Do I believe God has a plan and purpose for your life? YES! Do I believe that God has great and mighty things to show you and give you and teach you throughout life? Absolutely! I do.
Do I believe that you may suffer hardships and pain along the way... sure. That's how we GROW! It's also how we LEARN!
Some of that is placed upon us - and some of it, we place upon ourselves.
The catch in that plan for you - is that tricky little thing he also gave us...... FREE WILL.
You know right from wrong, just as well as you know up from down.
Whether you were raised with a religious background or not - most people are born with a common sense of direction and decency. You don't get up tomorrow and rob a bank, JUST because the law says it's wrong... you (hopefully) don't get up and rob a bank tomorrow because you fundamentally know it's wrong. It's not YOUR money and you would be stealing from another. The free will comes into play in whether or not you choose to use that common sense or just ignore it and carry on in your own blissful ignorance. The free will is when you CHOOSE to block out that common decency you have inside you and ignore the fact that YOU stealing money has an affect on someone else. It HURTS someone else.
So while free will is a gift, it can also be twisted into a curse..... JUSTIFICATION for OWN SELF exoneration! ENTITLEMENT. OH how entitlement runs rampant these days. The world OWES you something so you justify the pain you inflict. Someone hurt YOU - so you justify hurting them back. Someone let you down so you use that anger and bitterness to in turn hurt someone else!
As we travel through this life, we all make mistakes. We might wrong someone that hurts them intentionally. Or we might wrong someone unintentionally. And... unfortunately, someone else makes a choice that wrongs us. ALL FREE WILL.
Here's the catch for me...... I read something earlier that really hit home with me. (be patient, I'll share)
Sometimes I take wrong roads. Sometimes I make wrong decisions. Sometimes my focus or my pathway gets a little bit skewed and I get lost and off track for a
Here's where it gets even trickier..... what if someone ELSE makes a choice that effects me? Someone else walked down the wrong path and dragged me with them (remember, I have free will too.... there I go walking right along beside them) but regardless, THEY make the decision that ultimately knocks me right back flat on my butt. And I'm left sitting..... wondering...... what just happened? What did I do? I thought I was doing the right thing....
And guess what - sometimes YOU ARE doing the right thing. Sometimes you ARE on the right path. And sometimes someone else trips up and falls... and oooops... they pulled you right down with them.???
AGAIN..... ALL FREE WILL.....
Here's what I learned tonight
NO MATTER who tripped.... no matter who walked down the wrong road.... whether you chose it yourself or whether you were walking along side someone else and THEY made the decision that knocked you down....
YOU HAVE TWO CHOICES.
#1 - you can let the choice AFFLICT you. You can allow your own mistake or someone else's mistake to paralyze you to the point of not even recognizing right from wrong anymore. You are AFFLICTED. By yourself, by God, by another.... but regardless, you choose to be AFFLICTED. This means you have CHOSEN to allow this set-back, this stumble, this fall to CONTROL you. It changes you for the worse. You become sooooo obsessed with this mistake that it begins to rule your entire life. And you know what happens then.... you KEEP trying that same road... over and over and over thinking that one day YOU will overcome. One day you won't get knocked down. One day you will be ENTITLED to overcome! You deserve it after all.... You've EARNED it! And your wrong. Wrong is wrong is wrong, no matter how many times you try it.
#2 - you can let the choice AFFECT you. So you made a mistake. Big whoop. We're human for goodness sake. NO-ONE, no matter how they present themselves to be, is perfect. NO-ONE. So you make mistakes, others make mistakes... and God gives you free will to MAKE mistakes.
The difference is with this AFFECT, you LEARN from your mistakes. You learn from others mistakes. You do the most important thing you can possibly do and that is forgive yourself for falling and REMEMBER why you fell and then use your free will to CHOOSE not to go down that road again.
So whether you MAKE a mistake or someone else MAKES a mistake that impacts you, choose to let that decision AFFECT you, NOT AFFLICT you. Let yourself off the hook. God isn't keeping score. And contrary to what most people think, other people really aren't keeping score either.... most of us are doing our best to survive our OWN life's ups and downs. We're too busy to really give a crap about whether you messed up or not and what the score is.... or whether or not you are I have been vindicated!
LOVE FREELY, LAUGH OFTEN, LIVE TO THE FULLEST
and most of all
FORGIVE YOURSELF......... be AFFECTED, not AFFLICTED!
Let it die and move on to a better life.
We choose to let life rule us - OR let God rule our life!
I also came across this quote from Jeremy from another blog that I now follow.
It was intense and I wanted to share.
The scream of anguish can be deafening. The darkness of pain can be blinding. But the hope found through letting go and trusting God radiates with faith that new days are ahead. God can bring forth true love and beauty from the painful corridors of our hearts, but we must let go of the dark places. Yes, the task of letting go is just as hard as the initial heartache, but in the end, I am hoping that it will be worth it.