Wall? What Wall?

There is one way — and only one — to know who you truly are in this wild mortal life.

Run headlong, like a man or woman on fire, into a challenge.

You will never fathom what you can do, who you can become, until you do.

Everybody eventually hits a wall too high to jump, too steep to climb. Plenty of little human chihuahuas will yip and bark their despair at you when you hit it. They’ll claim it impossible. They’ll yap and yammer on that you can’t clear it — that it can’t be done. Most of them have never dared take a run at it.

Steve Jobs delivered a commencement at Stanford a few years ago, just after his cancer diagnosis, and he said something that will ring in the ears of my heart for life. Steve warned that eager crowd that time is short, don’t spend it living someone else’s life.

I say, amen. I say be the someone else most everyone else won’t dare become. Okay, it’s a tad confusing, but it’ll make sense when you roll over at 3 am.

This is a season of life’s sweeping resolutions. People make promises to themselves, then break them when they find the resolution is a wall that looks, or feels, too hard to break and too high to clear. Because it bloodied them once, too many won’t try again. They won’t look for a way around!

Instead of making a resolution, make a life. Remake yourself into what you want, into who you feel called to become. Good science reminds us the mind is a flexible. We can bend it, shape and re-shape it. Think and act for yourself, not at the behest of someone else. Ignore the yip of the little dog. Become, instead, the alpha dog, the one of quiet courage, strength, compassion. Lead — starting with yourself.

Camus wisely said the best way to deal with the shackles and walls of this world is to become so free, even your very existence is an act of rebellion. All the greats have done it. Your inner great will as well. Let him out to run. Set her free to fly. Sure, you’ll smack the wall, face first, more than once. It may pulp the hell out of you. This is human. But freed from the despair of sleepwalking through a withering life the yapping masses demand you live, you will waken to one so great, you couldn’t imagine it. You’ll clear the walls, one after another. And you’ll begin to know, at last, how stout our mysterious Maker made you after all.

Wall? Yep, it’s there. And another one behind it. They are uniquely your walls in this wilderness life. And beyond them is your paradise. Go. And go well. In going, you’re bound to show others the way.

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3 Responses to “Wall? What Wall?”

  1. Beth McDougald Says:

    Beautifully said. Thank you for you wise and well timed words! May you be richly blessed throughout 2013!

  2. Again, your words speak to me…and very loudly these. I am being guided. Now to make myself walk the path God has for me, the journey I am meant to make.
    Thank you Michael.

  3. swayablesophist Says:

    Thank you for your posting! I hope you and your family had a frabjous Holiday Season! Your Korean “Brother from another Mother” 🙂

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