close to the vest“What’s wrong with you, man?” He asked with a touch of humor.

“High mileage!” I chuckled.

“Yeah – I hear ya’!” He said, laughing in agreement and a sort of empathy. It’s our heritage to laugh when things get tough. It’s the unspoken words – the things that aren’t said that really say it all. If someone were to eavesdrop on one of the conversations I have with my brothers, even though this day was on the phone, they wouldn’t have a clue about the reality and depth of the code language we speak… or don’t, rather.

I don’t think it’s a stretch here to say that many of us speak the secret code language, yet expect everyone to know what we really mean. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all bad to speak the code language or keep our cards close to the vest so to speak, at least to a point.

My hat’s off to the previous generations that were strong hearted and didn’t wear their hearts on their sleeves. They taught us to speak the secret code, but I think they might have pulled it off with more sincerity and a better perspective. They were disciplined in their communication for the benefit of others.

My brother asked in a joking manner, but the direct question started a code laden conversation that only he and I and some select people within our messed up world might be able to translate. Here’s the translated secret code language broken down. (translation in italics)

“What’s wrong with you, man?” (Are you going to be alright? – I’m worried about you!”)

“High mileage!” Chuckling…  (I’m not sure, I have to have some tests, I’m apprehensive – I don’t know what they might find.)

“Yeah, I hear ya!” (Man, I’m older than you – I know exactly how you feel – I hope you and I both are alright.)

Not all people share the same belief that God is in control of all things. We know tomorrow isn’t promised to any of us, but if we are called to go, we’re ready. We jest in difficult times from our learning, habit, and heritage of being a man who God calls to be strong and dependent on Him… but there is a time for us to be more open and honest, not to leave others half guessing if they interpreted the code correctly.

I think it shows more confidence in God and our own security in Him when we share truth in vulnerability. The lost world jests in their insecurity and fear. They wear a facade to show the world that they’re strong. If they don’t know God that’s not strength, that’s foolishness.

We have hope, which means confidence in where we land on the other side. The lost world uses the word “hope” in a way that implies a “wish” or “wishing.” Wishes are for children and wishing wells… Leaves in the wind have more confidence… and hope…

“Call me tomorrow when you’re done.” My brother said. I knew he wanted to make sure I was alright. The next day I called him I was a bit more direct, I dropped the code language… “They were non-cancerous, but it runs in our family… and if you have them it’s only a matter of time until they become cancerous…. Bobby, you need to get checked. Okay?”

“Yeah, okay… I will…” He answered.

There’s a time to play our cards close to the vest… and then there are times when we need to lay em’ all out on the table…