Guy Walks Into a Bar…

There are plenty of internet sites with ‘guy walks into a bar’ jokes.  Most of the jokes are either mean or dirty or both.  I have a couple of favorites, though, that are not bad.

Guy walks into a bar with jumper cables around his neck.  Bartender says, “Okay, I’ll serve you.  Just don’t start anything.”

Here’s my second favorite:

Rene Descartes walks into a bar.  Bartender says, “Can I get you a drink?”  Descartes say, “I think not.”  And he disappears.

Descartes was a seventeenth century French philosopher.   He is credited with the development of the Cartesian coordinate system (way to go Rene) and he is called the father of analytical geometry (Dude).  But he is surely most famous for his statement cogito ergo sum (That’s Latin.  I think.)  In English it’s I Think, Therefore I Am.  Hence the hilarious joke above.

Descartes determined that he would get down to the facts he knew for certain, not assumed or picked up from tradition or the teaching or the influence of others.  And that’s what he came up with.  The only thing he knew was that since he was thinking he must exist.

I know there’s a lot more to it than that.  I know there are those who make a career out of studying Descartes’ philosophies.  But I think that statement is as far as I want to go.

So where am I going with this?  I know where I was going with this but now that I’m here I realize the next step is a big one.  Hold on.

We all do things from time to time that we would not want anybody else to know about.  Well maybe not you but I do.  We think that as long as we manage to keep it private then we’re none the worse for it.  But the Bible says ‘you may be sure your sin will find you out.’  Does that mean whatever we are doing will come to light?  Maybe not.  Maybe it’s more subtle than that.  Look at it this way.  What we do in private, in spite of our efforts otherwise, will color our public lives.  Our private deeds will influence our deeds done in front of others.

Let’s go a step further.  What we think in private (Hold on Rene.  We’re going to get back to you.) will influence our public actions.  It’s inevitable.  ‘As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.’

So let’d determine to run from the actions and thoughts that trip us up.  Okay that will work for a while but eventually you will find that you can run as long and hard as you can but when you sit down to rest that stuff will be sitting beside you.  Nature, and the mind, abhors as vacuum.  So what’s to be done?

Paul said this to the Philippians:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.

Wow.  That will take some doing.  In these days of internet and cable where you can easily hear the worse of every person and every event?  How do you do that?  I think the first thing you do is begin to associate with others who think the way Paul says to think.

Because it’s what you think that matters.  It’s how you think that matters.  It’s too important to just let it happen.

So now back to Mr. Descartes.  What was it he said?  “I think, therefore I am…”


About Angus Lewis

My wife and I lived our whole lives in Arkansas until ten years ago. We moved to the Kansas City area in 2011 (a job change). That was the reason for the 'From a Far Country' title. Our children and grandchildren were in Arkansas. Six months ago we sold our house and bought one in Sherwood, Arkansas and my wife moved back down here. Two weeks ago I retired and moved back too. (I'm probably going to try to find something part time to keep me out of trouble.) So maybe the 'From a Far Country' title is not so much of a fit anymore. But I think I'll stick with it. I'm still not home. Not yet. The Bible says we are all strangers and pilgrims here. Our real home is with God and some day we'll be there. We'll be home.
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2 Responses to Guy Walks Into a Bar…

  1. manoahswife says:

    Hope you don’t mind–posted this to my Facebook page. A good reminder. Thanks.

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