Life is hard. Suffering, inevitable. All of us will lose loved ones, will experience heartache, encounter malevolence, and face our own mortality. These basic tenets of life, coupled with both familiar and unfamiliar threats of corruption and chaos, are enough to make us question the reasoning behind our existence. Such doubts can send us plummeting into despair and poison our souls until we perceive life through a lens of bitterness, cynicism, and resentment. However, there are moments which allow us to shed the veil of negativity, reminding us that life is not only about the suffering we endure, but a gift worthy of celebration.
My sister had her first baby last week. Though I could not be there for the birth, nor will I meet the little guy anytime soon (damn COVID), my perspective made a sudden change when I learned of his arrival. The world and all its problems—including my selfish wants and the petty squabbles, spites and politics amongst friends, family, and neighbors—were all forgotten in an instant. For an incredibly brief moment, everything felt right. New life revealed a beauty unknown to me.
It took a few days of reflection until I realized why this child’s birth impacted me the way that it did, having paused my mental strife. I had been there when my four younger siblings were born and was around to meet countless other newborns, but I was young and couldn’t quite grasp the miracle of childbirth. This time was a helluva lot different. The love I have for my sister was a contributor, but there was another driving force behind my experience.
Late in the night over the following weekend, I discovered the gift of life lies in its potential. Learning this truth brought about a sense of hope I hadn’t felt in a very long time.
Before life is corrupted, it is malleable, capable of doing great things. Potential in children is untainted and limitless. The possibilities are endless and the kid could grow up to be anything or anyone. Sure, I could be pessimistic and say the cold cruel world will eat him up, but maybe the opposite will happen. Instead of the world shaping him and breaking him down, maybe he’ll shape it, influencing it to become a better one.
We had, and still have, the same potential inside all of us. Somewhere along the way it was polluted by external forces, causing us to give up on ourselves and on hope. But it is still there, compelling us to pursue something greater with our lives, to be molders of the world and not the molded. While newborn clay is easier to sculpt because it has not yet hardened, it is never too late to soften our casing and tap into the plethora of new possibilities lying beneath.
The gift of life lies within our potential and the hope it brings.
Before You Go!
In what other ways is life a gift? What can you use your potential for? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the Comments Section below!
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You’ve Heard God’s Side of the Story. Time to Hear Mine!