Tracks In The Dust

A Father's Advice About Learning the Mission of Life

Archive for the tag “Forgiveness”

Our 35 Years of Sharing

There is no way to put it into perspective completely. Today my wife and I celebrate 35 years of being married.

It has been a marriage filled with joy and sorrow, adventure and patience, love and anger, some victories and some regrets. The memories are precious, even as some of them are filled with cloudy remembrances, they are part of our love growing together.

Love Birds

We were married as our parents opined “very young”  ( my wife was 19 and I was 23). We didn’t go in blindly to the marriage, but I think we were naive about what the journey ahead would be. But headfirst we jumped into life with the promise of a bright future.

Thirty-five years later we have relocated multiple times across the US ( mainly because of job related reasons), we have 4 great children that have supplied ( and continue to supply) a house full of love and family dramas. But over all we have been blessed. Not by wealth, not by possessions, not by health or constant good fortune, but by each other. It has not been perfect.

I want to quote a wise  spiritual leader, pastor, author I have had the honor to know, Steve Lucas, who also recently posted some sentiments about his marriage on his site (Yesterday Lucas):   These really captured my heart as things that I feel are so true.  “Marriage is not about perfection. It’s about two people, stumbling through life together, growing in their relationship with each other and with God. Forgiveness, patience, a bad memory, and extra love are all ingredients that are required to make it in marriage.”

And I agree with that 100%.   As he explains also that there are a handful of days that could be good to have called a “do over”. I can think of several in recent memory ( some further back are a bit cloudy, but the remnants are still there ). But  as he says, do-over’s would likely be at the  expense of the wisdom gained through mistakes. Again I couldn’t agree more.  “ Thankfully, in every failure there has been forgiveness; in every trial, we shared them together.”

“I don’t deserve my wife. But then again, neither do I deserve the Grace of God. But I’ll happily accept both.”

I am blessed with the happiness of what is truly the good fortune in my life, to know true love.

In A New York Minute

In a split second, in the matter of a moment, a second, a minute or a day things can change.

The Time Is Now

It amazes me that in life’s adventure, during our mission here on Earth we are able to experience things in real time and see so many changes around us.  I know some people resist change, and others welcome it. I can say that I expect it.

Sometimes the changes are long-coming, but more often it can be one shift in the status-quo for your life to take another direction.  Some times it can be predicted, but we choose to ignore it. Other times it is just a total shift in things.

My wife and I are going to get a chance to meet my grandson, someone we have never met during his seven years on this Earth. Due to a long story of events our oldest son has been out of our lives for over eleven years. Now, in a New York minute – we are planning their visit to our home.

There is a story of the prodigal son in the Bible that rings true, but there are so many twists in our story. We are good with things really, it is good to have the opportunity to meet him. We don’t have any way to explain to him the time lost, or to have him understand the life we had with his father until he left home at age 18.

So we shall let things run the course they are headed. Change is good overall. It was quite a change back on the day our son left home. It will be another when we meet up with him and his son these many years later.

Comes to mind the Don Henley song. Here is a great cover of it. Life is short. Believe.

Changing Lives One Day At A Time

decisionTime seems to stand still once in a while. There is nothing special happening, nothing monumental. Yet all around you are people who are experiencing quite the opposite. They may be having a life event, a special moment perhaps. They may have run into the depths of failure, or the heights of success.

But there you are. Living in one of  those nondescript days where at the end of it, you have to ask yourself how it got so late at night and it is “time for bed”.  It seems like a throw-away day. Just moving through the day like the sun overhead. Moving from east to west and finally being done warming the day.

Sometimes it makes me feel sad. It’s a day you can never get back, no chance to have a “re-do”. Could there have been opportunities to make a difference in someone else’s  life, to strike a conversation, help someone you may not even have known by offering an act of kindness?  Could you have spent a moment to call a friend, make someone laugh or just tell someone you haven’t seen in a while that you were thinking of them?

All of those things seem so simple and somewhat insignificant I guess. But they are not, are they?  They are reasons for the chance to live the day. To provide forgiveness, to show kindness, to create a new timeline of events for someone else perhaps, a possible very small thing for you- that sends someone off in an entirely new direction in their lives.

Then you can still say it “seemed like an uneventful day”. But not… it seems for everyone.  I will work to make that day happen. How about you?

Expecting Less

Infinity

There are so many times when “expecting less” in your life’s daily process would be best. Yet in these days and times it seems like that statement makes some people cringe.

I see so many people who are constantly focused on what they can accumulate in their lives. Whether it is possessions  or friends or money or love or attention, they are constantly measuring their lives to see where they are. A great example of that comes to mind when looking at the social networking sites (even this one) that millions of  people are members: get “more” followers, get “more likes” – add more friends to the list.

For others I see them measuring their lives in how much they have, or how good something compares to what others may have. The better car, the better home, the better job. That is such a fragile thing, especially these days when economies are floundering, prices are raising and the idea of “better” keeps notching up. It ends up with stress in life that can come back to haunt you. Perhaps then you have to worry about getting the “better” doctor perhaps, because you are going to need it.  🙂

So it feels like there should be caution when making the statement that “expecting less” is something well worth declaring. Many times it sounds weak or like someone is resigning to not have high expectations for oneself.  Perhaps for some… their constant drive for more could be defined in the end by the measure of what I think it ultimately provides: “expect less happiness”. For we all know somewhere in our hearts- that more worldly things won’t define happiness – not in the width or breadth of it.

It could be that “expecting less” feels like “accepting failure” – in some cases there is an element of truth. Yet, it can lead to fear of failure;but that can drive another motivation entirely can’t it? I don’t think that it means you should expect to fail, you but you have to understand where the lines are in your life.

So in the end- “give more” is the counter-balance. Spiritually it is the reason for our daily struggles- as many have decided to reverse things and say “expect more“.  What a simple change that will allow us all to be surprised by the spiritual power that we have been provided…and give more.

So expect less/give more. Not sure if you agree with that or not. Be rewarded with what will be blessings and grace in your life. I believe although it is very hard to do, it provides an abundance of happiness when applied.

When You Are Angry

 

It’s very likely that everyone reacts to things differently when it come to being happy or  angry. There are some so genuine universal things that seem to be so great when it comes to sharing emotions. Those are the things that make us human no matter where you live on this big spinning globe I guess.

But what makes you angry? I mean so angry that you are not focused on anything else but that anger? Does start with hate or frustration or end with it? Is it derived from fear? Is it founded in truth, or built on ignorance?

When you get angry, what do you do with that? How do you manage it? Do you ask yourself later: why did I end up getting angry? which in turn may make you angry again (ha)!

If you can answer these questions then, I would guess that you are more in-tune with your inner-self than others may be. When I look at the recent violence that has happened in the US, I know that I cannot imagine someone being that angry and distant from the human race as to wake up one day and intentionally kill people because of anger. That tragedy is beyond me. Yet there are probably scores of thousands of more angry people out there, who are living with themselves with no spiritual or moral guideposts to examine their emotional state.

Also it would seem that fear has just fueled that anger more. Fear of people who are different in some way, fear of the unknown. The Internet has let loose a firestorm of opportunity for people to share their fears and their ignorance, but not in a productive way, rather in a destructive one.  And it adds more fuel when those ramblings  become so massive that even our politicians, celebrities, and leaders in the world just help to further reinforce what some of these very angry people believe to be true.

So angry people run to the Internet or some other place to find their false sense of need to gain the confidence, in turn it leads them to take out a gun and go to a public place and kill their fellow human beings. They cannot reason with themselves, and they have not allowed themselves to reach to the Words that would provide the answers they need. They are willing to even build their anger on untruth’s.

Finding your inner peace and not letting anger consume you can be found simply in the Spiritual things that God can provide. I say a prayer for these lonely souls who have let anger consume them, and have in directed that anger through their fear to  innocent people who have been in the way of their wrath.

I have asked my family  to pause when they get angry, and ask themselves “what am I angry about?” “How does it control me?” Life here on Earth is short in the scene of things, spending it in anger is such a sad way to spend it.

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger. Ephesians 4:26

 

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