Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Who is Controlling You?

The great African American novelist Charles W. Chestnutt once offered this interesting opinion that is truly food for thought as this new year and new decade dawns, he wrote: 
"We are all puppets in the hands of fate and seldom see the strings that move us."
I hate to think of myself as a "puppet" especially in light of all the self help resources that are available to nurture my mind and challenge me to lead a life that matters.  But there are some responsibilities that drive a great deal of what I do in my life.

How about you?  Do you feel fully in control of all the circumstances in your life right now?  I am frequently with folks who have taken ill or had some other traumatic event take place in their life.  Some of them have talked about how surprised they were to have to face their illness or trauma.  Yet, when pressed they could tell of warning signs or ways they were living that might have led to the very illness or trauma they were facing.

I was reminded of the kind of dedication to the unknown our soldiers face at a recent event with one of my favorite World War II veterans.  He could joke about the paths his life had taken before, during, and after the war as he reflected about it.  But it also seemed to me that he mastered the art of living fully in the moment, somehow.

If we can live fully in the moment in this new year maybe we can shake some of those unknown forces trying to control us and turn us into puppets.  Maybe we'll truly be able to make up our own minds about living green, losing the pounds and loving our friends, lovers, and family members in the ways that will really matter.

A wise sage wrote of "a time for every season under the sun" in the 3rd chapter of the book of Ecclesiastes in the Hebrew Scriptures.  Day by day I'm finding that book of the Bible a bigger and bigger gift!

Consider who and what is controlling you as this new year begins.  Live each moment out loud, fully, expressively, and joyfully!  Make this new year and this new decade brighter and better as you move along in it!   Keep striving for higher ground!