Some Assembly Required
By Rev. Glen Eagle
By the time you read this article, the holidays will be over. Some things will remain, some won’t. Among those that don’t remain are the batteries that did not come with the gift in the first place, because you had to buy them at the corner store and, as a result, they only lasted a few hours. All because of those dreaded three words at the gift-giving time of year: “Some assembly required.” Consider that this statement could be applied without dread throughout the year.
The god Janus, in ancient Rome, was the god of passages. He often sat midway in a door or gate, looking both directions. This two-faced god was not an indication of Roman awareness of bipolar disorder. Rather, he symbolized that we look forward to new beginnings but also bring with us the experiences, and baggage, of the past. Those experiences are the building blocks of the assembly that is required.
When dealing with our baggage, we need to know that, first, it is okay to question. We have physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental accumulations. As we have grown, we have discovered that not all still apply or are useful, but we are afraid to part with them. Sometimes we are afraid because parting with issues leaves us with empty bags, and it’s scary to search for what is truly ours. Sometimes we have been ingrained with certain restrictions by society or individuals that have kept us limited. Science, religion, education, culture, parenting, and even friends, have all contributed to the luggage we carry. Some good and some bad.
It is also okay to doubt. It is okay to realize that others have not lived your life. It’s your life, not theirs. It’s fascinating at weddings to watch and see who is trying to control the situation, other than the bride and groom. I always tell them, “It’s your wedding. Do what you want.” Same with life.
Some toys, like the old model planes, come with instructions, and while you assemble them, they have your attention. However, once they are assembled, you put them on a shelf and occasionally view them. Some toys have endless possibilities. They are the ones that can be reassembled in many different ways. They are the ones that keep your attention. The more you reassemble your life, the more fascinating it becomes.
Look ahead at the new year as an opportunity. If there is baggage that is holding you back, let it go. Look back at it and watch it disappear in the mists of time. Then turn your head toward the newness and discover who you are and who you can be.
Some assembly is still required.
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