One of the Classic Blunders (January 12, 2012)

…Opening To…

Sonny, true love is the greatest thing in the world — except for a nice MLT — mutton, lettuce and tomato sandwich, where the mutton is nice and lean and the tomato is ripe. They’re so perky, I love that. (Miracle Max, The Princess Bride)

…Listening In…

Buttercup: And to think, all that time it was your cup that was poisoned.
Man in Black: They were both poisoned. I spent the last few years building up an immunity to iocane powder.

…Filling Up…

The two lines above conclude one of the two most famous scenes in The Princess Bride. (The other is the fight that begins with, “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya…”). Of course, I’m talking about the “Battle of Wits.” The Man in Black has already bested Inigo at fencing and Fezzik at hand fighting, and now he comes upon Vizzini sitting calmly with a picnic spread before him and a knife at Buttercup’s throat. The Man in Black and Vizzini find themselves at an impasse, so they have the Battle of Wits, in which Vizzini must discover which cup of wine contains the poison.

His dizzying intellect whirs into high gear, and even though he cheats by switching the glasses, he ends up laughing until he suddenly dies. He never makes the mental leap that the Man in Black might have poisoned both cups in order to ensure that Vizzini doesn’t end up killing Buttercup. He doesn’t think that the Man in Black might sacrifice himself so that Buttercup could be safe. Of course, the Man in Black has an immunity to the poison, so he’s not quite as noble as I’m making him out to be. But still.

Vizzini operates under an assumption – that the Man in Black wants to kidnap what he (Vizzini) has rightfully stolen. And this assumption kills Vizzini. He thinks he knows everything or can deduce everything. He is wrong. Sometimes, especially in my low moments, I make assumptions about God. I assume that God can’t possibly be in this situation or that crisis. And it kills me – not physically, mind you, or else I wouldn’t be typing this, but spiritually. The minute I assume God hasn’t or isn’t going to show up is the minute I stop looking for God’s presence.

Perhaps you’ve had similar times in your life. It’s at these times that I have to remember that both cups of wine were poisoned. I have to remember that God is in every situation. And I have to remember never to get involved in a land war in Asia.

…Praying For…

Dear God, you permeate all of existence, including mine, even when I don’t acknowledge you. Help me to practice seeking your presence so that I may get better at finding it. In Jesus Christ’s name I pray. Amen.

…Sending Out…

I leave this moment with you, God, knowing that yours is the truest love in the world and that not even death can stop true love.

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