Friday, July 11

Riding a mule while looking for a horse | Useful Quotes

Paulus com Mulus in Silva Ambulat

by Rodrigo Silveira

Imagine with me, if you would, a book with a best-seller sticker on its cover. Pick up the book on a fresh, dark, rainy day during an unusually hot and sticky never-ending summer. You’re sitting on a very comfortable leather chair, one of those big ones you usually associate with your grandfather’s house and his exquisite taste for weird furniture. You can see your backyard through a big glass door a few feet in front of you, as the rain descends rhythmically and in a controlled pace. The occasional thunder rings in your ears as the deep bass of a lively surround system, almost transporting you, as it were, right into the strange tale you are reading about in the book you’re holding.

Now, what happens if you read the first chapter of this book with many actors, and the summary of the whole chapter could be written in the words, “everything is good.” Then, as you approach the end of the second chapter, you realize that in the story you’re reading, everything is still pretty good... Then chapters three, four, five, six, and seven through seventeen also say that everything is just fine. In fact, up to the second to last chapter, you realize that sure enough, things are still going wonderfully. Would you finish reading such a book? I think Brother James answered it best when he suggested that, “the answer is NO!”

We all know someone who is characterized by constant and severe complaining. Others only complain about the difficulties of life. Some hope, dream, and try to change things so that life would be so perfect, that there would be nothing in all the world to cause the most unnoticeable evidence that a minute challenge existed. Now, how boring would that be?! Why would anybody want to read the account of your flawless life in a book?

There’s a narrative of antiquity that informs us that people will fall short of living an extraordinary life when they fail to gain understanding. More specifically the understanding that life will always consist of opportunity mixed with risk, trials and triumphs, setbacks and serenity, pleasure and pain. Once we can understand that, and once we can accept and embrace this reality, only then will we be able to turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones.

The story teller also tells us that there is for every season a reason, and for every kind its time. There is time to glow and a time to shine. A time to avoid and a time to embark. Time to let words be clumsy and a time to rhyme. The key is to balance the clock and never mix the hours. When you laugh, laugh, when you cry, cry, when you work, work, and when you play, play. But never laugh when it’s time to cry, and don’t you ever play at work.

There is a ward in the English language that describes the phenomena known to us as the seasons. The four natural seasons are so amazing that it can help us tie these two concepts together. Go back with me in your mind to a few years ago, however far back you wish to go. If you stop your thoughts to the time when it was winter, slowly jump ahead the clock to the season right after those cold days. What followed? Spring! Ask anybody you want. I promise you this will always be the same so matter where you are or who you are. After the rain, not while it’s raining, but right after the storm is when the birds come out and sing. So it is in our lives. After we’re down, if we wait long enough, we’ll come back up to the top again. The key is to look to the future with anticipation, rather than with apprehension. Don’t get the timing wrong! Winter is not the time to hibernate, it’s time to prepare for the summer. When a challenge comes your way, it’s not time to complain, it’s time to be thankful.

Life is good, ladies and gentleman. Life is not easy, but it’s rewarding. Life doesn’t give us what we need, but rather it gives us what we deserve. I once heard my dear grandmother say that it’s better to have one bird on your hands, than two in the sky. So it is with life. It’s better to ride a mule than walk on your own feet and carry all your load by yourself, but it’s much better to look for that horse while you ride the mule.

Rodrigo Silveira :: [no-monopoly-on-good-ideas]

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