November 14-B, 2022

Bass Lake 10 10/06/2011 Oil Paint Rendered — Blue Ridge Parkway, Blowing Rock, North Carolina
The perennial task of life
is to reconcile ourselves 
to our circumstances
in a "This is the way things are,
and this is what I can do about it,
and that's that" kind of way--
without expectations,
emotional reactivity,
followed by:
"Now what can I do about
being unable to do any more about it?"

The "What can I do now?"
is the crucial part of the equation.

Diversion, distraction, dejection, dismay, denial
are the usual options,
opined in a "Poor me, poor me," kind of way.

We owe ourselves more than that.
What we do with disappointment
is crucial to everything that follows.

We carry it into the emptiness,
and silence,
and sit with it
until something stirs to life,
to lead us on a train of associations
into depths and realizations
that would have never occurred to us
without taking the time 
to explore our response
to "No! Not now, not ever!"

"No!" is better than "Yes, of course!"
in that it expands/enlarges us 
in ways "Yes," never could.

And, if we aren't growing, 
we're dying.

So, take every "No!" 
as a concealed "Yes!" 
that needs to be explored,
examined, imagined, birthed,
and brought forth into being.

"If not this, then what?"
Find out!
Do not die without knowing
where every road leads,
which is, of course, 
to another road.


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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