Monday, July 16, 2012

DRIFTWOOD

I love the beach. Walk through our home and you will see evidence of this in every room. Seashells in all shapes and sizes mingle with starfish and driftwood we've collected over the years.

The driftwood pieces intrigue me. I suppose that's why I bother to pick them up in the first place. They have a haunting quality to them. I cannot help but wonder where they came from and how far they traveled. Surely the ocean was brutal to them. These partially decomposed fragments of wood have taken their share of beatings. Over time, they morphed into driftwood.

Sometimes our lives can appear like a piece driftwood. There's an undercurrent of sadness from storms we've lived through. People may judge us without knowing our background. Because they don't know where we've been and the rough waters we've endured, they make judgments based on appearances and their own assumptions. We get categorized as "driftwood", kind of interesting to look at, but lacking any real value or purpose.

But we aren't made of wood. We have choices in the midst of life's storms. The wood goes where the current carries it. We can choose to go with the flow as well, or we can fight the tide. We don't have to drift along and allow circumstances to pummel us and rob us of our value. Afterall, we are designed and put here for a purpose. It's a choice. Drifting may sound innocent enough, but it implies a lack of resistance. When we drift, we let whatever life throws at us sway and mold us. I don't know about you, but this isn't how I want to live. I want to know who I am and what my God-given purposes are with such clarity that I am not swayed. I want to stand strong in my beliefs, my convictions, and my callings.

It's true, driftwood can be beautiful. That, too, is an encouraging thought. Just because we've been through some rough seas doesn't mean we're washed up. Our lives can take on a new beauty and more glorious purpose.

Most, if not all of us, have had seasons of drifting. It's a natural part of the ebb and flow of life. But at some point, we have to learn to stand strong ~ and hold fast ~ or we will just keep drifting. Driftwood may look nice on my mantle, but that doesn't change the fact that it's dead wood. As much as I enjoy the driftwood we've collected over the years, I don't want to be like it ~ interesting to look at, but void of purpose and real life.

"Like the winds of the sea
Are the waves of time,
As we journey along through life,
Tis the set of the soul,
That determines the goal,
And not the calm or the strife."
~Ella Wheeler Wilcox

"It's never too late to be what you might have been."
~George Eliot

"Our background and circumstances may have influenced who we were, but we are responsible for who we become."
~Barbara Geraci 
    

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