Saturday, June 4, 2011
How far is it?
How far have you come?
The thing I like about the word "distance" is it can mean going forward or moving back. Either way, its and action word. It implies space and time.
I don't think very much in terms of the distant future. I never know what is coming next. I don't mean that in a small sense...but a rather large one.
Will orders drop and send us off across the states or the world again?
Is it time to call it quits and leave the military behind?
If so, where do we go? Where do we look for jobs? Everywhere? Anywhere? Somewhere specific? (This is a hard question as we don't really have a place we MUST go back to.)
Will we like the next place....or the next 5 places? Will the kids adapt well or will it be hard on them?
See - I could spend hours on these kind of questions and focus way too much of my mind and energy on them. And it would all be for naught. Because what comes -- well comes. And we always roll with it just fine. There are always snags and complications -- which we work through and move on.
So worrying about how far we will go...... its not really my thing. Plus the Bible backs me up on that one. It's a time waster. I've got life to live.
Since I don't have roots, most of my contemplation on distance is about how far I've come. That could be physically or just growth as a person. Either way you can look back and the the progress or lack thereof. And I know I'm not done....there is so much distance still to travel.
But I've come so far....
...as a parent. I believe we are far better parents now than we have ever been in the past. You learn with each kid. Your priorities shift as you age and your focus is different. Hopefully, all these years you are actively learning and adjusting your parenting skills.
...as a Christian. Its hard to start late in life and try to unlearn all you've ever been. Not that is a complete lobotomy....but it is a completely new way of thinking to add to or temper your personality. I'd say I've had quite a bit of tempering. Sarcasm in no longer the first thing you notice about me. I will speak to strangers. Hah -- I will speak to non-strangers! And I LOVE helping others.
...as a neighbor. For so long when we were young life was all about our family and friends. Now I take this a step farther and try to be a good neighbor. Even if I don't care for or know someone, I can step forward to lend a helping hand without even thinking about it. It's what you do for your neighbors. And we have seen alot of this on the tv in the places that have been hit by tornadoes and deadly storms. Love your neighbors even if you don't have a relationship with them. Hey -- where have we heard that before???
...as a person. I can see I am much calmer, patient and just more settled in the skin I'm in. And this has been a very rocky road. Although I tend to get over things fairly quickly, once you cross my "don't cross" line in the sand, you are done. That can be really hard on people. (No, sorry, wasn't hard on me at all - I won't lie.) But as I travel the distance that is my life.....I find myself letting people back in that I normally wouldn't have.
(At least I hope that's growth...not some kind of idiotic old age disease!!)
You know, its really soul satisfying to look back and see the good distances we have traveled. And the not so good ones are learning tools or stepping stones. They have their place and play their parts. I'll never be proud of them -- but I won't waste time fretting over them or punishing myself over the mistakes. We all make them. It's what you do from there that counts. And sometimes, late is better than never.
So how about you?
Are your distances positive journeys......or a road of regret? Is your journey forward a cause for fear and anxiety or do you live life today and take what comes as a challenge or a surprise just around the bend?