story today had a choice. To follow one would be to leave another behind, at least for the moment. To follow one would give an opportunity that the other does not have. Which path is calling me to the fullness of life?
In the words of Carlos Castaneda, “Look at every path closely and deliberately, then ask ourselves this question: Does this path have a heart? If it does, then the path is good. If it doesn’t, then it is of no use.” (The Teachings of Don Juan)
Peter Gardiner is a Passionist priest from Sydney. Presently he is in Indonesia, teaching English to our Passionist students