As we travel our own faithful journeys, many of us notice that some things and people don’t change, no matter how much we wish they would. And many of us have fought, labored, and struggled to change or fix something or someone unready for change.
It’s like trying to kill a mosquito — pick your figurative one — with a machete. In the process, we usually succeed at loping off a proverbial finger, hand, or arm. And as we sit in the emergency room of life, awaiting treatment, we’re scratching the mosquito bite we got anyway.
This is an exercise in futility, an ineffectual and unfulfilling attempt to find comfort, peace, and especially, relief. When we get caught in cycles of futility, we falsely believe that if we try it one more time, it — whatever “it” is — will change. We may justify our actions by asserting these anthems of futility: “But . . . we’ve always done it this way” or “But . . . I always go this way” or “But . . . this is the only way that will work” or “But . . . they won’t like it.”
In the process, we keep ourselves stuck by what we believe and what we say, so we never experience the relief we truly desire, like the Greek myth of Sisyphus, forever trying to push a boulder up a mountain.
If we’re ready to find the relief and peace of mind we seek, let us consider whether we’re also ready to let these go:
- Acquiring more and more possessions, always expecting the next thing to make us happy.
- Needing everything to be perfect.
- Needing everyone to like us and/or agree with us.
- Needing to be “right.”
- Arguing with someone who doesn’t value respect and mutuality, and doesn’t want to listen.
- Lashing out to diminish others so we feel better about ourselves.
- Rehashing the past, either blaming ourselves or others for outcomes which didn’t work.
- Worrying about the future and trying to prepare for every imaginable outcome.
- Gunny-sacking and holding onto to old upsets and grievances.
- Thinking that loving and liking are synonymous.
- Believing that we can mature spiritually when we’re emotionally unhealthy.
- Demanding certainty in a world which can be uncertain.
- Trying to steer the Universe while we tell God how it’s “supposed” to be.
Each of these blocks our spiritual growth and hinders the ease, comfort, love, peace, and ultimate relief so many of us seek.
Yet, at any moment, no matter where we are on our journey, we can change our minds, alter our beliefs, and act differently. No matter what has been true for us before, we can choose to let go and let God. And with trust and faith, we’re relieved to discover how many new paths await us on our way.
© 2018 – Rev. Jennifer L. Sacks. All rights reserved.