July 12, 2014

One Step



 
The Chinese have a saying “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” We have to start somewhere and that somewhere is the beginning. However we live in a world of instant rice, instant coffee, and so much more that manifests itself in minutes. Most people these days do not want a long journey. They want to get the end, and get there in a hurry. Instant gratification. They say that good things come to those who wait, but many people do not want to wait. They have no patience. We don’t want to take one step. We want to take as many steps as quickly as possible. People sometimes have good intentions but don’t follow through. The Appalachian Trail begins on one end in Georgia. Seasoned hikers can tell you about the gear they find in shelters or trail side stores that have been left because the hiker(s) have called it quits after finding out that hiking the trail is not as easy or perhaps as romantic as they thought it would be. A good ethic to live by is if you are going to start something, you should finish it. Yet this ethic is largely ignored. Maybe that is why so many marriages end in divorce. Instead of working at it, the couple throws up their hands and quits without making much of an effort. This is not surprising. We live in a disposable world. The landfills keep growing with all the things we throw away. Instead of mending a shirt or jacket, we throw it in the trash and head over to the shiny shopping mall to buy another one. Who wants an old shirt that has been sewed when the local department store has so many new shirts you can buy, and on credit too. Sometimes, we are still paying for something that has long since ceased to exist. People still are paying off a wedding when a divorce is in the final stages. A thousand miles is a long way to go, and few of us want to make the effort to get there. We look for the easy way out, the shortcut. For things that are truly worth having, there are no shortcuts. You have to roll up your sleeves and get to work.

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