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Shot Of The Day

Finding Heaven

Dead at 40, Buried at 85

I heard a great sermon that described most of humanity as dead at 40 and buried at 85. A world where we strive so diligently for comfort and resist so fervently suffering that we finally get what we’ve reached for — a state of no resistance. And in our state of no resistance, we end up walking out a repetitive pattern and practice that looks much like the person next door and the person next door to him and the person next door to her. Until finally, we’re not clinically dead, but we may as well be. Only a formal burial separates us from those already gone. Because real living means friction and struggle and challenge. Growth means change. People who reach the finish line are rare. People who reach the finish line and are still running are even more rare. Think about the top of just about anything. The top of the ski slope. The top of the summit. The top of the European tower with hundreds of steps and no elevator. It’s different up there. It sounds different at the top. No voices. No traffic. It feels different. No lines. No waiting. No interference. It smells different. No exhaust. No fumes. Crisp. Clean. Pristine. It is different. No competition. No distractions. Think about the top of just about anything. The top is different because there just aren’t very many people there. Most give up, or worse, never attempt it because they may fail. Don’t fight for it. Think the journey isn’t worth the struggle. We justify our place in the middle with everybody else in a million different ways. But deep in our hearts, we know. We know that the higher place is where it’s at. And the struggle is worth it. Let’s rest when we’re dead. For now, let’s climb. (IMAGE: Mauna Kea, Hawaii, 9,000 feet with my boys).

Posted: 21 April 2008