How’s that for a long title??? LOL – I love when I am going to blog about a couple of relatively simple topics and the title ends up being huge! Heck, I’m going to go a little crazy and go in reverse order even. If this post is already starting off the rails I may as well keep it that way.
When I was a kid and would head down to Union Grove to hang out with my grandparents for a week there were certain activities that were just a given. One of my favorite groups of memories include eating butter pecan ice cream on the deck while listening to the Brewers game. Quite often when I experience even just one of those ingredients I think back to those awesome times with my grandparents. Talk about memories that I’ll treasure forever.
Tonight Becky was going to run to the grocery store quick and asked if I wanted anything. Gavin was going with to pick up ice cream for himself. When those two thoughts collided I immediately thought of Grandma and Grandpa and asked Becky to pick up butter pecan ice cream. We ate it on the deck just because we could. I smiled just like I did so many times with my grandparents before.
Last night I got caught up on the past couple of sermons from our church as I’ve been out of town the past two weekends. One of Father Dodge’s sermons was focused on fear. He shared a very interesting story from CS Lewis in which two devils are talking with each other and one says, “keep them afraid so they don’t think of God.” This was the first time I’d heard the quote and it really hit home. Over the past 24 hours that thought has been fermenting and bubbling in my head. More on that in a minute.
This afternoon our teams got together to review our most recent chapter of Mindset by Carolyn Dweck. The concept was focused a lot on when we are in a growth (abundance) mindset versus a fixed (limited) mindset. In a growth mindset we see limitless opportunity and see failure as learning. With a fixed mindset we see only the path directly in front of us and see failures as proof of our low personal value.
What hit me today is how closely fear is related to a fixed mindset. When I think of the CS Lewis quote it makes me think of how fear shifts us into a fixed mindset if we are not diligent. When we are afraid we tend to hold on very tightly to what we have (see the recent toilet paper shortage as evidence). When we are happy and confident we’re more apt to share and help others.
As these thoughts combined I looked at it from both the mindset of instead of fear hold on to The Big Dude Upstairs and He will provide. If we choose fear we become selfish and live a fixed mindset. Look to the positive and be thankful instead of being afraid. When in a stressful moment / situation choose the way of the optimist and find how you can grow through the situation. If we choose fear instead in that moment we will miss opportunities to grow and hold on to what we already have – in the darkness.
The more and more these two thoughts swirled in my brain the more and more I thought about our current societal challenges. How many of our current challenges have come from fear? How many could be solved with love instead?
And then I caught myself thinking… “Hmm… I’m pretty sure I’ve heard this before.” All night I’ve been trying to recall what quote summarized my thought so clearly. It’s been driving me bonkers because it was so much more clear and concise than my stumbling words.
And then it hit me…
Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”– Master Yoda
And there it is, the little green wise dude hits another home run! For reals, I couldn’t have put it any more perfectly.
Quick bonus, one of my other favorite Yoda quotes:
We are what they grow beyond. That is the true burden of all masters.– Master Yoda