I saw this posted the other day, and it caused me to pause…
“Cancel telling kids college is the only way to be successful.”
I’d have to somewhat agree a bit, but might I throw a bit of a curveball and some kindling to that line of thought?
Success is an attitude of the heart and mind as well as the actions of the body and emotions.
It’s a lifestyle that begins when you wake up everyday by the thoughts and choices you choose, which in turn, can create successes or failures.
It can last for a lifetime if you think well, choose well and have determined follow through…
So, I guess I’d personally say, “Don’t cancel the thought of “college only”, and don’t cancel the thought of “trade only.””
My suggestion would rather be, the better approach is to decide to be successful by who you are more than what you choose to do, and THEN, what you choose to do, do it well and with purpose and watch successes come more easily!
Sometimes, it’s almost mind-boggling to think how, throughout the year before, we long for Christmas to get here. We dream of it, talk about it, plan for it and prepare so many things to perfectly progress for the precise moment it will arrive, and then, the day itself seems to pass almost as quickly as it arrives.
Yet, for those of us who claim to be Christians, it does make me wonder, do we do the same for the coming of our eternal King?
For He IS coming, and we will be with Him for so much longer than Christmas Day will ever have been.
Are we getting ready?
And are we urging others to be ready?
Just as we’ve asked, “Do you have your tree up?” Maybe we should also ask, “ Do you have your heart ready?”
Maybe just as we’ve asked, “Do you have all your presents bought?” We should also ask, “Did you know, your soul has already been purchased with a price?”
Just as we inquire, “Are your family members coming?” Maybe we follow that with, “Are they headed toward heaven as well?”
Because if we are ready for all the Christmases we could ever live through, but we miss the one event that only happens once in a lifetime, we will regret it forever.
If we have all the presents in the world bought and perfectly wrapped, yet we miss the very present that has been provided to us for free, then in comparison, all the rest is just trash.
And if we enjoy company with our family and friends during the season, but we fail to show them the way to Christ, all those seasons will fade for the eternity in which we will miss them.
Let us not lose a moment.
Let us not miss an opportunity.
Let us never ignore the Hope.
Our time is too short, and their lives are too precious to lose…and so are ours.
Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.
Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.
I read this, and it settled in like a long awaited truth to my soul.
This idea of letting go of pain, of allowing it to be placed somewhere outside our body, outside our mind, can be so healing.
When we hold pain and sorrow, it only brings more agony and anxiety.
When we constrain the heartache we’ve lived, it only brings more shattered dreams.
It only brings more grief and breathlessness.
Don’t restrain the tears.
Don’t stop the weeping.
Don’t halt the search for peace and joy.
But do allow that gut wrenching, earth shattering, all consuming knife within your soul to be let go.
If pen and paper bring an ease, then let the words fly as if being chased by a cobra.
If paint and canvas bring a breath of fresh air, then create the masterpiece of a lifetime.
If a song can be sung or a lyric be written, then allow the harmony to find it’s way as a raindrop finds the groove in a muddy hillside.
But clear that affliction from your thoughts.
Issue that grievance a pardon or prison sentence to far away lands.
Surrender that anguish from your heart and begin to breathe again.
Freedom comes with the release.
Now, go live.
And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ. Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so also you will partakeof the consolation.
Memories of you swirl around my head as I swat them away like flies.
I fight feelings of anger and grief as I pick up the shattered pieces of my heart.
I struggle to paint the smile I’ve learned to wear so well as if it’s an extra skin.
I look into the mirror and despise what I see because the reflections of the past come shining through.
Thoughts of you roll through my brain as if they have stolen permission to remain.
I battle the turmoil within, trying to make sense of the void and chasm of pain.
I wrestle with my flesh to hide the sorrow so I might glance with kindness on another.
I gaze at the pictures you left behind and loathe the resemblances that cannot be shred.
Recollections ramble through my mind as that one calls your name as I look away.
I resist the hatred that threatens to take hold, as I reach out openhanded for His love.
I assail the bitterness I can taste as if it were delights for my fancy and raise my hands in praise.
I search and await His hope that is beyond this present state of being and take confidence knowing it won’t be long till His rescue is complete.
Penned – MG – 12/1/21
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.