Have you ever sat down to write a blog post without having much of an idea what you wanted to write about?

That’s kind of what this is. I’ve been sitting back since the first of the year, just observing, contemplating, making few comments on events and situations. It seems the situations I used to have things to say about have turned into situations where my “wisdom” is now escaping me. There are now people who read this blog, or who read what I put on Facebook, or on discussion boards, about whom I used to be willing to make comments, but about whom I feel I need to be much more careful in my commenting. I don’t want to offend old friends and classmates.

What was it Yogi Berra said, something like you can observe a lot just by watching, or you can see a lot by observing, or something…

I ran into a couple high school classmates over the weekend. I hadn’t seen either of them for several years at least. Both are now divorced; both seem to have mellowed and matured. One is still unmarried, the other is now married to a pastor and is living a rich faith in Jesus Christ. But it’s neat to see how people change and mature over the years.

I remember one kid I knew back in high school; he was always kind of rough around the edges, dressed in blue jeans and flannel shirts and talked like a backwoodsman. I ran into him some fifteen years after we graduated. I was amazed how articulate and self-confident he had become! The two classmates I ran into yesterday impressed me much the same way.

It seems there are things we go through that are very painful, horribly painful, at the time, but that make us wiser, more mellow and mature when we have left them behind in our past. They change us in ways that make us live on a deeper level. We’re not so shallow any more. And I wish it didn’t take such events in our lives to do that to us, but it clearly does. We’re sadder but wiser.

I guess it’s like in other areas of our lives — there’s no substitute for experience, and sadly, that experience is often painful. But it brings us a “crown of glory” in the end.