Don’t ever get so busy chasing the wrong things that you miss enjoying the right things.
When I was 20 and lost in the shuffle, I remember a conversation with my dad. The usual 20something conversation, where I stress about school and jobs and why Adam ate the fruit, condemning us to a life of sin. when your 20 everything is very pressing and you need answers to these insurmountable life questions. Luckily my dad has lived through 20, and gained a fair amount of insight and understanding along the way. That day, he told me that whatever I want out of life, the whole universe will conspire in giving it to me. I don’t think that my dad has read Paul Coelho, but it’s the same philosophy. That when you set your mind on something, and you feel it in your bones, don’t ignore that desire – instead focus on it and life will give it to you. I believe that, and I believe God puts desires in our hearts for a reason.
I have so many dreams for life, so many things I want to achieve and feel and see and have. Sometimes, we get stuck in a place of complacency and are blinded by mundaneness- and we don’t even realize it until someone pulls the plug on it and your left with yourself. That’s what happened yesterday when I was let go from my position. At first it was shock and and anger, but then it was relief and excitement. I loathed that position and the management and the wasted time trapped behind a computer screen.It was as though I had been delivered from all the bullshit that weighed me down Monday through Friday. Within an hour I was offered another position at my neighbors law firm, then I was Spring cleaning in Fall and blasting Against Me! and all the sudden it felt like the old Me had risen from the depths of complacency and elevated into that 20something state of possibility.
And it feels so good.
A couple days ago an old friend texted me, reminiscing about our youth, our adventure, our passion for life. He says he just hit 30 and misses how life used to inspire him and move him. How excited we used to be about everything.
I said I know.
I said when I get bored and complacent, I try to think of my life as a story. And ask myself,
is this a story anyone would want to read?
I would want to read?
Because if you think about it, our lives are all just stories. A series of events told in our perspective, through our lenses, shaped by our experiences. And no one else can play our part, no one else can tell our story. We are such unique, amazing beings.
And we experience SO much. Through the years and every day, there has been so much said
We have endless material to choose from (and to create).
The authors of the bible had this same opportunity. The bible is an accumulation of stories, told by different people, passed down orally for years, and then finally edited and written for consumption. As Rob Bell puts it, they weren’t just writing, they were selecting and editing and making a multitude of decisions about what material and content furthered their purposes in writing and what didn’t.
And I think we do the same. Every day. We tell stories and we remember certain things because they moved us in some way. Sometimes we hold on to stories and we retell and we relive it because it was so amazing, so good, so powerful.
And sometimes we hold on to the painful stories, the hurtful things, all the ways the world has turned its back on us, all the people that have thrown stones at us.
The stories we tell say a lot about us. They can say, my life has been beautiful and full. And they can say I am hurt and vengeful. I think the stories we share tell more about us and who we are, then about the story itself. I am becoming more aware of that. I am trying to be more intentional about the stories I tell and if they are furthering my purpose and my values, or if they are cheap, gossip filled stories that have nothing of value to me and what I am about.