WHAT HAVE I LEARNED?
What have I learned in virtually a life time? Many things, some of critical nature and some more trivial. It is the former that now invites our attention.
(1) Life is essentially good. Consequently, it solicits our appreciation. Of God with whom it originates, of persons who enrich it, and circumstances that mediate it.
(2) Although with the condition it is lived according to God’s benevolent guidelines. Otherwise, it tends to unravel. Chaos sets in.
(3) It is assuredly more blessed to serve than to be served. So that we ought to make the most of such opportunities as present themselves. Moreover, by searching them out. While setting a precedent for others to emulate.
(4) Christ invites us to follow him. Then, in turn, to fellowship with others of like persuasion. Along with the intent to share the good news concerning his atoning death and resurrection, current intercession, and anticipated return. While incorporating a holistic ministry, that addresses the full range of human needs.
(5) Thus embracing a new set of priorities. One that honors God’s desires, and that of others, above our own. Unless, of course, they are shared.
(6) This also results in a rebirth. To an alternative life style. One that allows for the past, while drawn by the future, but lived in the present.
(7) God does not relegate to us tasks equal to our strength, but strength commensurate with our tasks. So that we mature in the process. Rather than remain as we were.
(8) If at first we do not succeed, we ought not to despair. Try again, while drawing upon what we have learned from the previous occasion. Perhaps along with the help of others.
(9) Engage life as if it were a race. Get a good start, maintain a vigorous pace, and finish strong. As would one who wishes to excel.
(10) Welcome each day as if it were the beginning of the rest of one’s life. Thus not unduly encumbered by the past. While making the most of creative alternatives.
(11) View life as if it were a sacred canopy, where God is to be glorified. Instead of reflecting the jungle code, with the survival of the fittest. Where lions prey on their victims.
(12) Treat others as we would have them treat us. Returning good for evil. While enduring with resolve.
(13) Dwell on your blessings. As a daily exercise, and it will come as a surprise how fortunate we are. Given the fact that we tend to take for granted that which we experience until it is taken away from us.
(14) Do not expect others to do for us what we are unwilling to do for ourselves. So not to embrace an entitlement mentality. Along with appreciation for those services which others render on our behalf.
(15) Cultivate genuine humility. Since nothing we do could have been accomplished without the input of others. Even life itself was a gift. However, do not depreciate self—as if a negative form of pride.
(16) Neither depreciate the good or evil inclinations we humans display. As illustrated by a angel sitting on one shoulder and a demon on the other. Giving rise to the notion that we avoid temptations is so far as possible.
(17) Do not confuse ends with means. So that while we may agree as to some worthwhile goal, we often advocate different strategies for accomplishing it. While coupled with the fact that our motivation is often a mix of more or less commendable features.
(18) Do not major in minor matters or minor in major concerns. While learning to distinguish between the two.
(19) If struggling with a matter of faith, obey; and if with a matter of obedience, then exercise faith. Since the two are coupled together, providing diverse means.
(20) Learn to embrace each stage of life, along with its unique benefits and pitfalls. While bearing in mind that life consists of change.