The warning was a blunt as my mother’s used to be growing up. “The perverse travel a dangerous road, potholed and mud-slick; if you know what’s good for you, stay clear of it.” (Proverbs 22.5) Not that it did me much good. Something about following good advice has never seem to be consistent with who I am.
Warning signs can cause one to wake up and take stock, but it does not seem to be long lasting. Human tragedies; death, diseases that defy a cure, and relationship terminations at mirror the world’s end, can help one to focus on the priorities in life. Yet these events and forces in and of themselves do not seem to make long-term change permanent. It is as if one’s value system is what it is and eventually it comes back into focus and primacy.
The experiences that come from my hand help shape one priorities, but do not seem to determine it. Success, failure, and the muddling in between seem form the core of what drives change on the inside; yet there is more. I do not seem to change, at least fundamentally, because of what happens in life around and to me.
Disciplines can be very helpful; moving one tentatively from one place to another. The challenge comes when, in the end, they fail to make a real difference in whom and what constitutes “me”; I am virtually the same post disciplines that I was when I began.
Somewhere, somehow everything is changing. I want to be focused, in-control, and moving towards a destination I want to be at. Is there anything or anybody that can help?
The simple answer is yes, there is. The challenge is that the answer requires me to give up, let go, and start as a child. I will not be in control, I will not be sure of where I am going to plant every step, and life will be full of ups and downs. Yet, I can make a choice. That is the moment when everything turns; I can make a choice.