Monday, September 14, 2020

Getting Where You Want to Go


A funny story has it that, late one night, a party-goer decided it would be best to walk home. He found a shortcut through a poorly lit cemetery and, in the darkness, stumbled into an open and particularly deep grave.

He tried to climb out but the walls were too slippery. Again and again he fell back into the grave. Finally, in exhaustion, he settled in a corner to wait for sunlight.

A little while later another man cutting through the cemetery fell victim to the same grave. He, too, tried desperately to climb and claw his way out, and he was equally unsuccessful.

As he was about to give up in hopeless resignation, he heard a voice from the darkness of his pit: “You’ll never get out of here.” 

He did.

When he first fell into the hole he may have wanted to get out, but after he heard the voice he suddenly HAD to get out. In fact, there was probably nothing more important in his life at that moment than escaping whatever shared the grave with him.

It’s said that every day in Africa, a gazelle wakes up and knows it must outrun the fastest lion to live. And every day in Africa, a lion also wakes up and knows it must outrun the slowest gazelle to live. One could say that, either way, you better wake up running. 

However, one could also say that the difference between whether a gazelle lives or a lion eats depends upon desire. A well-fed lion is likely never to catch a gazelle running for its life, and a daydreaming gazelle might become lunch for any determined lion.

I am learning that the best motivation, whether we want to accomplish a task, go back to school, start something new or kick a habit, usually comes from a desire deep within. To be successful, we must want to do it. Others may certainly help to encourage or to “pump us up,” but, in the end, we will usually get wherever we want to go only if we truly want to go there.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe put it better than I ever could. He said, “Love and desire are the spirit’s wings to great deeds.” Love and desire. They will get you where you want to go.

--Steve Goodier

Image: flickr.com/Mark


No comments: