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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

"I Can't . . . ."

I've been thinking about the phrase "I can't . . ."

We use this phrase so often to describe something that we actually can do. We just don't put out the effort to actually do it, for a variety of very logical reasons. So we just say "I can't . . .", and no one bothers to question the validity of our statement.

I can't lose weight

I can't pay my bills

I can't eat healthy

I can't love my spouse like I should

I can't afford to give

I can't play with my children

I can't discipline my children

I can't clean my house

I can't create a budget

I can't live like I want

I can't live like I believe

I can't be nice to him or her

I can't be entirely faithful

BECAUSE (And then there's the excuse that follows)

I don't have the time

I don't have the energy

I'm sick

I'm too busy

I can't get any help

I'm too scared

I'm not smart enough

No one cares

I'm too poor

I'm too stressed

They won't let me

Some of these reasons/excuses are true at a specific point of time, but should never be used to explain away an entire area of life that should be managed wisely. We can be healthy. We can manage our lives. We can love each other. We can pay our bills. We can do all of these things, but an incredible thing has happened. We have lobotomized ourselves as a society. In this "fast food" era, we have become more enamored with the Reward than with the Requirements of the reward. We look at something we want, and say "I'll have that please, with a side of self-worth".

Then we wait . . . and wait . . . and wait, and the longer we wait, the more disillusioned we become. We go about life, all the while becoming more frustrated and depressed, and we don't really know why. We really are sheep!

It's asinine. We are becoming a people who wait for what never comes. It's like a farmer walking out to his fields at harvest and saying, "Where's my crop?" while having not planted a single seed.

This society has refused to play by the rules. We have asked for the equation of life to be disassembled. We only want the result, when the reality is that the principles of success remain constant. Simply put, X(desire) + Y(work) = Reward! It doesn't read X(desire) = Reward! That formula is totally devoid of logic, and that's exactly where we find ourselves today. We have thrown away the steps and are devastated that we can't reach the top.

Yes, it's absurd, but the fact that we have such a large membership roster allows our absurdity to hide behind the chaos. We are the vast majority, so it is hard to see forest for the trees, until an occasional person stands out. Then we notice. Then we are in awe of his or her SUCCESS. The real absurdity is that our chaotic lives are a direct result of our lack of principle and standards for living. In fact, one could ask where all the standards have gone. We refuse to acknowledge these all-important axioms, therefore many of us feel stupid and miserable, like the universe is plotting against us.

Self indulgence can create an epidemic of apathy . . . an "I can't" mentality, and we all are effected. The successful few are those who break away and take the phrase "I can't . . ." to put it in its proper, logical place:

I can't live like this any longer

I can't accept any thing less than what God gives and I know there's more

I can't accept apathy in my life, my family, or my church

The successful person understands the equation, that there are God-given principles that guarantee our success. I would actually go so far as to say that these principles play a role in the abundant life that Christ has promised us . . . at least to a certain extent in the physical realm. Paul even talks about running the race before us when applying these concepts to our Spiritual journey. The successful person is one who trusts that these principles work and believes them to be axioms of abundance, self-evident truths that work when applied to our belief systems and therefore affect our actions and produce abundant results. It's simple . . . on paper. In real life, it takes a disciplined mind to go against the flow, to say "I can't take this anymore!" and "I will change!" instead of joining the chorus of defeatism.

If we want to lose weight, then we exercise and eat right. We can do that. If we want to have healthy relationships with each other and God, then we put in the time to spend on other people and the Kingdom. We can do that. If we want to be financially independent, then we pay off our debt through hard work and sacrifice, and live a slave to no man. We can do that.

We have to apply these axioms to our lives. Yes, it takes time. Yes, it takes work. But look at your life now. You spend lots of time and work really hard . . . for what? Depression? Frustration? "I can't"?

I love this song by Switchfoot . . .

Fumbling his confidence
And wondering why the world has passed him by
Hoping that he's bet for more than arguments
And failed attempts to fly
Fly

We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
Somewhere we live inside
Somewhere we live inside
We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
Somewhere we live inside

Dreaming about Providence
And whether mice or men have second tries
Maybe we've been living with our eyes half open
Maybe we're bent and broken
Broken

We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
Somewhere we live inside
Somewhere we live inside
We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
Somewhere we live inside

We want more than this world's got to offer
We want more than this world's got to offer
We want more than the wars of our fathers
And everything inside screams for second life
Yeah

We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
We were meant to live for so much more
Have we lost ourselves?
We were meant to live
(We were meant to live)
We were meant to live



For God and King!

Peace.

© Copyright Derek Hickman 2008

1 comment:

Chris said...

I just wanted to let you know that I ended up gatting a new liver. As usual, God knew His timing was the right timing. I'm recovering extremely well, and look forward to being a testimony to God's miracles in my life. He never fails. I hope you are continually blessed in your life and endeavours.