Friday, September 16, 2005


Sometimes you reach a point in your life, it is like a brick wall. Sometimes things seem to just not go right. The natural instinct of a person is to automatically begin to trace back their actions of the past, or perhaps rewind their life and figure out what went wrong. It makes me wonder what they are truly searching for. Sometimes I think people actually have the aspirations of one day reaching the point of never having to suffer again. They truly believe that their will come a day that their will be no more struggles, and that life will move smooth. People begin to ponder over what changes in their life can bring this to pass. They start to pick apart their life and turn it into a what if. What if I had more money. What if I wasn't married, They trace back their past decisions, the past steps they have taken throughout their life. They begin to picture their life if they would of made the opposing decision, and in their mind they paint a picture of the "what if" life, and it always seems pretty, and beautiful. It appears to be problem free. Only happy feelings exist their. Why is this?

I seem to feel as if I am making the right decisions, then I look at other peoples lives, only from a distance. It's like looking at a painting, an oil painting. Their is one thing I have noticed in my career, or in my history of art, any time you look at a painting from a distance it seems to be perfect. In fact I took a class in college and one of our first projects was to pick a painting and reproduce it using the computer, using Photoshop to be exact. My reproduction seemed to be coming along very well. Other class mates would look at my computer screen from across the class at a distance, I noticed them starting to walk up to my computer to gain a closer look. Only when they came closer I would turn to see their face and disappointment would be staring back at me. I then zoomed out of my computer, to see the view they were looking at. I even got up and stood across the room, and looked at my screen. On my screen was a reproduction of a painting that appeared to be an exact replica of the painting. But at a closer look it was a blob of mush, just colors mixed together, and a blur of reality. I think that is the same vision we gain of our peers lives. I see the lives of friends and family, and everything seems to be going right for them. I wonder what I am doing wrong, and what everyone else is doing right. I talk to friends from my mission, and they are living in houses, they have good paying jobs, they are happy. They aren't struggling to pay there bills. So I begin to trace through the blue print of my life, only I am staring through a microscope, and I see every single tiny flaw of my life. Then I begin to create the reason for the problems in my life. I begin to understand why things aren't going right. I'm a freakin loser. Why should things work out. Either that or you don't see flaws, and you see that you have been doing the right things. So then you need an ulterior reason for your mishaps. So then you think some greater power is against you, but for everyone else. So then you start rethinking your whole reason behind what you do, and why you do it. Then you start to justify wrong actions, you begin to say well I was doing the right things, and it wasn't working.

But that brings up a question in my mind. Why should a good decision equal an instant reward. Why should a bad decision equal an instant consequence. I feel that if that were the case it would be to easy. Besides you shouldn't do good things, or live a morally clean life because you will be rewarded, you should do it out of respect for yourself. You should do it for the soul purpose of it being the right thing. Do it because you want to do it, not for what you potentially will receive. So then I look at my life, and all I need to work on. I see all my weaknesses, but they aren't reasons. I think I struggle so that I can learn. I think you are able to truly understand people and yourself when you are in a crisis. That is when a true person appears, that is when you really see who you are, and who others are.

In Highschool in basketball I would notice how hard people would practice during practice, when the coach was there with the whistle hanging loosely at the tip of his lip. His arms to his waist, and his back at a subtle slouch. Everyone was running, and pushing themselves. Then I would get on that same court with the same people only the coach would be gone, and not present in the gym. Then you would see how they really played. That is when you would see who your team mates really were. It is the choices you make when you aren't seeing any selfish rewards to reap. It is the choices that people make for themselves, the choices made when no one is around, when no one is looking. The choices someone makes when they are walking down a street all alone with everyone locked away in there houses, and a wallet is on the street. The decision you make right then and their is who YOU really are. So God wants to know who we really are, so he leaves us to ourselves, he sees what types of decisions we make all alone. But truthfully it isn't so God can see who we really are. I don't think that is the purpose of this life. Infect that is what everyone feeds you. It is like that poem about footprints. I don't by into that, I don't think God is carrying us through the hardest parts of our life. I think we are all alone, and I don't think it is for him, I think it is so we can finally figure out who we are. I think there is a disease in the world today, and I think that the majority of the world doesn't know who they are. They haven't stopped long envoy to think about it. They spend to much time tracing back the steps of their lives, trying to figure out who is to blame for the problems of there lives. They want to know why there life isn't moving smoothly, like the paintings of the peoples lives they see off in the distance.

I find myself doing the same thing, the difference is I try to take the time in myself to stop myself, and then I begin to analyze myself instead, I try to see the areas of my life I need to work on. Then I question my purpose. I ask myself why I want to be that type of person. Anytime I catch myself answering in a selfish response, like of what type of reward or blessing I will receive from a decision, I stamp it void, and I think of a new purpose. Until I finally realize the true reason for living up to the standards that I have set for myself. It's so I can respect myself, it is so when I look in the mirror I will love the person I am looking at. If I don't love that person how can I ever expect anyone else to. So when I begin to see my life, and then I question my choices, and I judge the correctness of my choices by where I am in life. Like as in with my job situation, I started to think judge my decision on my job by how it has ended up for me, and I am seeing that it is all going down hill, I am not making as much as expected, and I am seeing other things in my life crashing down around me. So then I start to think I must of made the wrong decision because my life isn't smoothly flowing along.

Infact I look back at all my decisions in life, and I think about how everything just seems to be crashing down around me, and problem after problem keeps coming right after the other, until I have a mountain of problems, only when people look at my life from a distance they see a small hill of problems. Only I am right up next to the problems, so they seem to be a mountain of problems. So then I start to think that I don't know what I am doing, and I am just making all the wrong decisions, because for some reason I have built up this expectation that a right decision in life should mean an absence of all problems. So if we were to all make the right decisions in life, then we would be able to breeze through life without any struggles or hardships. I even see my family and peers staring at me, and pointing there finger and telling me, "See I told you not to make that decision." "I told you not to buy that car." "You shouldn't of gotten married so soon." "I told you, you weren't ready for a baby." it goes on for days, it seems in everyone else's eyes that I can't make a decision, and they question every decision I make. They send me e-mails of warning, they tell me they are just trying to help me out. They judge my decisions of whether or not it actually clears away a nice smooth road. So I wonder why that is. Why have we all built up this mirage of reality, that the proof of a good decision is the absence of strife, and an absence of obstacles in our path? (this in no way is stating taht I don't want people to express there opinions with me, I apreciate all advice, I am only questioning the reason for it)

So how can we really judge whether a decision were the right or wrong decision?

My answer, which I have come to through 24 (almost 25) years of life is that you judge a decision by how you come out of it in the end. I say if you progressed, and came away a stronger and a better person, then it was a right decision. If you come out of it a weaker person, then it was a bad decision. If it stops your progression.

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