Winston Churchill said, “Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.”
I believe that in everyone’s life, there comes an opportunity to go in the direction of truth. My opportunity came a couple of months after the birth of my second child. What I naively thought would be a “harmonious, we are a real family now, I have a purpose because I am a Mom” time in my life – quickly turned into a “who am I? why do I watch T.V. all day? my only sense of accomplishment is a clean kitchen – oh, there’s the mailman, maybe my decorating magazine came – I know this isn’t me, but who am I anyway?” time in my life.
So…I got a job. Not for the money, but to feel like a real person again. I got a job waitressing to prove to myself that I was still a person, still had a brain and could still be good at something. And for a time it worked, but it didn’t take long before I had proven it to myself. Knowing my children needed me and wreaking havoc on my husband’s work schedule and my new baby’s nursing schedule I once again found myself at a crossroads.
One day contemplating all these thoughts I was insignificantly sitting in my room in front of a blank computer screen waiting for it to come on when the thought entered my mind, “There IS more to life, but you have to go find it.” At first I was ready to hurry off as if nothing had happened, but gratefully I gave it a second thought. My second thought was, “O.K. fine, I’ll try to find it.” Knowing this would require action and not knowing where to start I picked up the phone and called the strangest person I knew, my sister Delona. Our conversation went like this, “Delona, it’s Cristy. Is there more to life?” “Yes,” she said. “O.K., I’ll call you back,” I told her. Did she really know something that I didn’t? Her confident answer told me she did.
This was the beginning of my journey. So, what has my journey looked like? Much different than my sister’s. But what our journey and others’ have in common is the same thing I felt that day. It was and still is, “O.K., I’ll try to find it.”
You may still be wondering what “It” is. It is truth. Is it hard to find? Sometimes. Sometimes it takes turning off the tapes of your parents voice in your head. Sometimes it takes the commitment to stay up a little longer or wake up a little earlier to read something you know you need. Sometimes after you put the effort into thought, it will just hit you. But always it takes the commitment to search with an openness and a desire to find it. The search for truth is an education.
The old adage, “And the truth shall set you free,” is true. It can free you from yourself, from the influence of your past, from your apathy, from a nonproductive or destructive future and from an insignificant life.
If you are open enough to readjust you will find it. Don’t readjust to others, readjust to the truth. Horace Mann said, “If a man seeks for greatness, let him forget greatness and ask for truth, and he will find both.”
If you are one who is more practical and wants to know what it looks like for me, here are some visible changes: I only occasionally worship the almighty T.V., I try to exercise daily, I now am conscious of what I eat, I hold my tongue more, yell less, spend ANY extra money on books, teach myself and my children a quote-of-the-week, religiously hold family prayer and created a family motto that we say and aspire to. It is, “To help me live up to the Henshaw Family Name I will: Seek for Truth and Knowledge, Choose Growth over Comfort, Believe I Can Make a Difference, and Show Unconditional Love.
These practical, everyday applications of truth came one at a time and are constantly being added to, readjusted and taken away. If the target is truth, you change and adjust according to it. Stop trying to deceive yourself and stop living an unfulfilled life.
Some would say that not that much has changed in my life. I am sitting here, in my pajamas, typing this while child number three is taking a nap. Our house is no larger; in fact, it’s smaller and we’re driving the same cars. By our society’s standards not a lot of progression has happened in my life. Screw society’s standards – I’ll take truth any day.
Know this: you are divine and you have a purpose. The ONLY road to that divine purpose is truth.
So, if you have insignificantly stumbled across this and something inside you is asking, “Is there more to life?” you have a choice; to either hurry off as if nothing has happened or to ask yourself, “What next?”