“Your ability to stand up for your truth is a muscle, and the more you exercise it the stronger it gets” Dan Pallota
Our world is a sphere of shifting moral and ethical values -the clear-cut delineation of black and white, has morphed into more than fifty shades of grey. Our values get challenged every-single-day. Sometimes our trials are easy to vanquish and when we do, we feel powerful and accomplished! Then again, there are those other times when these darn challenges prance into our lives looking almost exactly like that which we have dreamed of and prayed for, but when we look behind the curtain they are merely clever deceptions.
I have a friend who was looking for a better job, his ideal was less stress, more congenial colleagues, more flexibility and of course, more money. He searched for months without success. Finally he got a referral for a position offering him a greater salary than he’d imagined. The new opportunity appeared to be the solution to his financial problems. There were some initial red flags but my friend looked at his bills accumulating and decided that rather than pursuing the quest for his ideal situation, he’d just do what made sense and compromise. After all, that’s what reasonable people do-they compromise-don’t they?
He snagged that high paying job. Weeks and months passed. He sailed through the learning curve and to onlookers was exceeding company goals. However, after a particularly difficult staff meeting, my friend looked around his office and realized that despite his desire for a well-ordered work environment, he had compromised his way into a chaotic workplace, with an unreasonably rigid schedule and backstabbing colleagues. Now, he is miserable in the relative comfort his new income level affords him while he reflects woefully on his decision. What would have happened if he had turned down that attractive financial incentive and continued seeking the job that his Spirit desired? What would have happened if instead of compromising what he really wanted, he had decided to stand in faith?
You see, going after what you really want is like mining for precious gold near a shallow stream. You continuously pour soil sediment through your sifter, looking for pay dirt.
Recently I had back-to-back experiences that led me to believe that I was close to unearthing the prize I deeply desired, but I realized quickly, which means I’m kinda getting smarter, that I was about to mine yet another deposit of fool’s gold.
I’ll admit to feeling discouraged for a day or so, but then I realized that despite my realization that digging is frustrating and exhausting, I deserve to have what I really, truly want. I’ve committed to sharpening my spiritual pick axe because even though I had definitely struck fool’s gold once again, I have faith that my 24 carat gold nugget is getting closer!
There is value in the art of skillful compromise. I’m definitely not saying that an Olympic gymnast shouldn’t be thrilled to earn a bronze or silver metal when the objective of the training and hard work was to earn the gold medal. I’ve learned that in some cases we may know what we want, but not what it takes to get there. It can take a series of almost- getting- their experiences to provide the wisdom or the cojones to go for what we truly want!
The insight I continually retrace through my own life’s quest is that while it’s okay to incrementally get closer to my end goal, it’s unwise to compromise in a situation where I know full well going into it that the outcome will ultimately prove unsatisfactory. If we believe we deserve what we want, the only reasonable choice is to stand in that truth and believe that we can have the truest desires of our hearts.
Time and time again, that beautiful idea, opportunity or person that appears out of nowhere and seems too good to be true, really IS… too good to be true!
Pay attention. What you could be experiencing is the Universe giving a final exam. Beloved, did you learn the lesson?
– Susan D. Peters
Susan D. Peters, aka, Ahnydah (ah-NIE-dah) Rahm, brings a wealth of experience gained as an expatriate living in West Africa. Her memoir Sweet Liberia, Lessons from the Coal Pot, received the Black Excellence Award for Non-Fiction from the African American Alliance of Chicago and the Mate E. Palmer award for Non-Fiction from the Illinois Press Women’s Association. Broken Dolls, Susan’s second book, represents her foray into the mystery market and is the first of a series featuring Detective Joi Sommers as its heroine. Her most recent publication is Stolen Rainbow, a short story focused on the post combat recovery of a beautiful marine captain after a devastating combat injury. Her work is featured in three anthologies, Baring It All, the Ins and Outs of Publishing, Signed, Sealed, Delivered … I’m Yours, a contemporary romance anthology, and The Anthology of the Illinois Woman’s Press Association. Buy her books online and at www.SusanDPeters.com.
Photo credit: By Laura Lartigue, Technical Writing Specialist for USAID/Guinea – USAID, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/