A Year…Almost

 

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Wild daisies edging our garden.

Between the blue light of the screen and the warmth of the sun peeking through the window, I was drawn to a thought.

I’m so blessed to have been given this gift of life.

It’s been nearly a year since I made an entry on this blog.  A good year.  One decorated by renewal and change; and a much-needed break from the rigors of college.

With its passage came clarity.

 

New Direction

I’ve come to view the path of my life as a string of seasons.

During my season at SUNY Empire State College I found myself faced with a funny dichotomy.  On one hand, studying a business-related field, I was drawn to shaping my goals around my career.  On the other, being a part of the liberal arts community, I was led to believe the value of my education lay in the journey not the outcome.  I always found it difficult to reconcile the two.  Which makes sense if you really think about it, the two paths lead to conflicting definitions of success.

In this season of post-graduation reflection, I’ve came to a revolutionary understanding of myself, my goals, and my aspirations.

I’ve realized that to shape my goals around material things, and the acute characteristics that define the individual seasons of my life is foolish; it’s better to set more intrinsic goals and let the chips fall where they may.  I’ve decided to pursue peace.  True peace.  Lasting peace.  A deep kind of peace that persist through all of life’s hardships, and challenges, and leads to a real sense of contentment and joy within the context of the life God has given me.

 

Framing the Way

In pursuit of this path I’ve set some basic conditions for success.

I’ve decided not to involve myself in other people’s personal affairs.  Which challenges the values of a dawning information society; which, at this early stage in its evolution has yet learned to differentiate between the communal value of knowledge versus the intrusive presence of unsolicited connectedness, nor tolerance for the various stages individuals go through towards personal growth.

I’ve made it my goal to single-mindedly pursue the opportunities presented to me by God; in all spheres of my life, personal, professional and otherwise.

In my professional life this has led me to a much greater interest in managing my portfolio of work over time, and greater discernment regarding the kind of work I’m willing to dedicate life energy to.

In my personal life it’s led me to a better understanding of how to be a better steward of the many blessings God has given me; the warm daily life of my family, the presence of the land that surrounds me, and a welcoming home that shelters me.

Within this construct I’ve learned to exercise a Godly love for others, their condition, my relationship to them, and how to live with integrity.  Leading me to meet them where they are; in terms of their personal fears, anxieties, and needs; but not requiring me to absorb them.

Loving others doesn’t always mean working to alleviate their stress, but it does often mean understanding it and helping them discover a path to a better tomorrow.

 

Moving Forward

I’ve learned the pursuit of peace requires me to be present in my own affairs, committed to the pursuit of opportunities presented to me, and dedicated to an honest walk that is empathetic to the needs of others.  I’ve decided to pursue this path with a full heart, and to rejoice in the growth I experience along the way.

 

With Gratitude,

Stewart Nicholas

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