Snyder, George L Snyder, Lenore Snyder, God, ethics, morals, religion

The Elephant Speaks
One Man’s Elephant book II

Do, For Your Soul

read a book
go on a picnic
talk to the animals
stand on a mountaintop
eat an apple right from a tree
hold a loved one’s hand while walking
be there for a loved one when it is their time to die
call or write a family member you have not seen for a while
lie on the grass on a summer night and look at the stars
sit on a dock with your feet in the water
help someone without their knowing
listen for God to speak to you
walk through the forest
tell someone a story
feed the birds
write a book

And, God speaks to me:

            “Do! Do something. Bring yourself closer to the universe. Feel, love, hold, laugh. Live!

These are things that expand your soul.

These are things that can make you more than you are.

These are things that can make you better than you are.


            Have you neglected any of these things? Go! Now! Do them!

            Listen to the waves in the water. Listen to the wind blowing the trees. Listen to the world. Listen to the sound of your soul.

            See the waves in the water. See the wind blowing the trees. See the world. See your soul.

            Feel the waves in the water. Feel the wind blowing the trees. Feel the world. Feel your soul.

            Tell your story. Write your story. Others will enjoy hearing your stories. Those who are a couple of generations after you will have an interest in how you succeeded or failed. Remember. Your failures are important life lessons.


            Go ahead, do something just for fun. Maybe just lay the words out into a cute shape. Just for fun. Do something just for the excitement. Do something different in your life. Try something different. One of the things I asked my children was: “Don’t you think I was stupid enough to try that?”

            I was. I still am. I hope to be so - forever.




It may well be

          That I shall die,


But, I do not live

        If I do not try.





And, God speaks to me:


          “What value is eternal life to one who does not use the life they have?




            If you do not use the life you have, why do you think you want eternal life? What value is it to you? If you are unable to even use a hundred years, then how can you use forever? Hindus believe that your next life is created by your actions in your current life. I suppose to them that is what Christians believe as heaven and hell. If you live your life well, then your next life is better. If you live your life poorly, then your next life is worse. Perhaps if you lived with that in mind, if you really believed that, you would live your life as well as you possibly can. Did the ancient Hindu holy men receive a message from God that Christians do not get? There is the message of the wasted talent in the Bible that indicates that you should use that which you have as fully as possible. Look at the beauty around you. Look at the beauty of nature, the earth, the stars, the breeze. Look at the beauty of the people around you. Look at the beauty of your friend and the beauty of your enemy.


            Can you imagine living your life forever just as it is? That includes the boredom, the road to nowhere, the lack of interaction with others that sometimes makes you so lonely, the harsh and cruel words to and from those around you, the mind games that you and others play on each other, the posturing. Those things about your life that you find disagreeable are the things you need to change. The things you need to change NOW!


- Do you imagine that once you are in heaven, you will be perfect?

- How is that to happen?

- Do you imagine that you will cease the things that make others lives less than perfect?

- Is it because you are in the presence of God?

- Will that make a difference in your behavior?

- Will you suddenly be perfect because you are always in the presence of God?

- Do you not realize that you already are always in the presence of God?

- Perhaps if you truly believed that which you claim to believe, you would always be kind to others.

- Perhaps you would always be generous to others.

- Perhaps you would always help others.

- Perhaps you would make heaven here on earth.


            When you make heaven on earth for others, you make heaven on earth for yourself. You cannot make heaven for yourself without making it heaven for others. Do not think otherwise, that is stupid and ignorant.


            When you have a talent, an ability, a gift, whatever; use it! When you have more than you really need, help one who does need. Live your life. Take care of your soul and build your heaven. The temptation is to just depend on God’s grace and neglect the idea that you are responsible for your own salvation. It is not God’s job to drag you kicking and screaming to salvation. It is your job to joyously embrace the opportunities given to you. This includes the opportunities offered by others as well as those offered by God.


- The stories are that everyone is perfect in heaven.

- The stories are that everything is perfect in heaven.

- What faults do you have?

- Do you sometimes say unkind things?

- How is God going to make you not say unkind things?

- Is God going to interfere with your free will just because you are in heaven? Even the angels have free will.

- How is God going to make you perfect?

- The things you do are habitual and you do them without thought.


            Live your life as though you were already in heaven. I know that is not realistic, but try it. Enjoy the beautiful things. Do the kind things. See the glorious sights. Love your family. Love your friends. Love your enemies. Do not hold grudges. Forgive all, no matter what.




            If you do not practice heaven, how do you know you will be able to fit once you are there. Behave as though you are already in heaven. If you do, you may find that you already are in heaven. Perhaps if you do not behave as though you are in heaven, you may find that your behavior is more fitting for someplace else.


            When you leave this life, what are you able to keep? The only things possible are your morals, your ethics, your values, your soul. God is good and will place you where you fit best. Will these things fit you in heaven? Will you be uncomfortable if you cannot do the things you currently do? What is going to stop you?


            Is God going to put a lock on your mouth so you cannot say those unkind things? Will your mouth just refuse to work? Will your vocal cords just freeze? That isn’t heaven! That is hell! Those around you will be saying nice things. You will not be able to curse. They will be in heaven because they don’t have to listen to your foul language. You will be in hell because you cannot use that language.


            God will not remove your free will from you. God will not prevent you from using any language you choose. God will just place you where things like your language are acceptable. Perhaps other unpleasant things will be acceptable there too.


            In your life, you build your heaven or hell. When you do something good, when you avoid something evil, you move yourself closer to God. When you do something evil, when you avoid something good, you move yourself farther from God.


            God is good. If you wish to continue to use certain language, when your time is over, God will place you with others who use that language. If you do not wish to be generous with your worldly goods, God will place you with others of like kind. God is good. If you wish to keep your prejudices, your hate, your contempt for those who are less than you; He will allow you to keep them. He will place you where you can still continue to be what you are. God will not change your soul. If you enjoy making those cutting remarks, God will not remove that from your soul. If you enjoy violence, God will not remove that from your soul. If you do not desire to forgive, God will not remove that from your soul. Your soul is yours. Only you can bring your soul closer to God. Only you can move your soul farther from God.

            If you take advantage of others, those weaker than you, God will place you with others of like kind. Some will be better (worse) at it than you. God is good. He will place you where you fit best.


            In chapter 20 of Revelation, it says nothing about faith when it speaks of your last judgement. It only speaks of justice based on your behavior.


            When you die, you take you with you. That is your heaven or hell. You will be forever with you. You better make sure you are what you wish to spend eternity with.


Pray and hope:

The mercy of God will not give you what you do deserve.

The grace of God will give you what you do not deserve.


Perhaps God will give you justice.





            If this chapter does not bring thought and concern to your mind, you need to think about it until it does. You need to think about it until it causes you to examine your behavior. Nothing is just plain simple. You have responsibility. The elephant is like a great snake. And it is right there - watching you - all the time.



Do not fall prey to the serpent.


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