Go to any book store and you will find that one of the largest sections is Self-help / Personal Development. Hundreds of books on making yourself a “better you”. The consistent mantra goes something like this: Change what you do and you will become thinner, better looking, more fulfilled or financially successful. Sounds great! Sign me up. I’m ready to try harder.
Are you and I the persons others see when things are going well in our lives? Yes.
But are you and I the persons others see when things are not going well, when stress is running rampant or when we are drifting spiritually, or feeling “up against the wall”? YES!
One of my favorite places in the world is sitting next to any fire…fire places, fire pits, bonfires. I’m sitting in front of a fire alone this very moment spending some time reflecting on how God has brought me through some pain and suffering in my life. Mine has been miniscule compared to many others but it is mine nonetheless…and it’s the most important parts of my God Story. That’s true of you, too, whether you have chosen to lean into that truth or not in your life.
Maybe you’ve heard of a coach who is one of my heroes – John Wooden. Wooden made records as the coach of the UCLA men’s basketball team. In an eleven year span, they won nine (9!!!) national championships!. This record will likely never be broken. People always wondered what it was that set Wooden apart.
Happiness comes from the same root word as “happenings”. As long as my happenings are good, I can be happy. Joy is obviously different…in fact, it could be argued, opposite. How does inner peace produce joy in the hardest of things? Is scripture just wacky when it boldly says:
The last time we visited, my “stay tuned” tease was designed to allow you to examine how “Sorry Doesn’t Cut It” has played out in your lives. If you did, I have no doubt you remembered how sorry you have been about something you did or was done to you. It likely wasn’t hard to remember and deeply feel some of those moments again…right?
You are human and you have likely experienced something similar. “Sorry” is the magic word, right? It makes hurts go away. It takes my bad behavior or words and explains them as “just a mistake”. It wishes that these consequences would just go away. This isn’t that big of a deal. It hopes to simply “move on”. But Sorry Doesn’t Cut It!