Imagine for a moment, a brilliant summer’s day, and you, standing at a busy crossing, the traffic flowing before you.
Then across the way, as if in slow motion, a child slips from her mother’s grasp, and tumbles onto the road, just as a massive 10 ton truck comes roaring in. The driver brakes, swerves, his truck corkscrews across the road towards you and in a moment, you are lying in the gutter, the sticky, hot, red stuff of life gushing out of your neck.
And as you start losing consciousness, you hear a voice: “What have you done with all you have been given?”
And you, you can find no answer.
At the risk of sounding like a doomsday preacher, all fire and brimstone, that day is coming, as sure as you are reading this, though hopefully not quite like I’ve described it .
And that question will hang in the air: “What have you done with your gift of life?”
And while we think about it, we know what we do with our lives:
We fulfill a role: in someone’s office, programming software, accounting, keeping the books, managing processes and people, cooking and caring for the kids, selling stuff to people.
Sure, these are admirable things that we do, adding to the sum total of society.
And yet, there’s a whisper. A whisper of something more….
That whisper has been asphyxiated, overcome by a 1000 advertisements, emails and vacuous textings so that it has become just another message, dropped into the to-do basket in the far corner of our minds. On that basket is the label: “Someday/Never”.
Oftentimes, though, this whisper has been bludgeoned into submission, silence and sanity by the madmen in our minds that keep us running after the urgent trifles of our daily existence.
That whisper, that voice inside us that calls out to us, is like that other voice that died not long ago, the voice that once called out: “Do you want to sell sugared water all your life, or come with me and change the world”.
Because, we, each one of us, has been given a mission, a calling, an ultimate vision, that’s bigger than us, that beckons like a lover and taunts us like the enemy, that challenges us, and oftentimes, frightens us by the immensity of its calling, and because of the enormous work that will be involved in bringing it to fruition.
And that’s why we, you and I, hold back, why we dream small, if we dream at all.
- We dream small because we fear we haven’t the resources.
- We dream small because we don’t want to lose face with society, another wanna-be tall-poppy getting its come-uppance.
- We dream small because we listen to the demons in our mind who sing: “You won’t fail if you don’t try“.
By dreaming small, we have forgotten that it is more important to be resourceful than to have resources.
By dreaming small, we lose face, in the eyes of that one person to whom it really matters the most: in our own eyes – we lose self-esteem, self respect.
By dreaming small, by not trying, we have, indeed, already chosen, made the choice to fail.
And, really, who, among us will be happy to answer at the end of our lives: “I consumed so much, and delivered so little”.
Today, I encourage you, in the silence of this night, to go back into your soul, delve deep down, unearth that tiny whisper, that vision, that life-mission of yours.
Lure it out to the light, trembling, quivering and quavering, feed it, nurture it, grow it. Then take action, and bring it to fruition, yes, against the head-shaking of the doubters, the booing of your detractors, and the evil prayers of your enemies.
Yes, today’s the day! Begin! Create that vision that’s locked inside you into something magnificent, immense, awe-inspiring, and watch yourself grow, in the process, into a powerful, unforgettable you.
And then on that day, when the last drop of life is ready to ebb from our bodies, when that question hangs in the air: What did you do with all that you have been given, we can boldly reply: “I moved a mountain, to change the world”.
Go forth. And shine!
(Life your life, to the full.
Don’t give up on your dreams, whatever age you may be, whatever impediments you may see now.
For you have that greatest of all resources: your human brain, that makes you massively, incredibly resourceful.
Go out and achieve your potential.
And the Force will be with you.