Life’s intangibles build inner strength. Through the good times and challenging times, I should grow my faith, hope, courage, wisdom, love and enthusiasm for life on a daily basis.
Start with Questions to Ponder
Questions to Ponder
As I reflect on my 65 years of life, I am reminded of a line from a Jimmy Buffett song, “He went to Paris looking for answers to questions that bothered him so.”
Now, I have never been to Paris, but as long as I can remember I have asked myself questions to shape my thoughts on life. If you follow our “Seek To Be Wise” social media feeds, you know our approach to teaching is more about giving you questions to ponder than telling you how to live life. We recently posted these two questions:
1) Has your life always had challenges?
2) Is it the challenges or how you react to the challenges that make you unique?
When I was younger I thought it was possible to reach a point in life where there were no challenges. A place where you could sail through life on autopilot. Where all life’s experiences were easy and fun. I didn’t find that place in any phase of life: Not in school, not in my work life and not in retirement. The reality is, there is no destination in this life without challenges.
Jim Rohn in his book “ The Four Seasons Of Life” states that someone once said – “Don’t pray for things to be easier, rather, pray for more obstacles and more challenges, for it is out of these that man’s character and will to succeed are formed.”
I am not recommending, nor have I ever prayed for more challenges (and probably never will). But, this statement gives us a different perspective to think about. Experience teaches me that life’s challenges, however uncomfortable, can provide our greatest opportunities to grow, if we choose wisely how we respond. How should you respond?
For most of us, our challenges are not unique. Countless numbers of people have faced or are facing the same concerns. It is my belief that what is unique is our responses. One thing that has always been helpful for me is to put things in perspective. I looked around and found examples of folks who were dealing with much greater issues than myself and are responding with faith, hope, courage, wisdom, love and enthusiasm for life. This gives me hope. If someone has met bigger challenges, surely I can deal with mine. If I learn from their example, I should come through my obstacles and challenges as a stronger, better person.
Another lesson: Life’s intangibles build inner strength. Through the good times and challenging times, I should grow my faith, hope, courage, wisdom, love and enthusiasm for life on a daily basis. In the good times, these intangibles prepare us for what’s around the bend. Life will bring challenges. As my inner strength grows, so does my ability to deal with life’s opportunities and life’s challenges.
I feel that for me to find my unique response, it is helpful to seek the wisdom of other people whom I trust– especially those that have successfully dealt with the same challenge I am dealing with.
I also believe in the power of seeking guidance from above through prayer. I am one of those guys who need all the help I can get. To look up and ask for guidance helps light a path that I might not see on my own.
Then I respond. Never with a perfect response, but one based on my life experiences and beliefs. These suggestions have helped me as I seek to live a better life. I plant these seeds not to tell you what to do, but to give you things to think about and consider. It is our unique responses to life’s opportunities and challenges that make us who we are.
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