One of the more difficult tasks in life is refraining from answering unasked questions. I had been working with a young man for some years and though he sought answers and asked many of the right questions, he was unable (unwilling) to change his actions in one area. On the surface his life appeared well put together: successful provider, caring family man, giving attentive friend, of service to his community, friends, even strangers. His laugh quick and genuine, handshake firm, but he had a secret that in the end cost him nearly everything. I knew of his secret for many years, but had I broached the subject with him, unbidden, our conversation at first blush would have appeared positive but in reality would have marked the end of our relationship. How do I know? Bitter experience.
So, I waited, answering only the questions asked, regularly biting back words, being circumspect to the best of my ability, praying regularly for him and his family, asking in meditation for direction, hopeful for the day when he would step from ship to shore. It took him ten years and the fulfillment of the lesson: the only instrument sharp enough to cut away the excess of self is pain to finally bring his “secret” into the light of day. I’m grateful it only took ten, for most unfortunately never disembark. What this man discovered is that he had the answers he needed all along, having asked the right questions along the way, all that was required was a commitment to follow through and truly do the work, thus transforming theory into action. It has been said “we are only as sick (spiritually) as our secrets” so if there is any area in your life where you are not “walking the way you talk” throw open the shutters and be free of the fear driven life.
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