19 September 2011

When you write things down...

I've been spending a lot of time recently reading stories and blogs, and watching documentaries chronicling the lives of people who have big adventures or do incredible and good things for the world. I read blogs about families who are driving across continents in trucks powered by vegetable oil, or bicycling around the world. I just finished the first book written by Millard Fuller (founder of Habitat for Humanity and the Fuller Center for Housing) about his decision to give up a fortune he worked hard to earn to save his relationship with his family--the decision that would soon lead him to create the amazing organizations that give so many people an opportunity for a decent place to live today. I started reading a compilation of writings by Peace Pilgrim who spent years walking more than 25,000 miles through all 50 states with no possessions, vowing to not stop walking until the world finds peace. Brett and I went to an event held by the Akron Peace Project last night and watched watched a documentary about international peace day. On a scale of normal to crazy, the characters in these stories probably all fall in the range of very crazy to extremely crazy, but even if I find their lives to be perhaps beyond my ambitions (although they're probably not all that far off...) there's definitely something about the adventure and the meaning that they intentionally pursue that doesn't allow me to forget the place(s) where I've hoped my life will lead.

These reminders are good. They don't let me forget my immense fortune, nor my duty to share the blessings I've received. However, they also don't let me forget the incredible adventures that I'm not partaking in right now, and the big problems I'm not really doing much to help solve, which can get a little depressing.

The more I think about it though, the more I recognize that, although I think I am called in some way to make more intentionally good use of my life and my blessings, and although I know that there is so much in the world that I have yet to experience and learn, being in the place I'm in right now isn't so bad or wrong. I'm learning things, I'm doing good things, however small, and I'm having little adventures every day. It's unfair and unwise to discount these little things! And I think that if I truly am meant to go beyond my current state, I need to start by appreciating the present.

So that's why I'm writing again! I'm hoping that this will help me to both recognize and appreciate the opportunities I'm afforded to enjoy my life and to help someone else enjoy theirs... because both writing and sharing things just seems to make them a little more real. Maybe I'll also reach someone else who's sitting around reading blogs all day, waiting for the big adventure to come!

"When you write things down, they sometimes take you places you hadn't planned." - Melanie Benjamin

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