If only someone had told me that I was right. The older I grow, the more I find out that I came to conclusions when I was 19 that were totally correct. I saw the world in an unadulterated bluntness, that could’ve carried me to greatness. But you know what held me back?
BITTERNESS. Bitter offense, bitter arrogance, bitter owed”ness”.
I took the conclusions I had come to and lorded them over people. I felt like i was owed something because i had been taught well, because i had experienced goodness and mercy at the hands of a living God. So i ran from Him too, because he wasn’t giving me the things i thought i deserved. And then i stewed.
Have you ever stewed apples? You chuck a bunch of them in a pan with water and sugar and just wait. After a while you can’t tell the water from the apples and sugar because it has all become a thick liquid together. That was my outlook on life. Bitterness was so infused and stewed into even my body, that where i walked, where i sat, what i talked about, what i was entertained by, what jobs i chose were all blinded and coloured by my deep sense of bitterness. Bitterness that said i deserved more than i currently had.
In hindsight, i had many people tell me i was bitter. I told myself i was bitter. I even championed bitterness as a good thing. As if drinking poison and surviving should qualify you to become a doctor. It wasn’t that i didnt know i was bitter, or that i didnt know it was probably bad for me. It was that i didn’t know how to live life without bitterness. I didnt know there was freedom available. I didnt know that i was actually correct, but the way to roll out my correct conclusions was through submission and humility, as opposed to aggressive elitism and intentional rebellion.
In fact i would go as far as to say, that i have been gifted with an ability to see how to do things better than many. But… Lets just assume that i am right when i say that. For example, we are organising a bake sale. And lets say i know, that to make the most profit we need to use the freshest butter and the cheapest flour because that keeps costs down and the fresh butter keeps people coming back for more. But if no one else knew that, then how do i communicate this? Especially if the other guy helping to organise it thinks that we shouldnt even use butter, because there is a cheaper synthetic replacement.
My old blueprint would be to either, bluntly argue with everyone until i get my way or quit. OR the complete opposite. Internally beat myself and the other guy up. Devalue everyone because no one is listening to me and their baking is going to suck and i hope they die in a fire.
Both are responses that most 7 year olds refuse to even do. But, the stewed apple of bitterness in my gut prevented me from taking that deep breath to think about complimenting everyone, being positive and up beat, and showing – not just speaking – the possibilities of the fresh butter.
If only someone had told me that the hospitable positivity instilled in me from birth by my mother and father combined with the “how tos” of life, instilled into me by the thouasands of people i have had the privilege to do life alongside could have seen me change the world like i had originally dreamed sooner as well as later.