Archive for September, 2010



When we feel trapped by the pressures of life, our first thought may be
to run away from all that pain, as hard and as fast as we can. We who try
to run discover that we bring our ‘selves’ along – the same ‘selves’ that
got us into the mess in the first place. At that point we need to look
within and try to understand who or what we are running from. Is it just
life’s problems, or are we also fleeing our responsibilities to God? As we
run we seek a place to hide from ourselves, and God. In time we become
aware that we can’t run forever, and this knowledge forces us to attempt
some resolution to the problems that prompted us to make that mad
dash. Our fears will keep us trapped if we don’t face them and exorcise
them. It’s ironic that we can call upon the spirit of the Creator – the same
God we are attempting to hide from – to help us overcome our fears.



At some point in our life we get to a place where we make the decision
to risk all that we have, for a chance to get something we want. It’s so
much easier to risk it all when ‘all’ we have is “nothing at all.”
It really is a lot more difficult to risk everything when you are
encumbered by possessions you fear losing, if you fail. It’s probably one
of the few times you will feel lucky in having nothing. When you have
achieved your goal (whatever it is you risked it ‘all’ for), you can look
back at that decision and be grateful. Having ‘something’ may have
prevented you from taking a chance on getting what you wanted in the
first place. Your courage to take the risk came from not having anything
to lose.



It can’t be emphasized too often, that who we are today is the sum total
of all our experiences and the decisions we made in the past. Some of
us suddenly see who we have become, and this picture is not to our liking,
so we look around for someone to blame. If we have turned out fine
we often forget the help we got, and think we achieved this all by ourselves.
Whether we want to acknowledge it or not, none of us gets
through life entirely under our own steam. As we get older we should
know that we have been in charge of our own lives much longer than
anyone else. We therefore have to take the lion share of the responsibility
for whether this life has been a success, or a failure. Life is indeed a
journey, influenced not only by the decisions we make, but also by
the predisposing factors that lead us to make those decisions.
The direction this journey takes changes from day to day.



It’s said that there are no mistakes in life, but when we are on the
receiving end of some horrible mishap, the last thing we need to hear is
that brand of philosophy. So many of the lessons we learn in life are
from either our own mistakes or those of the people around us.
Although many of us acquire our knowledge through positive
reinforcement, few of us forget the shame or humiliation that often
accompanies mistakes. The lessons learned in those moments are seldom
forgotten. Whether you view mistakes in a positive or a negative light is
of little importance. The important fact is that there is much to be
learned, whether we can come to accept that or not. The benefits we can
gain from our mistakes make us wonder if we misunderstood their
purpose in our lives, and that their primary function is to teach.

September 2010
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