“Embrace Challenges” Sub-Pages:
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default. ― J.K. Rowling (via Goodreads)
God Works All Things to the Good
It is commonly in a somewhat cynical sense that men have said, ‘Blessed is he that expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed.’ It was in a wholly happy and enthusiastic sense that Saint Francis said, ‘Blessed is he that expecteth nothing for he shall enjoy everything.’ It was by this deliberate idea of starting from zero, from the dark nothingness of his own deserts, that he did come to enjoy them. – G.K. Chesterton, St. Francis of Assisi
Give Me Neither Poverty Nor Riches
I discovered this phrase in the Liturgy of the Hours it really struck me. Too little money is obviously problematic, but too much money can be a real problem for people too. Naturally, we always want more, but that leaves us continually discontented. My dad used to say that the problem with playing the Lottery is that you might win. I think he was on to something. And that’s not to say that money is evil. The Bible, of course says that the love of money is evil. But money is complicated.
Later this year, I found some interesting reinforcement of the idea that it might be best to be neither rich nor poor, even from a practical standpoint. In his book David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits and the Art of Battling Giants, Malcolm Gladwell investigates the relationship between money and raising children. He sat down with one of the most powerful people in Hollywood, someone who is now incredibly wealthy, but grew up poor and was driven to succeed in order to lift himself out of those circumstances. They talked about the challenges of raising his own children now:
He was sitting in his home office as he said that – a room easily the size of most people’s houses – and then he finally came to the point. He had children that he loved dearly. Like any parent, he wanted to provide for them, to give them more than he had. But he had created a giant contradiction, and he knew it. He was successful because he had learned the long and hard way about the value of money and the meaning of work and the joy and fulfillment that come from making your own way in the world. But because of his success, it would be difficult for his children to learn those same lessons. Children of multimillionaries in Hollywood do not rake the leaves of their neighbors in Beverly Hills. Their fathers do not wave the electricity bill angrily at them if they leave the lights on. They do not sit in a basketball arena behind a pillar and wonder what it would be like to sit courtside. They live courtside. – pg. 47
Trust Your Children with Responsibilities
Believe it or not your kid will be eighteen one day, and although you adore them and love doing for them, you don’t want to keep them dependent upon you until they turn eighteen and then dump them out into the real world cold turkey and wave good-bye; we’re supposed to raise them – to parent them – in a manner that inculcates in them a sense of how to be adult in the world, in age-appropriate ways, beginning in early childhood. – Julie Lythcott-Haims, How to Raise an Adult
Gratitude taken to its limit involves thanking God (or being grateful) even for suffering loss, challenge, setbacks, and difficult people.
For this momentary light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to what is seen but to what is unseen; for what is seen is transitory, but what is unseen is eternal. – 2 Corinthians 4:17-18