Reinvent Your Life Now!  –

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At Blanchisseuse Beach, Trinidad with Wendell Motley

 

There is nothing worse than feeling “Stuck in a rut.”  One of life’s great challenges is for us as human beings to continually “Reinvent” our lives.  For many of us, we prepare ourselves academically and professionally for careers that we can build upon, grow into, and springboard into something totally different.  Yet for many the opposite is the case.

For any number of reasons, we may stumble upon a career, find that it pays the bills, and we in turn build our lives around something we may never thought seriously about doing for a life time.  One fellow described his job as the “Golden Handcuffs.”  He worked for a major airline and told me he hated his job, but the perk that allowed him and his family to fly for virtually free was too good to pass up.  For him, the “Golden Handcuffs” was the perk that enabled him to stomach a job he did not particularly care for.

For other people there may not be any “Golden Handcuffs.”  It may simply be that you are stuck in an unfulfilling, unsatisfying life.  Some people are living in family situations that are chaotic.  For others, home may be boring.  Still for others, you may live with a lying, arrogant, cheater, but it is your life – certainly far from what you ever dreamed, but it is your life, and for some, the thought of starting over is simply overwhelming.  So, we stay, even though we are not happy.

My question that I am tossing in the air for your consideration is this:  How can you reinvent your life?  What are the steps to make life interesting and fun?  Can a person live an interesting, fulfilling, meaningful, fun-filled life and still make enough money to live life the way you want to live?

I do not want to pass myself off as some kind of life-expert, but I will stay this, I am 64 years of age and having the time of my life.  I am a career minister.  I love the ministry-every aspect and phase of it.  I like to visit the sick; pray for the infirmed; bury the dead; marry the lovers; teach the Word of God; create interesting, Spirit-filled, Spirit led programing for the church; engage in a socially relevant Gospel that speaks to real issues for real people seeking real solutions; minister to the unmarried and the married, the young and old; offer counseling to those who desire an ear and helpful voice; and on top of all of that, I still like to preach the Word of God.

Let me share with you my process for personal “Reinvention.”  First, I believe it is important to put oneself totally into your work, whatever that might be.  For me, this is the ministry.  Perhaps for someone else, it may be plumbing, carpentry, electrical or legal work or something else.  When we put ourselves into our work and really focus on being the best that we can be, work will cease to seem like, “Work” and begins to take on a life of its own.

Second, for me, the process of personal reinvention requires the ability to “Helicopter” above your work so I can look down on the work from a sky type view to see something different than the day to day slug fest of getting the job done.  What I have found is that when I can step back long enough and to rise high enough with the view, then I find it easier to dream and imagine something better, more efficient and productive than what currently exists.

Third, for me, personal “Reinvention” happens when the creative juices flow-often because of the “Helicopter” view.  My personal reinvention is happening right now because of a spiritual revival that is taking place within my soul.  Let me share with you some of the ways this is happening.  I am writing almost every day a spiritual blog, which you are reading right now.  The process of taking the time to write and think each day about a spiritual subject is exciting and personally renewable for me.  I literally grow with every paragraph I write.

My spiritual reinvention is also happening by doing dome things that are related to my ministry, but also, other things that may not be directly connected.  For example, I am a “Closet” photographer.  Increasingly, I find myself taking pictures not only of people, but also inanimate objects.  Often, I will write a spiritual blog that takes its genesis from a photo that I found meaningful.  Another way I am reinventing myself is though the discipline of writing books.  I just finished my second book entitled, “An African American Passover Celebration.”  There will be a formal launch of this book near the end of the summer.  I feel really good about this worship liturgy, because I unveiled it two Sundays ago at the Peoples Congregational United Church in Washington, DC to a wonderful, heart-warming reception.

The point of “Reinvention” for me is the ability to rise above my present day ministry to dream, vision and push myself to higher heights of excellence in all that I do and in the process, my life is becoming increasingly more interesting and fun.  Still, another form of my personal “Reinvention” is practicing and playing the harmonica.  43 years ago I aspired to be a musician.  I performed professionally from the ages of 16 to 21.  My musical career was short lived, but I think about aspects of the musical life every day.  After a 43-year break, I have no illusions of doing anything other than playing for fun and humoring my congregation and the musicians in my church.  But, I am having the time of my life.

So, I encourage you today to seek your “Reinvention.”  I challenge you to rise above the temptation to settle for “Golden handcuffs.”  I encourage you to make the most of each day, Strive for the best. Hope for the best and be the best you can be on every level.

Revelation 21: And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.”[1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What “Golden Handcuffs” are holding you back from the life God has planned for you?
  2. What plan can you imagine to “Reinvent” your life?

Prayer:  God, today, I seek your “Reinvention” for my life.  I acknowledge that there have been times when I have settled for less, worked for less and envisioned less than the potential you have set for me.  Create a fire of new energy within my soul.  Push me to push myself to climb new mountains of opportunity, to swim the seas of adversity, and to run the race of life with vigor, meaning and purpose.  Lord, help me today to remember the poor, to lift the faint of spirit and to fight for justice and equality for all.  Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Denise Page Hood

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Re 21:5). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.