I have always wanted to go to the Badlands. We loved it. You can’t help but think about time when you look at those strange sand castle mountains, seeing the different layers of sediment. Scientists say that some of the layers are over 50 million years old. Regardless of the correctness of the dates, one begins to think about the fact that we all have such a brief time here, that eventually our earthly molecules will reform into other things. It can make one sad or lighthearted, I suppose. The thought makes me lighthearted; many of the concerns in my brief life won’t matter hereafter. “Serve your Maker, and be merry, and give not for this life a cherry,” an old poet said. I heard that someone wanted to give the Badlands a different name–Wonderland. He reasoned that no one would want to go to a place called Badlands. But now language has changed. Badlands are “bad” in the best sense of the word.
It is worth it to drink a cup of coffee and look at this land. I may have mentioned before my favorite quote for this leg of the journey. I have been reading Abraham Joshua Heschel. He states that beauty and grandeur are not anonymous. Looking at this kind of beauty makes you think about something, or Someone else.
Such reflection points me back to leadership. Tennyson somewhere says something like this–“Our little systems have their day, they have their day and cease to be, they are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O Lord, art more than they.” The leader that focuses on systems rather than God may only be temporarily effective. Let’s see what it all looks like in 50 million years.
Upside Down Leadership