I passed another tangled iguana carcass on the road today. There he lay, twisted and bloated, flattened in places, tire tracks decorating his thick hide. It got me to thinking how in those moments before his death, that that poor iguana had functioned exactly as he was designed.
His design is among the oldest on our earth. His kind have survived because, although primitive, they are effective. Their design is tried and true. I tried to picture the confidence on his face at the last instant of his life. “I got this,” he thought, as he stared down the barrel of fate, sure that his ancestors throughout the millions of years evolution would protect him. “I have not just prepared for this instant all my life,” he thought, “but for all of existence.”
“Bring it,” he breathed.
And then BAM, it was all over, his spine twisted, the vegetation of his gut splattered this way and that.
What went wrong? He stood his ground. He can’t be chased, because he wasn’t running. That big thing will stop, give me a sniff and then I will whip him with my tail, make a menacing sound and he will leave. Or perhaps I will climb a tree. But no, this time the big thing did not stop. The big thing came barreling down with nary a thought of satisfying its belly. In fact, it seemed not to notice me at all.
What do we do when our preparation does not yield the desired results, when it becomes irrelevant, when we function as designed for an environment that no longer exists?