I just finished Jordan Peterson’s book, 12 Rules for Life. I found it extremely insightful, provoking, even inspirational. He ended the book by writing his thoughts on various problems and people in his life. One of the overarching principles of the book is to tell the truth or at least don’t lie. I began thinking about what I wanted to say to many people whom I care deeply about (including myself). A lot of times we don’t tell people what we need to because perhaps we are afraid it will offend them. So without further ado, I present to you a little truth-telling, things that I think it’s important for those I care about to know.
Forgive your Parents
Anxiety of Others
Find your Life
Seek to find your life in God. Many of us say we believe in God, Christianity and so on, but we don’t have much of an actual relationship with God. When you begin to truly experience his love, that will begin to transform you into an increasingly loving person, the person you know you were made to be.
Life in God isn’t formulaic
Don’t get too hung up on some kind of formula in your relationship with God. Prayer, and Scripture reading are key, but there is also meditation on Scripture, listening for his voice, solitude, silence and being out in nature. Eric Liddell, the Scottish Olympian and missionary, used to feel God’s pleasure when he was running. I feel it when I do jiu-jitsu, when I get to speak, or when I write. Maybe you feel it when you are engaging in something you were called to do.
Work on yourself before society
Work on yourself before you work on society. I haven’t always been the best example of this. But how are we going to change others if we ourselves are not a good example? We can’t go out there on a crusade to change everything in society unless we are living out a better version of what it is we critique.
Narrow your focus
Narrow your focus. If you are interested in lots of stuff, being excellent demands that you hone in and focus on a few of those areas. Personally, I’ve struggled with this. It takes self-knowledge to figure out what we should focus on. Every choice to cultivate one thing means not doing other things. Be willing to make a choice and go for it, even when that closes you off to other possibilities. Further, God will be with you and use you in any number of areas, not just “religious” vocations.
Trust, don’t freak out
Remember to trust the Lord, especially if you are an anxious person. God is probably putting you in places that show you clearly that you have less control than you thought. That’s ok. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge him and he will direct your path” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Now to practice what I preach. Shalom.