Monday, March 31, 2008

That Inner Struggle Thing

I shouldn't have done it, but how do you say no to Braum's?

I live in Gallup, New Mexico . . . 12 miles from the Arizona border and 500 miles away from the nearest Braum's. For the uninitiated, Braum's is a hamburger and ice cream joint based in and near the state of Oklahoma. Anyone who has ever called Oklahoma home is a Braum's addict, and that definitely includes me. There were a few years there where Braum's burgers and ice cream were staples of my diet . . . and the proof is there for anyone to see!!!

I have been away from Oklahoma for nearly 5 years, so I've been going through Braum's withdrawal. I've spent the past 9 days in and around Oklahoma (south-central Kansas where I am now at is also Braum's country) . . . and so, I've been making up for lost time! There seems to be a Braum's on every corner in Oklahoma City, Tulsa, and Wichita . . . I haven't made it to all of them in the past week, but I've done my best!

I told myself tonight that today would be Braum's free . . . my body needed a break. But . . . I relented . . . I gave in . . . and quickly gobbled up a double dip chocolate chip-peanut butter cup waffle cone! It was wonderful! All that I had expected! For about 30 minutes!!! Then, reality set in, and now I have a killer headache from too much sugar, and I'm sure those calories are up to no good :-).

Isn't that the way with sin? Often the temptation to indulge in improper behavior . . . to do what we know is wrong and will likely result in harmful circumstances . . . becomes too much (at least in our way of thinking) and we give in and do what we should have avoided. Initially, it seems that the lies of temptation are indeed true . . . what fun! . . . we feel great! . . . best time of our life! . . . top of the world! . . . then reality sets in and everything comes crashing down. Sin is fun for a moment . . . perhaps many years of moments, but there is an end to the fun. Reality cannot be held at bay forever. There will be an accounting. Eating a Braum's double-dip ice cream cone will result in a few hours of discomfort and a few extra pounds, but giving into more serious temptations will result in much more serious and life-affecting consequences.

We learn from our mistakes . . . from those moments when we let down our guard and allow those temptations to take over . . . moments when sanity departs us and self-destructive reasoning and behavior creep in. Or, at least we should. The consequences of bad actions should teach us to avoid the same trap the next time. If we are paying attention. If we do not become so deadened to cause and effect that we do not grow.

Tomorrow will be Braum's free!!! I hope :-).