Being a child of the USA I have taken on certain attitudes, even when I didn’t realize it. Growing up in the Southwest solidified those attitudes even more.
Attitudes like…”if you want something done right, you’ve got to do it yourself” and “you’ve got to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps”, “he/she’s a self-made man/woman” and “you got yourself into this mess so you better figure out how you’re going to get yourself out”.
Because of these attitudes being ingrained in my heart, I carried all of my burdens on my back and anytime I was confronted with something new, if I could not solve it on my own, it got slung on my back.
Another big deal about many of us South-Westerners is that we are very private people. We keep our sorrows to ourselves, or at least I do. I don’t want anyone to think ill of me or that maybe I can’t handle life on my own.
Have you ever seen a landfill? Well… when we practice this lifestyle, before we know it we are carrying a landfill on our back. That’s what I was doing. How many of us can survive that?
Along my own personal path of life, one day I realized that God does not want me to carry everything on my back. In fact, He really does not want me to carry any heavy loads on my back.
I remember that I was plagued with depilating depression from the time I was about 12 years old and I carried it with me wherever I went. I tried to avoid it, anesthetize it, run away from it. One day I decided to listen to God who was telling me to stop avoiding it and walk through it. It was a huge mountain, but one day I realized that it was no longer a problem that I carried with me. This is not the solution for all depression but it was for the type of depression that I had carried with me for decades.
Isn’t it better to put my hiking boots on and carry a few tools in my hands or in my backpack in this journey that we call life, instead of doing whatever I can to remove the mountain and hide it on my back? That’s the choice that I make now.
Yes, there are times that I return to my old ways and try to hide the mountain by putting it on my back, but soon, God reminds me that I’m not supposed to carry it, so I put it back into perspective and keep climbing.
One foot in front of the other, traveling the path of life. I have met some awesome companions along the way. Some I traveled a little way with them and then they veered down another path towards a different mountain, some I have traveled a long, long way with. I have seen some beautiful views from the mountain tops and have been through some precarious passages along the way. Valleys can be beautiful, awesome, scary, restful. It’s all good, it’s life. The life that God gave me.
That’s the way I view my life now. I journey, up and down along the way. It’s beautiful, an adventure that I would not trade for anything else.