Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Reflection On This Last Day

Go Forward.

It has been my mantra for the past four years.

The question remains, however.

Have I?

Am I a better person today than I was when I first made this my motto? Have I regressed? Am I treading water?

I realize I can be too introspective and not live life. I am also a firm believer the unexamined life is not worth living. And the phrase "let go and let God" are still merely words to me, despite the personal events of the past few years demanding just that.

People say I have a strong faith. Are they seeing someone who exercises religiosity or whose belief is firmly grounded? More often than not I am more like the rich young man or the Prodigal Son. I wonder sometimes if the words of the tax collector (the basis of the "Jesus Prayer") are even sounding hollow and shallow.

Perhaps, then, I am not moving at all. Paralyzed by fear, despair, and despondency. Seems like I want to feel like I have been victimized. But then, I am reminded of the words of Cassius in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar: "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves."

Yes, I am extremely hard on myself. Charles M. Schulz, the creator of the comic strip "Peanuts" once said through his wisest character, Linus Van Pelt, "The greatest burden is great potential." Realizing my potential has always been my heaviest cross. Deep down, I know I am not living up to what God created me to be. Have this unfulfilled actuality finally crushed my spirit? Do I really want to quit on God as well as me?

No. Not by a long shot. And, as I remember a letter from a distant relative written almost three decades ago, quitting is not part of my DNA. Nor should it be a part of anyone's:

Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.

Pope John XXIII
Something inside is still alive. Maybe on life-support, but still there. (I think it's called grace.) This is just a time where everything is still being questioned. I just need to learn Jesus Christ is the answer. And believe.

2009 comes. Only God knows what will happen. Only He will bless me as He sees fit. I just need a new pair of eyes.

See you when the calendar page turns.

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