Thursday, February 20, 2014

streams of thought...february 20th, 2014

"Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are." Bernice Johnson Reagon.

I am learning an interesting lesson here in Denver. The lesson is this. I should never expect to know what the weather is going to be like within the same day let alone one day to the next. We had beautiful sunny 60 degree weather throughout the day yesterday; however, around 8 pm it started to snow.

Learning the art of never really knowing what to expect seems to fit in all other areas of life, too.

So, let me ask this question. How are our beginning of the year commitments coming along? 

We all know that they were difficult.  For those that have kept up with those commitments, we applaud you for your efforts and successes.

Some of us remember the commitments and realize that we let them go a few weeks ago. 

Some of us are still hanging on to them; however, it has become a battle to keep them going and only do it on a sporadic basis. 

Keeping those commitments is a battle.  If it wasn't a battle, we might be either guilty of setting the "bar" too low or we may be wondering why we didn't do them earlier.

Well, we are near the end of the second month of this New Year.  The feeling of spring is starting to set in with the arrival of March.  Oh, we know that we will still face some winter moments in the next month or two; however, inwardly we know that spring is almost here. The season of natural introspection is about to blossom into the season of new energy. It is during this time of the year that we find a new breath. We get new energy.

Unfortunately, I believe that we miss the spiritual seasonality of life. We get so tired of the cold... and the snow... and the bitter wind. We miss this seasonal opportunity to drawn within so that we can assess who we are becoming.  We get distracted from asking ourselves, “Are we being true to who we are designed to be as a person?” 

No, I don't mean that we ask the question that we seem to ask ourselves often... "Am I working at the right place?"  No, it is deeper than that. 

Do we ask ourselves?

If I have the heart of an artist, am I developing and utilizing those skills that speak from my heart? 

If I have the capability of being a leader, am I giving myself the opportunity leading a class or a project or a movement?

If I am a thinker, am I developing this gift by reading great books or developing ideas that could change the world?

If I am a listener, am I giving the gift of my presence to someone who needs to be heard?

It is in this season of winter that all external signs of nature's life seems to disappear.  The leaves on the trees have fallen.  The flowers are still yet a seed in the soil of the earth. The warm air may briefly appear like it did yesterday but can quickly escape because it lacks something that we create within ourselves... limitations. 

Yes, we create within ourselves the shackles called “limitations”.  Life has been described as a "brief moment of time" or "we are like a vapor". Yet, time has no limitations.  Vapor has no limitations. The wind has no limitations. Who can harness either of those things? So, why do we want to harness our own capabilities with self-imposed limitations?

We create limitations within ourselves.  Erroneously, we impose them on others by saying or doubting their capabilities. 

If we are a business person, we look to see what a new applicant can do to increase our bottom line; instead of thinking outside the box and wondering if the job is the right one for this person. Basically, we place the job above the person.  We wonder if the person is the right one for the job instead of wondering if the job is the right one for the person.

If we are a coach, we have kids who try out for positions. During the course of the try out, we have children trying out for positions that do not fit their capability.  So, we should help them to see the strengths of who they are so that they can develop their value by being the right "player on the team".  

As a parent, we think of how successful we want our children to be without really wondering what defines success for each of them; because it is going to be different with each one.

We are still in a season of dormancy.  We are still hiding our "seasonal leaves".  If the original commitment of the year is still in play then keep on moving towards its completion. If the original commitment of the year has been pushed off to the side, don’t think negatively about not keeping it.  Consider the fact that maybe we just made the wrong commitment and make the right one today.

We are confined by our limitations.  We are defined by being who we truly are meant to be.


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