My cousin Carol was a sweet, innocent girl. She was loving and conventional, hardly a mean bone in her body. But when another cousin of mine decided to take his mother and brothers from Ohio to live in Florida, her temper flared. After the move, I heard her say, with narrowed eyes, "I'll never forgive him for moving!" He even committed the sin of taking his family with him!
At the time he wanted to open a tackle shop and fish endlessly. After the move I went on a fishing trip with him, way down in the keys at Rock Harbor. I caught a grouper, which we had for supper that night.
I was just a lad, but I saw no dishonor in the move, nor in my cousin. He had become a medic, and later an instructor. But he had committed a terrible act in the eyes of many in our clan. He had broken up the family. He had acted on his own.
We were worker bees, doing our jobs, living in a neighborhood where we had been born and would die. We went to a local church and went through all the rituals and listened to church propaganda. My father's motto: "Never read books, they're bad for you. Let the experts tell you about the deep things. That's what we pay them for."
Even as a child, I rebelled at this. I too, wanted to leave. Not to go to Florida, but mentally. I was being fitted for my role as a black sheep, not that anyone cared, as long as I stayed in the area.
Religion was not our thing, nor was any Bible study. Ignorance of such a thing was a positive virtue. Success was getting a good job. The most successful in the job market were the least religious. Some were atheists.
As a young man I wanted no more than a subsistence income, with lots and lots of books. Funny, but that's the way it turned out. Poor guy, he never amounted to anything. True, but I had the books, secular at first, but later, after my conversion, the Bible.
I never impressed my family. All I wanted was to think of the deepest things I knew of. Soon I will find out if it worked. After my nap, I will see if God approves of what I tried to do.