Confess. Apologize Sincerely. Move On. (5YTL)

happinessHave you ever screwed up, royally?

Most, if not all, people have made a big blunder and carried the weight of it around silently.  In that silence lives a regret and dread that carries immeasurable weight and remorse.  The burden of that weight is far heavier than whatever infraction comprises it.

I had a (former) business partner once who had made some seriously poor business decisions that included illegal activity.  In the height of his falsely-propped success, he had to confess to his poor decisions and face the music.  It had to have been a very frightening time for him and his family (who stood by him in his loneliest times).  In those quiet and private times leading up to his confessions, I imagine that fear and guilt plagued him with unending persistence.

I’ve had those times where I’ve made a bad turn and the waiting for the other shoe to fall was deafening and crippling.  It’s physically painful.  The fear of the unknown, in itself, is difficult for us, but when we know the near future is destined to be unpleasant, we’ll take the devil we know for a long time before facing our own particular music.

The power of confession brings with it a surrender to light.  Much like a bar at 3am, the light can reveal its own brand of ugly, but it reveals the truth, and there’s beauty in truth.  It may not reveal what we want others to see, but it unsnarls the chains we’ve held ourselves in to pave the way to freedom.

Like my former business partner, it is possible to take responsibility for our actions, confess our gravest sins, apologize to those whom we’ve wronged, and move on in the light.

The right decision hasn’t always been my friend, but I have learned that I am capable of change and making better decisions. I have learned, through experience, that my past mistakes do not define my future.  I have learned that the decision to invest in others, and not detracting from them, is an investment in myself, too.  It, likewise, builds me up and increases my worth.

If you’re facing the painful prospect of confession, you are not alone.  You are not the first to face the music, although your brand belongs to you.  I heard a great quote last week:

“The way to Life is not around pain, but through it.”

No matter what life has in store for you, I hope you’ll move past your fear, turn on the light, and unchain yourself from whatever holds you back from being the amazing person you are meant to be.  We have all made mistakes.  We have all lived through difficulty.  We all deserve the chance to pursue our greatness.

You’re One Of Us.  Tomorrow Begins Today.

If Opportunity Doesn’t Knock, Build A Door (5YTL)

opportunityKnock, Knock, Knock, Knock, Knock, Knock.

In Luke 11, we are advised that doors are opened when we knock.  Have you ever had that experience where you knock on a door, and no one hears your knock?  So, you wait for a bit and knock again, this time a little louder.  You hear voices inside, so you know that someone’s on the other side.  You wait, fidget from one foot to the other and knock again.

It’s uncomfortable.

The truth is that the only way to get from this side of the door to the other is to keep knocking until the door is opened.  That discomfort you feel?  That fear that wells up inside you as you wait?  It’s part of a process.  It’s part of how you grow from what you know on this side of the door to the possibilities that await you on the other side of the door.

The most important thing is that you keep knocking.  You knock, and you knock, and you knock until the door opens.  You’re promised that the door will open.  Your own perseverance is what eventually opens the door.

  • Cold calling in sales
  • Playing or singing your part perfectly
  • Reaching your congregation
  • Managing your team effectively
  • Connecting with your mate
  • Writing your great story
  • Starting the *right* business
  • Breaking your addiction
  • Completing your degree program
  • Loving yourself

All of these are examples of the need to keep knocking.  “Persistence pays off,” we’re told, and knocking gives us something to do while we grow through our discomfort and fear.  Consequently, it also moves us forward toward our goal of getting through that door.

I’m not just suggesting that you not give up.  I’m telling you to actively pursue your goal.  Not giving up may only imply that you not give up hope.  Hope without action is just a feeling.  Hope without belief is also just a feeling.  I want you to believe and take action.  Whatever your “knock” is, you have to knock every day.  You have to knock loudly and constantly.

“Ask and you’ll get; Seek and you’ll find; Knock and the door will open.”  Tomorrow Begins Today.