Summary: Taken from Chuck Swindolls Living on the Ragged Edge
The story is told of a university library, where there appeared - on the walls - in bold, sprawling letters, about 12” high…two (2) words of graffiti - "APATHY RULES!" Perhaps those words were written by a disillusioned student - a student who has spent endless hours in the pursuit of some intellectual study - only to realize how futile the entire project was.
Bitter is the disillusionment of those who come to the end of their academic pursuits - only to make that discovery - "Apathy Rules!"
Another story is told of a high school teacher who taught high school just long enough to realize that he should not have been teaching high school in the first place! He was assigned to teach a course filled to the brim with students who did not want to learn. In point of fact, it was one of those classes where the student had to arrive early in order to get a back seat! A few of the students got there so late, that they were stuck in the front row! There they sat in their cutoffs and sneakers without sox; and, they could not care less what the subject was.
The high school teacher finally got fed up with their apathy! He grabbed a piece of chalk, whirled around to the chalkboard; and, began to slash away in big, foot-high letters, "A-P-A-T-H-Y!" He underlined the word twice; then, slammed an exclamation point on it that broke the chalk as he hammered it against the chalkboard! One of the dull students up front frowned as he struggled to read the word. Unable to pronounce it, he tilted his head to one side as he started spelling it aloud, "A-P-A-T-H-Y." He mispronounced the word as "A-paythee." Then, he leaned over and muttered to his friend, "What in the world is ’a-paythee’?" His friend yawned back with a sigh, "Who cares?"
Apathy rules and nobody seems to care!
The late American journalist, "H.L." Mencken said; "The basic fact about human experience is not that it is a tragedy, but that it is a bore. It is not that it is predominantly painful; but, that it is lacking in any sense."
Nobody ever said it better than the late philosopher, Henry David Thoreau, "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation."
We simply do not want to believe that! Motivational speakers, people who cheerlead seminars all over this great land of ours, hope that we will not believe it - why?
Because it would blow a hole in their business! The last thing that we are supposed to realize is that we have been lied to most of our lives!
I can right off the top of my head think of at least three falsehoods that many people still call the truth today:
1. "Every day in every way our world is getting better, better, better."
I sure would like to meet the person who first wrote those words, wouldn’t you? I would string him or her up before sundown. What a tragic, disillusioning dream!
2. "There’s a light at the end of every tunnel."
Keep hoping for it - keep looking for it! Murphy was right when he said that the light at the end of the tunnel was really "the headlamp of an oncoming train."
3. "Things are never as bad as they seem. So dream, dream, dream."
This one comes from the pop music world of yesteryear! Things are not really as bad as they seem - they are often worse - and, dreaming won’t make them any better!
I read this past week of a man who looked like he lived every day of his life on top of all circumstances and he never appeared to have a bad day. People who worked with him were often jealous of him and finally one day at a coffee break a co- worker said; “say friend just yesterday I discovered why you are always so happy and on top of things. As I was driving home yesterday I passed you and I saw you sitting there with this beautiful lady whose back was to the street at this romantic “sidewalk café” you and she were sitting so closely and you were listening so intently. The guy leaned over and said; “sir let me tell you the truth. That young lady was really my wife who was telling me that she was leaving me and what looked like a sidewalk café was really our furniture out in the street.
Things aren’t as bad as they seem are they…no there are worse!
So tell me, "Why do they keep telling us those lies? Why do they keep telling us to look for the light at the end of the tunnel?
Why do people conduct great seminars - all around the globe - telling people to smile more - to believe that "there is a bright, beautiful tomorrow" - just grab for it - go for the gusto - hitch your wagon to a star - you will make it someday somehow!"?