Friday, September 4, 2009

Beware of Bears

With no particular agenda in mind, I channel-surfed my way through a number of T.V. stations before deciding upon a movie; one that was already in progress. At first I thought it was a National Geographic special given its Alaskan backdrop. Before long, I was captivated with curious awe. I sat revited for the next hour or two.
From the very first moments of Grizzly Man I had the sense that nothing good was going to come to the man featured in the film, Timothy Treadwell. For all of his naturalist views and, in particular, his love of and advocacy for grizzly bears, he was a man whoses hinges seemed perilously loose.

When the movie ended it left me with more questions than it had answered. So I set about gathering more information that might better equip me to understand the horrible fate that consumed Timothy, literally. There just had to be more to the story than the photo footage and drama depicted on screen.
There's a lot that is good about this true saga. The beauty of Alaska's wilds, the clever charm of the little foxes, and even the brute beauty of the grizzly. I enjoyed gathering tidbits of knowledge about Katmai, and about the Grizzly Maze.
There's also a lot - a whole lot - that's tragic about the story too. Certainly Timothy's life and travails were myriad and complex, but what nagged me most is this: He saw himself as one of them; one of the grizzlies. He wasn't content to be in their world; he insisted upon being of their world.
That distinction is what nagged me most. It had such a familiar ring.
Timothy, like anyone coming and going in close proximity to grizzly habitat had been warned; and warned again. He'd been discouraged rather than applauded for his undertakings. His singular will was naive at best; and a death-wish at worst. It cost him his life.
I have reflected on the story of Timothy Treadwell many times since discovering it that fateful day in 2005. It has become an object lesson - a modern day parable - that reminds me of the need for vigilance as I go about the business of living.
The minute I begin seeing myself of the world is the minute I am no longer safe in it.
If you belonged to the world,
it would love you as its own.
As it is, you do not belong to the world,
but I have chosen you
out of the world..
John 15:19
We have not received the spirit
of the world but the Spirit who is
from God, that we may understand
what God has freely given us.
1 Corinthians 2:12
... don't you know that friendship
with the world is hatred toward God?
Anyone who chooses to be a friend
of the world becomes
an enemy of God.
James 4:4



Andrea said...


Melinda said...

What a great parallel between Timothy's fate and ours, if we allow ourselves to arrogantly get a little too close to the wildlife, or wild life. Guess that works both ways!

I've missed my time over here, Kathleen. Forgive my absence, won't you?


Denise @ A Sacred Longing said...

I, too, remember this story.

A very wise warning beyond the obvious.


Beth E. said...

What a tragic story about Timothy Treadwell. I've watched part of that show before, but have never sat through the entire thing.

I wonder sometimes about the desire of so many to be of the world. Where does that desire come from? Is it ignorance or insecurity? Misguided ambition? Are people drawn toward the wordly by greed, self-centeredness, and/or pride? Maybe it's: (D) All of the above. I don't know for sure.

What I do know is that it's not my intention to be worldly. I'm not perfect, though (I guess THAT'S an understatement). I stumble from time to time.

Thanks for sharing your heart,'ve given me a lot to think about!

Have a great weekend...don't feed any bears!

a portland granny said...

This is a very sobering warning--good picture of a situation which all too often captures us at times. Now I will have to look this guy up and read about him, since I hadn't heard of him.

Terri Tiffany said...

Awesome analogy! Have never quite looked at it this way--our being in the world. I never heard of this man before--it was like he wasn't content with who God made him to be.

MOMSWEB said...

Good always.

Saleslady371 said...

This is an excellent word for us, Kathleen. It is so very dangerous to buy into the world's plan in any facet. I consider myself warned as by a good friend.

Just a little something from Judy said...

I appreciate how you think through things, events, happenings. I like how you can apply the real story to real life. You truly do have insight into God's Word that is a blessing to me. I did not see this movie, but I have been with many that have. Your insight is the most refreshing that I have heard. How easily we can be pulled in. God lovingly reminds me so often, that this world is not my home...I am just passing through. Great post!

Shirl said...

A thought-provoking analogy!

Denise said...

Amen, amen.

Heart2Heart said...


I stopped by here after reading such an inspirational guest post you did on Lisa Shaw's blog.

All I can say, is where have you been that I have not found you until today? It must be God's divine timing because I love not only what you shared there on her blog, but what you wrote today.

I would be a fool not to follow you because I believe you have a heart of gold formed after God's own heart. You messages are inspirational and well as thought provoking and I am honored to have found such a gem like you in this life.

If you get a change please stop by for a visit and hopefully join in my family!

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Robin @ Be Still and Know said...

Great observations!! It just is another confirmation that God's plan for how things are supposed to work is best. Anytime we try to alter his design things usually go very wrong1


BECKY said...

Hi Kathleen! I just came over from Lisa's blog to say HI and thank you for your wonderful post!

I remember very clearly a day when I was a babe in Christ that God showed me I no longer was part of the world. When I realized what that meant my heart took great solace in knowing where my true home is. Thanks be to God!

Hope you have a great Labor day, and a blessed week!!

Lea said...

Hello Kathleen,
I have been completely blessed reading you this evening!

In the world and not of the world.... ~ oh how that spoke to me tonight. It was nothing new in my spirit but so timely to be reminded of this.

Blessings to you sweet sister in Christ,


Beth E. said...

I just read your post over at Lisa's. I was telling her that our pastor preached on this verse this morning:

"If you want to be my disciple … don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it?" Luke 14:26-28

I love it when God confirms a message!

You did a great job, Sassy...I like your legacy, particularly the "Stop taking yourself so seriously." I can definitely relate to that one. We laugh a lot in our household!

Beth E. said...

P.S. What happened to your Babel post?

P.P.S. Just so ya know, I'm going to use the word "behoove" in a conversation tomorrow. That's just a fun word to say, and after reading it in your post over at Lisa's, I've decided to give it a whirl. Wish me luck...a gal could get shot talkin' fancy like that around here! LOL

lisasmith said...

Popped in from Lisa's to meet you...Hi, I'm lisa and it's so nice to meet you!

Love the lessons, love the trail you're leaving for many to follow and am gonna love getting to know you!


Jensmere said...

Hi Kathleen...hopped over to visit from Lisa's place. So nice to meet you! I enjoyed reading your posts and can see that you are a sweet sister in the Lord!

Be blessed,

christy rose said...

To remember that we are in this world but not of it, keeps our lives in the proper perspective. We are here to represent a higher way of living not succumb to this one.