Climbing Slowly, Part 1

My focus is ahead, reaching, holding tight, working hard. Husband, children, self, all clinging close, sharing in the work. The struggle. The learning. Growing. Becoming.

The most recent round of lessons may be about Chores and Budgets and Long Division, but really, they are just the same basic lessons being repeated through fresh content. The content continually changes as we age, but the lessons at the core don’t ever change. It is always about avoiding Pride and cultivating Humility, denying Self and serving Other, learning to see Christ in everyone, and learning to love everyone like Christ. These lessons don’t change.

At first, the new lessons always seem too tough. But then we start the climb, remember to replace Fear with Faith, and we get busy doing the work of our salvation.

Hard work it is. Back breaking, hope crushing, never ending work. And we are so focused on surviving it all, making it through, finishing the job at hand. We don’t see everything we pass by along the way. It is a blur outside the windows of our work.

Work. Liturgy. Work of the people. This is what we do. This is how we spend our lives. Together. Climbing that Ladder of Divine Ascent. One challenging rung at a time.

 

 

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You Choose

You have two choices.

In choice #1, you are four times as wealthy as you actually are today. So while there is not an endless supply of cash, you are able to do much much more, spend more, and without having to worry about prices as you do now.

In choice #2, you have only 3/4 of your actual current income. However you have really good budgeting, organizational, and DIY skills. You are frugal and able to do much more with the little cash available to you.

Which would you chose? Why?

Which would you wish for your children? Why?

You Choose

You may choose only one of the two lives described here.  In Life A, you have a life of fame and fortune.  You are adored by millions, and your name goes down in history.  in Life B, you live a life of repentance.  Your heart aches for the many ways you have hurt other people and for the ways you have failed to appreciate the incomprehensible love of your Heavenly Father.

Think about it.  If all of life was filtered down to these two simplistic options…. if there was no “other” choice…. no combinations…..which would you choose?

Pretty easy for us “christians”  to know which is the right answer.  Those who have chosen Life A have chosen the goals of the world, the acclaim of men.  Notice it doesn’t specify what you are famous for or how you got the wealth.  And those who have chosen Life B are the ones on their way to theosis, they are the ones who will become Saints. These are the Christians.

But the greater challenge is to apply these two models to every choice we make in life.  All simple and cut and dry as a theory, but in our daily lives, in the goals we set, in the people we admire and try to emulate, which life are we choosing?  What about in the way we dress?  The movies, television programs and the music we choose?  Who really are our heroes?

And the even tougher question is this:  Which life are we setting before our children in the goals we set for them, the accomplishments we encourage and reward, the schedules we create for them and the opportunities we provide for them?  Whom are we setting up to be our children’s heroes?

There are choices that we refer to as “big life decisions”: what career to pursue, which college to attend, which person to marry.  Our lives include very few of these decisions.  However, the millions of decisions we make everyday, what to eat, what to wear, what to buy, what to watch or read or listen to, how to respond to an insult, how to manage time……the list goes on and on.  These “little” decisions add up.  And it is in making these decisions that we are actually CHOOSING wether we are working toward Life A or Life B.

So often, what I think I am choosing as a LIFE is not at all what I am supporting with all those “little” decisions every day of this life that is so quickly passing.

 

 

 

You Choose

You are given a choice of two teachers.

The one on the left will give you lots of compliments.  She will tell you you are doing great.  She will teach you knew skills, but only the ones she is sure you will master easily.

The one on the right will give you lots of corrections.  She will tell you you can do better.  She will teach you new skills, and at first, they will seem way too hard, but she will keep encouraging you and guiding you, and with your own commitment and diligence, you will master them.

Which teacher do you choose for yourself?

Which teacher do you choose for your children?