Tracks In The Dust

A Father's Advice About Learning the Mission of Life

Archive for the tag “Acceptance”

Anticipation

Anticipation. We are all subject to that feeling of anticipation of what comes next in our lives, New family additions, weddings, vacations, promotions at work, a new course in our lives that will change so much of what we already knew.

It can be something special, or something you know is coming and only time will allow it to arrive. I remember in my youth those anxious moments of “going out” with only a night full of adventure ahead. where nothing would seem to get in your way. It would be great to kind of “box that up” and keep it to know that feeling again. I often recollect the phase about how ” youth is wasted on the young”. Not always true, but there were those times when the anticipation was golden.

Still that anxious heart lives in me and I embrace what I can to anticipate things in life even as they are ever-so-simple. It’s not a complicated thing, but it can be elusive when hopelessness and despair are so easily able to make their way into your life.

Even as I fight the fight of my life to beat cancer, I can reach back in my heart and find anticipation in what God will bring me and my family. My children are growing up and experiencing marriage, job promotions, starting new life directions, and getting the dark clouds pushed aware by the reality that they control their own future.

Anticipation of a new day. Anticipation of Eternity. Anticipation is what brings life one of its greatest joys.

I had to include this song. It was on my mind. Carly Simon.

What is Left Behind

We are all aware of the saying ” you can’t take it with you”. Over a lifetime [short or long as it may be], we can accumulate a lot of possessions. We can collect a lot of things that help to define who we are personally, along with the junk that really is meaningless in the scheme of things.

Loves Condition

But  these days more than ever, I realize that it’s not about what I own, and certainly what will happen to it when I’m no longer on this earth. It will fall into the path of history, perhaps be landfill, or someone else’s accumulated prize.

Can I worry about the things I have left behind? Perhaps because I don’t want it to burden my loved ones or anyone else. But spending days worrying about it would be worthless worry. So there you have it. Unless you are a hermit, or you purge yourself of everything you own. You’re going to leave things behind for someone else to deal with.

Rather than “things”, I think more about the people that will I will leave behind. They will continue to live their lives to the fullest, God willing. Our kids will continue to grow as adults, to manage through the very same human complications that made up my daily life.. My wife has been my genuine companion and the love of my life for over 35 years, and I have promised to love her always and forever. It is likely that there will come a day that I will not be there for her, yet our lives are from our mutual love and friendship.

Both my wife and I realize we are rich because of the friendships we have in our lives, those we have come to know recently, as well as those we have been fortunate to call friends over the decades, There are so many. And they are there today sending kind words and thoughts, and sharing in prayer.

There is hope for the future. And what left behind is a future of the legacy of the people in your life. It makes life meaningful. It is the paths crossed, the words said, the friendships and relationships that have changed the course of our lives. That is what means the most. The invested time with friends and family will be everyone’s legacy. It will be God’s legacy.

For that I’m grateful and not sad. I am optimistic about the future for me and for everyone else.It is that legacy is what gets all of us through life with meaning, isn’t it? The legacy and the richness of family, friendships and God’s promise of eternity. That will make what ever happens be okay.

 

Who is In Control?

It’s crazy to think that you really have control over that much. We are all trying to “stay” in control though aren’t we? In control of our family, or finances, our jobs, our own personal sanity sometimes.

Life is Very Short

So we work very hard at it. To be in control. We take it very seriously, It can mean recognition, financial gain, personal satisfaction. We would pay a lot to be in-control of some things in our lives. In other ways we “wish” we were in control…”if only we ran the government, we would show everyone how it is done!” Or “if that was my child he would know what it was to behave”.

Relish the thought that someone would claim we are “out of control”. That would be a claim that would imply we had no discipline, we were ignorant of how things are done. It would put us on some list that says we don’t care, or lack caution or consideration.

But in reality to me I see that there is little we are actually in control of in the bigger picture. We are going to pass from this earth when it is our time, and we can manage to extend it but in the end we are not in control of the outcome. We are going to have things that happen that regardless of what we do in our daily lives are going to happen anyway. We can spend a ton of energy trying to be in control of things and miss the simple fact that life will go on regardless just as God planned it.

So I am giving up that control to Him. To all things there are a purpose under heaven. I know that not everyone reading this may believe, but the reality of it all is the world turns regardless of your beliefs. Take a moment to understand that your purpose here is to live for the day, and that energy and stress for control can consume you. To those who have faith, let God worry about tomorrow.

Asking Questions

I have said it before, in the world of “instant messages” it seems like we are being programmed to provide an “instant response”. That leads to us not thinking before we respond, and not often clearly understanding the meaning being conveyed. My advice to my kids: “Ask questions”.

Where is the Love Question-mark

Maybe it is just a symptom of the speed in which everything happens today, but I don’t see many people asking questions about things. Often it doesn’t even seem that they are listening, perhaps because they are working-up a response.

Recently I was speaking with my son about a great opportunity ahead of him in his life, it seems like the direction he wants to go and the “doors” are opening for him to go on the journey. For him, getting answers to the “why” were still unknown. We can always ask the hard questions, but sometimes they get missed.”Why” is one of the hardest ones to ask in my opinion.

Whether it is a life-changing event or just a simple decision, it takes little investment to just understand things more clearly. It is our right to ask questions, to better understand someone when they talk, to be sure to know where someone is “coming from” before we form an opinion, or make a call on something.

You might even learn something. Listening to what is being said and responding in a question means “dialog” – can open many more options, can make for better understanding that can lead to friendships, or more confidence or just simply a better picture of the world around us.

  • Listen. Don’t take everything at face value.
  • Ask questions. Understand the meaning of things
  • Don’t be in a hurry. It could be an investment in your life worth making.

I am sure there are plenty of times when things can move along without complicating it with questions. But there are as many times (or more I think) when a few minutes may change everything.

 

Detachment or Indifference?

No doubt there are many reasons to be concerned about the world’s issues. Throughout history there has been focused attention on the separation of cultures, religious beliefs, power and money. There are many reasons I can say I care, but overall I can say that I have become less interested.

Charting The Course

A travesty you say? How can you be so unfeeling? How can you not  personally care about the hate,greed and malice of the world around us? People insist that you HAVE to care about the political landscape – you must have an opinion and you better well be landing on the one that whomever you are talking to is passionate about. There is this sense of urgency to be “correct”.

Sorry to disappoint, but I am likely to say that the battle of with cancer has led me to be more detached more than indifferent. .
Many things don’t  take the same priority as  they it once did.
Oliver Sacks from the New York Times recently said in an article on his diagnosis of terminal cancer at aged 81:”Seeing life from a great altitude. This detachment to things that belong to the future. The future will be left in great hands in some cases.”

Honestly I have gotten much closer to God (perhaps the greater altitude) and the meaning of my future, and that future to me means eternity. But the future here on Earth is going to go on without me. And I have to accept that day will come, as it will for each and every one of us.

So am I indifferent? No. I would like to see more people have peace in their lives, to save their temper for the fight against the deterioration of the human condition. Perhaps that would be worth some passion…

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