Friday, May 3, 2013

Me, Honestly: Day Three

5/1 -The past three months have been spent in a total funk and it’s time to come out. 
Last night I spent a few hours with an incredible, inspiring friend, who saw something in me worth fighting for.  I hate to say I didn’t think I was worth the trouble, but at that point, I didn’t.
So as I tweeted yesterday, I am spending the next seven days examining my core as a means to move forward.   I’m doing it question by question.
I wrote some stuff I might be okay to answer, then started over.  Then I thought about what I absolutely don’t want to discuss, and that’s what you’ll see below.  I humbly give you Me, Honestly.
 

Are you ready for success?

My prayer:
Lord, thank you for all your blessings.  I ask that you put me where I need to be and keep me far from where I shouldn't be.  Let me know better and do better.  Let me stay faithful in all things, doubtful in nothing.  Lord God, lift me when I'm in trouble, love me all the time...and bless me when I'm ready.
And here I am, several years in, still praying the same prayer.  This is the last year of that, though.  I think I figured it out.
Actual words vary, but I always make sure to ask for my blessings to come when I’m ready to receive them.  Praying for the right things has its drawbacks.  If I'm not ready to receive, nothing will come my way.  So what was I praying for?  There had been no point until recently.
It took asking a lot of internal questions before I could admit this to myself.  Every time I saw someone who had something I wanted, I had to go through this process.  It went something like:
1.       You have something I want.  Is this admiration or jealousy?
2.       I’m jealous.  Why do you get that, and I don’t?
3.       I’m wondering.  Do you appreciate it as much as I would?
4.       I’m rationalizing.  Is it something you need? 
5.       I’m curious.  If not, do you have what you do need?
6.       I’m losing my own argument.  Is what you have something I actually need?
7.       Do I have a right to be jealous of something someone else has that I don’t need?
8.       Don’t I have the things I need?

Note the transition from want  to need  here.  And since the answer to the last question is always ‘yes,’ I have to give thanks:  Lord, thank you for all your blessings.  I ask that you put me where I need to be and keep me far from where I shouldn’t be…
What does this have to do with anything?  Clearly my idea of success and actual success will never be the same.  It’s another thing that me and Ideal butt heads over.  She talks about palm trees, white beaches and crystal clear water.  I say I can hang a poster of that picture on a wall in a house that is paid off.   That's paradise to me. 
Wow.  My brand of success is pretty humble, then.  Now that I know it, am I ready for it?
Another round of questions.  I ask these of myself evey day:
1.       Have I done what it takes to get it?
2.       Will I glorify myself enough to do what it takes to get it?
3.       Am I willing to fight for it?
4.       Will I humble myself enough to do what it takes to get it?
5.       Am I willing to love for it?
6.       When it’s mine, will I know what to do with it?

The work is a trick of the hand.  The woman beneath the cape makes the real magic happen.  That’s why the first question is a given.  Of course I'll do what it takes.  But if my heart isn’t in it, nothing matters.

I have to be ready to bare teeth when the time comes, because some people aren’t out to help me.  I must recognize them, see what they don’t show, and hear what they don’t say.  Otherwise, I’ll fail. 
Conversely, I have to humble myself and show love to others, remember their names and faces.  Without the ones who help me, I will have nothing.  When the time comes, I need make sure their due is paid.

If I am not willing to do this, I don't want to cross that finish line.
The hardest part is knowing what to do with it.  This is why, over time, I learned to never pray for a winning lottery ticket.  The thing about luck is it runs out.  I need forever.  That takes discipline, common sense, and humility--not luck. 
Miracles are nice, too, but to me, they're based on need as well.  It's another thing I avoid asking for when I can.   In fact, my goal in life is to never need one.
To be successful, I have to be a lot of things first.  Determined, brave, humble, fearless, and in need of the lesson this journey will provide. 

So, am I?  I am, I am, I am. 
Looks like today’s post is a happy one--you're damn right I’m ready for success.


Tomorrow:  What Caused your Marriage to Fail?