Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Choices, Chances, Changes

I have decided that if I am going to overcome my feelings of bitterness and resentment, I need to focus on the positive things in my life rather than on the negative events of the past.  I have spent a part of each day recently reading a devotion and praying (something I had gotten away from during the past few months).  In my prayers I have realized how much I have to be thankful for ... my family, good friends, a home, a secure job.  I have a wonderful son who has shown me recently that he truly wants me to move on with my life and be happy.  I still have both of my parents and a grandmother who support me in everything I do and a granddaughter that brings laughter every time she is around.  I have friends who have listened to me, cried with me, stood by me, and seen me through the toughest times in my life.  I have also had some new people come into my life who have quickly become good friends with which I've been able to share happy times and make new memories.  I am close to completing my specialist's degree in elementary education, and I recently received a grant that is going to equip my classroom with the newest technology for the upcoming school year.  I realize that I have a very busy and hopefully happy future to look forward to.

Just as my prayers have helped me see what I have to be thankful for, the devotions I've been reading have reminded me of what I knew but had forgotten for a while ... I am not alone.  I have come across devotions on anxiety, worry, stress, fear, forgiveness, hope, patience, relationships, and trusting God just when I seemed to need them the most.  Today's devotion was "Believe in the light" (John 12:36), and a part of it said "I realized God had been hovering near, feeling my pain ready to embrace me with a hug.  All I had to do was pay attention.  All I needed to do was listen.  And with Him by my side, I could pick myself up and feel my way to the light." 

In an effort to "pick myself up" I've decided it's time to be open to new people, new things, and new relationships in my life.  I built a wall around myself three years ago as a means of survival, and I've kept it there ever since.  But regardless of how scary it may be, I no longer want to keep myself and my feelings closed off in an effort to avoid future hurt and pain.  I realize now that while keeping the hurt and the pain out, I was also keeping the happiness, joy, and love out.  The lyrics of a Lady Antebellum song describe perfectly how I feel now ... "Seems like I was walking in the wrong direction.  I barely recognize my own reflection.  Seems I've been playing on the safe side, building walls around my heart to save me ... but it's time for me to let it go ... I'm ready to feel now.  No longer am I afraid of the fall down.  It must be time to move on now without the fear of how it might end." 

Life is about taking chances.  Some of those chances may lead to mistakes and heartache, but some of them will also lead to triumphs and happiness.  We cannot predict or plan how our life will turn out, and I've learned that we have to take the bad with the good.  But if we never take a chance at all things will always stay the same, and we will never know what we might be missing.  Choices, Chances, Changes - You must make a Choice to take a Chance or your life will never Change (author unknown).

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