“Now if we are children, then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”
St. Paul, Romans 8:17
“The ultimate authority must always rest with the individual's own reason and critical analysis.”
“The wisest have the most authority.”
Today, on Christmas Day, the day that celebrates the birth of Christ the King, I was shocked to learn that I am also a king. In fact, I’m a king of the world.
How did this happen? It started with today, with Christmas Day and it led to some questions.
Today has been peaceful so far. I got some nice presents and I’ve done some writing. I’m grateful that today has been largely peaceful. This has been in contrast to the last few days of shopping, crowds and parking lots. Sometimes when I watch as an observer (and as a participant) I feel horrified. The commercialization and objectification of Christmas is nothing new. Still, as I get older, it affects me more.
I don’t enjoy the stress. I don’t enjoy worrying if others will like what I got them. It really is the thought that counts, but we don’t think about that. I’m glad for what Christmas does for the economy, but this year, I got a handful of presents and I’m happy with each of them. As I get older, my tastes simplify. I like books, gift cards, flavored coffee and sweaters. Most of all, and this is what matters the most, I want to feel good throughout the day. Gifts can help make that happen but I get peace and joy from writing, from being in my Purpose or from helping someone get a job. I am happy when those I love are happy.
But what if they aren’t happy? What if someone doesn’t like his or her gifts? What if there are other issues that are clouding the joy of Christmas for those I love? I think the best I can do is love them, pray for them, listen to them and set an example for them. I do the last by being here, doing my writing. Writing and being in my Purpose keeps me focused and peaceful. I’m not the center of the universe and it’s not all about me, but the choices I make either create something better or something worse. Or I have no effect at all. Having no effect at all in this world or with the ones I love is the same as having a negative effect. I choose the first. I want my choices, my actions, my attitudes, my thoughts and my words to make life better.
In fact, I want to pretend that I am the center of the universe and that the universe does as well or as poorly as I’m doing. I want to pretend that it is all about me and that I determine the course of the world and the course of destiny for others.
So here are the questions: What if it really were up to me? What if I were a king of the world? Then I would have to consider the following questions:
· How would I behave?
· How would I speak?
· What thoughts would I allow and/or act upon?
· How would I treat others?
· Would I always be true to my word?
· How would I treat animals or the planet?
· What things would I say or not say?
· What example would I want to set?
· How would I do my job?
· Would I take better care of myself?
· How would I use my time?
· Is there anything in my life I would change now?
Here’s the thing: It really is all about me. I determine the course of the world. So does everyone else. We are not helpless. We are not buffeted by the winds of fate or chance. And even if we are, each man and woman has the ability to choose his or her attitude. It is all about me. And it’s up to me whether or not that’s a good thing. It’s up to me to Get Started and to Keep Going. It’s up to me to do my best. It’s not up to anyone else. It never was.