This morning at church, my favorite priest spoke of discomfort and some of the current events that we see in the news and cities around us. I consider the discomfort that so many people feel and marvel at the courage of the protestors, although I’m not sure what constructive goal the protests will accomplish. Like anything else, time will indeed tell.
However, I find myself reflecting on the courage I witness in so many people as they work to make their lives better. In my travels today, I watched the people who serve as cashiers at the local Wal-Mart, many of whom have expensive college degrees. I remember working at a very famous fast-food establishment after the completion of my undergraduate degree, and the vague discomfort of engaging in minimum-wage labor despite the education I possessed. The job was one of my only options in the area, and better jobs took time to find– time that I didn’t have as I watched the bills accumulate. That
vague sense of discomfort has recurred at several times in my life in varying degrees. I sometimes wonder what it is in me that compels me to seek continually higher pinnacles of achievement. Sometimes, I think it’s a burden. Why can’t I be like other people who are content with their lots in life? So it’s a double-edged sword:
- On one hand, I want to achieve more, fulfill my potential, and become the person I know is inside me.
- On the other hand, I want to be “normal,” have friends with whom I can gossip over coffee, and just BE.
I think that conquering discomfort requires courage and balance. We need the courage to act and grow. More than that, we need the courage to dream beyond anything we have ever known in the knowledge that anything we can dream can become a reality if we allow it. The balance comes in knowing what is “enough.” Do you really need more money– or is it a want? Do you need to have a big house, or is that a want? Where is that darn line between need and want, anyway?
As I write this, I’m listening to Sting’s“Brand New Day,” and realize that each dawn brings renewed opportunities for courage and balance. If today you don’t know how to achieve what you want, stick it on a posty note in your brain and let the Divine spirit work on it for a while. If you don’t know how to find that balance point of need vs. want, again put it on a posty note and let the Creator help you decide. The Creator will give you the ideas and the courage to dream, to do, and to rest contented. The trick is to listen and trust.