July 11, 2021


Blue Ridge Tree 05/302010 02 Oil Paint Rendered — Blue Ridge Parkway, Blowing Rock, North Carolina
Our choices got us where we are.
Our choices will get us where we are going.
Who knows where they are going?
Who knew we were going where we are?
What are choices good for, really?

The primary choice is Yes or No.
How do we know?
Upon what does our choice 
between Yes and No depend?

If we choose some form of addiction
to be free of the pressure
of being right about 
choosing between un-choose-able choices,
we chose poorly.

Addiction clouds our choosing-ability.
Then, we choose to remain addicted.
Until we are forced to choose not to.

We have to bear the pain.
The pain is the agony of being alive,
not knowing what we are doing,
and/or being unable to do 
what needs to be done
because circumstances will not allow it.

And we can avoid un-choose-able choices
only so long.
Eventually, we land in the hot spot,
with no way of knowing what to do.
Are we better off here or there?
Doing this or that?
Who knows?
Only time will tell.
In the meantime, we bear the pain.

Do not resort to addiction.
Addiction can feel like 
it is all balance and harmony,
spirit, energy, vitality,
until it doesn't.

We can fool ourselves about
better and worse.
What seems to be better
can be way worse.
What seems to be worse
can be way better.
Who knows?
How can we tell,
when only time will tell?

Listen to your heart.
Listen to your body
(What do you know "in your bones"?
What does your stomach--
that old gut feeling--know?

Listen to your nighttime dreams.
Listen to your daytime hunches.

Be aware of everything.

Spend time with the silence,
looking, listening,
seeing, hearing,
all that is going on there.

Take your time.

Wait for the mud to settle
and the water to clear.

Being aware of everything.

Looking, listening for a sign.
For multiple signs.
Checking everything out
with your heart,
your body,
your nighttime dreams
your daytime hunches.

Trusting your luck.


I know where to place the tripod,
where to stand to take a photograph.
But then,
I move the tripod around
and take the photo from different locations.
And choose the best picture--
the one I think is best at the time--
when I look at them on my computer,
and may go back to the scene
and take some more.

I really don't know anything
about where to place the tripod,
or where to stand to take a photograph.
Or which photo is going to be pleasing
in ten years.
Or twenty.

Only time will tell.

So don't have to be right.

Make a choice and see what choices
that choice will require.
And make them when it becomes clear
that they need to be made.

Here we go again.

It takes a lot of looking
to be able to see.



Beidler Forest 20 06/23/2019 Oil Paint Rendered — Audubon Center and Sanctuary, Four Hole Swamp, Harleyville, South Carolina
If you feel as though your life
isn't working out to suit you,
you can work on your life,
or you can work on your attitude.

Working on either or both might improve your life.
But nothing is going to change
until something does.
What are you going to do to change things?
What would be a worthy first step?

Take it.
Then take the next one.

You're off!

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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