We recently took a walk in our favorite local park. We were saddened to see that the BIG oak tree had fallen and lay cut in pieces to be taken away. This tree, by our semi-scientific calculations, was over 250 years old. What we loved about this tree is it stood so majestically at the bottom a hill flanked by benches for storytelling time, waving its beautiful branches in the wind. But, as we investigated a bit, the core of the tree was rotted away. Hmmm, without the tree being down and cut, we would not have seen the rotted inside. There were probably signs previous to it falling, like branches falling off more frequently, maybe some insects running up and down its bark, or a large number of acorns being produced in the last year….which we learned from a tree “guy” is a sign that the tree is in distress. Whatever the little signs might have been we missed them and were surprised to find this majestic oak tree down.
What does this have to do with anything but an old oak tree falling? I think it has a lot of similarities to how we are at times. We put on a good front when inside we are crying out for something. Others may look great on the outside but suffer from disease. Or we look great, strong and powerful on the outside but inside we are feeling empty, lonely or depressed. What can be done to prevent our insides from “rotting” away and causing us to fall from the discord inside of us? If we are not feeling well or feeling like something just isn’t right, we can go to a doctor. They have been gifted with wisdom and have access to many tools to look inside to see what might be wrong. When we get a diagnosis, we can then start the treatment to get better, from the inside out! We have friends who recently lost someone special in their life, he ignored signs of something being wrong and finally when the symptoms became debilitating he went to a doctor. “The cancer is too advanced, there is nothing we can do. I’m sorry,” was the diagnosis. How terribly sad for all involved.
I know from my own experience that something was wrong with my body several years ago. That strange numbness and tingling was on my left side and now going to the right side. MRI’s were ordered and when we saw the lesions on my spine and in my brain we knew we were dealing with MS. Treatment with medication, eating well and exercising, I feel healthier than I ever have before. We found the issue and we have made plans to address it. In the next article, we will deal with times when the inside is good, but the outside doesn’t perform or look as good…..another topic completely…stay tuned.
What about those of us who are crying on the inside. Eventually your outside will show what is on the inside. No it won’t Chris, I’ve hidden it for years, you might be thinking. I have to disagree with you. When we fake health, whether that be physical, emotional or spiritual it WILL come out! Maybe we try to cover it up with alcohol, keeping our relationships at surface level, or we have practices of coping we do in private. Whatever we are doing to hide it, cover it up or push it to the back of our mind, it is making us sick – rotting on the inside. What can be done? Plenty! If you are ready to change, heal and live a fuller life! You can visit a counselor who can work with you to discover the root of your inside trouble and help you heal. You can seek out a recovery group that can help you address the issues you are covering up with other things. You can reach out to someone that you trust who can walk with you on this journey of healing from the inside out. The important step is to start!
Okay, you might be saying, Chris I am healthy, I have a good life, but I do sometimes feel like there is more to life, I’m just not sure what or if it’s just silly for me to think that way. I’m not really rotting on the inside, but I do feel like there is something missing. There are some things you too can do! If you are feeling unfulfilled in your job, relationships, marriage, or spiritual life, there are things you can do to help you find the missing piece or pieces. Are you in a job that fits with your values or do you struggle every day as you prepare for going to work with questions or worse – dread? Do the people in your life share your beliefs and values? Are they helping you grow? Have you helped them grow? Are you deepening your understanding of what you believe spiritually? Are you living out what you are learning? Would others be able to acknowledge what you believe by the way you behave? There are things you can do to become healthier on the inside, how you can find those missing pieces and how you can live a more purposeful fulfilled life. Find someone you trust and open up to them about your concerns of feeling empty. Search for guidance from a coworker, leader in your church, family member or friend you trust. You can also receive guidance from a counselor or Life Coach. I would be honored to talk with you about your desired next step or help you discover your next step, simply go to the Speak To Me page and we can connect. Together we can discover, grow and develop your purpose. You will bless yourself and those around you! Whatever you choose to do, I ask you to DO SOMETHING. Your inside and your outside can match, your life can be driven by your purpose and values…..a fulfilled life!
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