I read the quote nearly every day. It dangles at the bottom of his emails. Each time I read it, I feel a flush of regret of the inertia in the past and present; the dread of a future where the truth of the quote compounds with interest.
The quote reads: “Every day you don’t do something, it makes it less likely that you will ever do something.”
What gets in the way of the doing something is either a lack of clarity of purpose or a lack of faith. Some may be uncomfortable with the word faith, try courage or confidence … the willingness to take action anyway despite uncertainty or fear.
The only way to make something happen in this world is to be seen and heard. Risk is required. Faith requires conflict with reality and confrontation of fear. Without conflict or fear, faith is not needed. A life lived with faith is implicitly a life lived with conflict. Faith is a verb. It is what we do in the face of the unknown.
To be seen and heard is to be alive. It is to exert yourself upon the world. Hiding in silence is to die (metaphorically). Slowly. Quietly. It is painless except for gnawing mild awareness that convictions are going unanswered and unfought for. Compromise after compromise, the integrity of the soul tears, fiber by fiber until the soul is compromised. Strips of fabric blow in the winds of life. It’s hard to tell what the strips of fabric once made. After being torn down to strips, we’re not quite sure of who or what we are anymore. It’s hard to know what to risk from this place of uncertainty. This erodes clarity of purpose.
Purpose requires faith. Faith requires purpose. One without the other is pointless or impotent.
I’ve taken to dwelling in shadows in the past few years. There’s been a trepidation about being seen and being heard. It’s turned into passivity. This is a problem.
I am sorry for the times I’ve proven the quote true. Phone calls not made. Visits not taken. Ideas left half baked. Work left unfinished. Risks avoided. Opportunities lost.
I know there’s forgiveness. I need the grace to accept it. And the faith and clarity of purpose to do something every day.