Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Who am I? 2

I want to spend some time examining some of the different anecdotes that illustrate principles that I try to live my life by.

I don't want to be the old man in the flood.

The Story:

There a big flood and the old man is sitting in his rocking chair on the front porch and the flood water is lapping the bottom of the porch and the rescue workers come by in a boat and say "Come with us you have to evacuate." And the old man says, "I'm not leaving. I have faith. The Lord will save me."

A while later, the water is now up to the roof of the porch where the old man is now sitting and another boat comes and asks him to leave. And once again he refuses, "I have faith. The Lord will save me."

Finally the old man is perched on top of his chimney and a helicopter comes and says "Come on you HAVE TO GO." And the old man refuses "No! I have faith! The Lord will save me!"

And then the old man drowns and he gets to heaven and asks, "God! I had faith! Why didn't you save me?!" To which the Lord replies:

"I sent you two boats and a helicopter! What more did you want?!"

Which is a humorous way of saying just how important it is to realize help and salvation when the Lord sends it. He may not send it in the way that you want or they way that you think the help should come or be done. But He will send it and you need to be humble enough that you're willing to see things as they are and do what He would have you do.

That the goal anyways. I'm still learning. I still have times when I want the Lord to save me the way I want to be saved. But I hope I can catch on before I drown.

Now I know the following will surprise people who have only met me recently but I used to be a door mat. I had like no spine. If you hit me I'd probably apologize for running into your fist. And then I had one of my favorite people in the whole wide world tell me something:

There are people in this world who go around handing out steaming buckets of shit to other people. And they want you to gratefully take that steaming bucket of shit from them, thank them and dump it all over yourself. 

Any time some one tries to make you feel inferior that is a bucket of shit and you don't have to take it. 

And it has taken some doing for me to learn to recognize the buckets quickly. Some are cleverly disguised as high grade manure and some even come with a bow or from people who claim to love you or that you love. But they're still shit buckets. And once you recognize them as such you do not have to take it.

Its empowering. And its liberating. And life just feels a whole helluva lot better when you get good and fast at recognizing those buckets for what they are and rejecting them with as much vigor as if someone did actually try to walk up and dump manure on you.

And the reason it feels so right and so good and you only get better at it is because you have a divine right to protect your own life. And that includes the quality of your life. God wants you to have joy. No where in scripture does He say "lay down and take it". NO!

Nephi LEFT!! For those unfamiliar with the Book of Mormon the story starts with a family who flees Jerusalem at the time of the prophet Jeremiah, just before the city was destroyed and the inhabitants carried away captive to Babylon. The family of Lehi was lead by the Lord, to the coast where they built boats and sailed across the ocean to the Americas where they settled. Of Lehi's children the two oldest (Laman and Lemuel) were wicked and the younger sons were righteous and lead by the 4th brother Nephi.

After the death of Lehi the whole thing comes to a head and Nephi is warned in a vision that if he stays there his brothers will kill him and his family. And so Nephi takes his family and departs into the wilderness. He didn't stay there to die. He took his family and left. And it was the right thing to do. And more than that he made swords and shields and weapons and taught his people how to use them so that they could defend themselves.

If it becomes clear in a situation that a person is not going to stop trying to shovel shit all over me and they won't stop, my choice is to leave. Thats how I turn my cheek. And if they follow I have a right to defend my life.

Since I discovered this principle my life has been immeasurably more joyful. I grow in happiness, confidence and spine with every passing day. I am my own little fire ball now. And I LOVE IT.

And with most people, they usually back down once you point it out. "Wow that was rude!" has an amazing effect. You identified that there was a shit bucket present and refused to accept it. Do it with a smile and they're usually left sputtering an apology.

Try it. Its fun. What shit buckets are people handing out? Are you trying to give any to other people?

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the review. I have worked on this a long time. It is also amazing when you refuse to take the bucket they will actually be mad at you and call you rude plus other names. I am still working on this. I do agree with you that it is very empowering.