I would like to believe that if I work hard enough, I succeed. I hope that if I am smart and disciplined that I will reach my goal(s). I think that I can do anything, translated I will win. When I think these thoughts, I am not a bright man.
The reality I know is very different.
I know others that are able to work with more intensity and for longer period than I can. Sometimes they succeed. Sometimes they do not. I know many men and women that are smarter and more disciplined than I will ever be. Occasionally they reach their goals. Just as often, they do not. Even when I am at my best, others win because of their strengths.
The world you and I live in is very harsh. It would be devastating if there was only one who faced failure, me. The fact is that the problem has been with us for generations. Even “when Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, [then] Paul was able to give all his time to preaching and teaching, doing everything he could to persuade the Jews that Jesus was in fact God’s Messiah. But no such luck.” (Acts 18.5) Paul had no recorded success – zip, nada, nothing. He failed.
Being driven is in my nature. The question I keep reminding myself of is this. What am I driven to do? As I updated a colleague on what has been going on in my life, I discovered that we were walking similar paths. Even as I struggled with my need to win, I spoke to him of balance. When I talked of the lessons having a brain tumor provides, I found myself questioning the choices I am making.
As today dawns, I am boarding a plane for a hectic trip. Even in this chaos, I can focus. I can be present wherever I find myself. I can care about those where I am, as well as others present in my mind. I can choose where I place my attention. I can be driven by compassion.