Archive for the ‘choosing’ Category

What Am I Doing Here?

March 17, 2023

Have you ever found yourself somewhere only to ask yourself, “What am I doing here? How did I get here?”

We can think geographically or socially or emotionally.

I immediately had flashbacks of being somewhere between 17 and 19 riding in a car on back country roads with a crazy guy going 100 miles-per-hour (160 kmh). What am I doing here?

Perhaps you were at a dive bar or other place where only trouble happens.

It could be a relationship. Or a job. Or a church. Or lack of any of those.

Now is the part of a normal religious writing especially for the Web where we offer 10 things you can do to improve your life or 7 sure steps to leave the rut. Or, if I were a fundamentalist, I’d just say “Find Jesus and all will be well.”

To quote George Costanza from Seinfeld, “I got nothin’.”

I wish I had a formula about how awareness grew within me. I became aware of where I was. Then I became aware of something better. And aware of someone or something that was trying to help.

Sometimes awareness follows a significant event. Sometimes awareness is like a small seed that grows within until the mature plant blooms within. “Ah ha,” we say to ourselves (or to a significant other person). “How could I have been so blind?”

I once was lost, but now I’m found; was blind but now I see.

What did I realize? I made choice that led me there. I could make other choices to lead me out. Maybe I just needed to recognize the pointers to help me with those choices.

You Can’t Do It On Your Own

February 21, 2023

Jesus began his ministry with this message–change the direction of your life (repent). Why? Because the kingdom of heaven is here (actually here, there, everywhere).

We just have one response–part of it is awareness that we are not on the right path, the one pleasing to God. The other part is to choose to follow the right path.

Later, Jesus added a bit to this. Or he clarified. He said our response it to love God completely and to love our neighbor. When asked about who the neighbor was, he told a story where the neighbor was the most despised person his audience would think of.

Think of the person you would most despise–someone of a different race, someone of a different gender identity, someone from another country speaking a different language. That person you must love.

Later, again, Jesus told a story about a camel going through an eye of the needle. I’m not going to delve into different explanations of what that physical image was. What he was trying to explain is that it is almost impossible to be part of the kingdom of heaven through your own effort.

Loving doesn’t come easy.

But, God’s grace helps us. By living each moment with-God, we will be helped into that state of being in the kingdom where we can love those that we think are beyond love. We change our attitude (which means direction) and start walking along God’s path alongside God.

Part of that repentance thing is to realize we can make a choice but we can’t earn entry through our own efforts. But when we let God be God then we get that extra boost into the kingdom.

Then we truly find that capacity to love even our enemies and those we despise.

We Forgot To Choose

October 19, 2022

Viktor Frankl writing in Man’s Search for Meaning solidified the idea of our power to choose in my mind. The idea became one of my core beliefs. Ancient people knew that truth, the truth of choosing your attitude, your response, your life.

Seth Godin writes, “We are leaving the age of information and entering the age of choice. Not just choosing what we’ll consume, but who we will become. Who will we connect with, lead, trust, honor, dignify, isolate or believe? And how will we choose to walk through the world and what will we leave behind…”

Long-time technology pundit Steve Gillmor early on predicted companies on the Internet were all about capturing our attention. Now we read about the many psychological tricks companies such as Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and others use to capture and retain our attention. 

To whom do you choose to give your attention? And all the other choices Seth suggests?