Hello reader, this is the first of a two-part blog post. Look for Part II next week.
I used to have two stress meters or “Bob’s EKG’s,” if you will. One reflected my outward persona; the Bob everyone around me saw. The other was my own internal barometer that measured how I was feeling on the inside.
The outward EKG was pretty cool and calm and in control. See Illustration A.
Illustration A: The Bob those around me saw.
The other felt like Illustration B. Wow, what a difference, huh?
Illustration B: What I felt like inside!
I decided that if I wanted to live a long (and healthy!) life, I’d better bring Illustration B closer in line with Illustration A. I knew it wouldn’t be easy. And I knew I needed some guidance as growth cannot occur without the help of others.
The River of Life Isn’t life interesting? It’s a constant journey of learning and discovery, the current ever changing. It flows much like a river, constantly reinventing itself. The river, with its tumbling stones and debris, is constantly being reshaped in ways and at a pace we can’t always see but we know it’s happening.
|The “River of Life” keeps changing our understanding and perspective on life and those around us.|
Our lives also are constantly changing, being shaped by objects or experiences that can change us for the better or perhaps “pollute” us. However, unlike the river we have a choice as to how we let the stones and debris of life change us. What have been your choices? Is what you project to others what you feel inside?
A while back, I was asked to read and study Rick Warren’s, The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?
I must admit I was nervous as I was unsure how I would express my ignorance, so to protect my misguided shame, I studied it in advance, a mistake, without good communication, I insulted the person who suggested and as a result, I studied without the benefit of collaborative help with and from someone . Recently, I re-read it, mostly because I have such a different perspective on what it has to say and the deep meaning behind the words and message.
This same revelation happened with C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters. I attended the play a few years ago, but it wasn’t until recently, when I read the book, that what Lewis was writing about actually sunk in and gave me such an interesting perspective on life as well as my faith. In brief, the story is a satire on human nature and is built on letters written by an old retired demon to a newbie demon, a protégé, on how to mess with a new Christian (referred to as a “patient”) and lead him astray. Lewis addresses universal questions about Christian faith through the perspective of the devil who is trying to take over and destroy the soul of his patient.
So, what does all of this have to do with saving your life you ask? Ah, patience my dear readers as I am confident it will become clear in my own rambling, (and, at times) convoluted manner.
Back to The Purpose Driven Life: Rick Warren has much to say. However, this Rambling is not a book report. It is instead a few thoughts that I hope may provoke your own personal introspection and thoughts as to how Warren’s message may apply to your life. Here are a few key phrases from the book that, in part, tie in with the theme of this Rambling:
- . . . the search for the purpose of life . . . typically begins at the wrong starting point, ourselves, when in reality it begins with who created us!
- . . . being successful and fulfilled in your life’s purpose are not the same thing.
- Self-sacrifice is the way to finding yourself, your true self!
So, a question for you: What (little devil) is distracting you from finding your purpose?
Think about this interesting analogy Warren has on finding purpose:
If you were given an invention that you had never seen, did not know its origin, did not know the inventor, and were asked to describe its purpose, what are the chances you would know for sure what its purpose was? The chances you’d nail it would be very remote, if at all.
The same is true for us: What is our purpose? Asking for help and guidance from our inventor/creator is the answer. Otherwise, in my opinion, there are only two options and just one that has certainty:
- work on your best guess or preferably…
And with that, please watch for Part II, next week!