Let Him Be

Near the end of the movie Inception, there is a powerful dialogue between Cobb and Mal. Cobb is trying to explain to his wife Mal (which is not really his wife, but rather his projection of her that keeps coming back in his dreams) … anyways he is trying to explain to her that she is not real and that she is merely a projection of his.

He goes on to say that there is no way he could possibly imagine her “in all of her perfection, in all of her imperfection…” he could not imagine her “fully.”

She would never again in this life be simply, wholly, purely…Mal.

He realized that he could not stay in his dreams with the projection of her because a she was not truly there. Part of her was missing. The part that made her … well, her.

At that moment in the film, I nearly lost it.

Because sometimes I do this with others. In real life. I want others to be who I want them to be, rather than just letting them be who they are and and helping them become who it is that they long to become.

When I try to force people to live under my projection of them, I paralyze them (to a degree) in my mind and in reality …mainly I paralyze my ability to truly invest in them…at the purest level. When I do this, I put myself above them, I am their superior.

When I let people be who they are and enable their development, I instill value and dignity in them. I express to them that who they are is incredible. I help them understand that God has created them beautifully. When I do this, I put myself below them. I express that I am here to serve them. I am saying “We are all in this together.”

Also, I sometimes do this with God. At times, I want God to be a projection of mine. I want Him to do what I want…to come through in the way I’d like…to be who I want Him to be…

But the moment God starts doing this, he ceases to be God.

Because God is better at being God than I could ever project or imagine.

I need to let him be who He is in all of His perfection…purely. To come through in the way He sees best.

Finally, I do this with myself. I use a projection I have of myself (not good enough, never going to make it, not as amazing as others, etc.) against myself as proof that I can’t do something even if I try — so why try? Why go through the process of unnecessary humiliation risking at something I know I can’t do anyway?

What if my projection about myself is wrong? What is I am good enough, am going to make it, am as equally amazing as others, etc.? Then what? Then I’d have to give up my complaint. Then I would be responsible for risking and going for it. And perhaps, in the hard work, the success, the failure, the despair, all of it – in all of that I would find myself, and help others do the same?

What if?

The two options are clear.

The world of projections or the world of humanity.

The world of limitation or the world of possibility.

The world of being judgmental or the world of being curious.

What if?

Then, I could let others be them. God could be God.

And I could be me. Purely, truly, wholly, me.

You are not Crazy

Have you ever had moments when you feel crazy.

I know I have.

Moments when you feel like you are experiencing the world in such a weird way and perhaps in a weird way that is much different than other people and then you wonder…is something wrong with me? Am I out there? Am I nuts?

You are not crazy.

The world is occurring to you in a particular way. It is showing up for you in the way that it is.

AND – the way that it is showing up to you is separate from you.

For example: as you are aware of – all day long, you are making judgments or assessments of the world around you. This is completely normal and part of being human.

Now, let’s say you have judgments of another person. The person is occurring to you in a certain way and you have thoughts about that.

You are separate from those thoughts. The thoughts aren’t you.

And this is why you aren’t crazy.

We all have crazy thoughts at times and that is normal as well.

We just need to make sure that we check in with our thoughts with people we trust.

And remember to breathe. Your not crazy. You’re human.

Complaints and Fantasy

When we complain, we are revealing that we are choosing to live in a fantasy world.

Our complaints reveal our longing for the world to be different.

Yet, rather than create the new world we say we want, we use that energy to complain – getting us further stuck in the world we are complaining about.

Is there a greater fantasy?

What do you choose with your thoughts?

Have you ever had moments in life where you sensed your thoughts sliding towards despair or fear/wonderment of what is next?

Maybe you heard bad news – you get let go from a job, your significant other breaks up with you, you didn’t get into the college you wanted, you didn’t get the job you wanted,

Maybe you are at a threshold in life – you are choosing to resign from a job to pursue your dreams, you are graduating college and wondering what to choose next, you are choosing the road less traveled, you are about to ask a girl out or perhaps propose.

I find these to be the most crucial of moments in my life.

At times, during these transitions or moments, my thoughts can seemingly run away with my sanity; my fear washing over me.

At other times, I choose to stand strong. I choose to let my courage overcome my fear. I let my insanity run wild (who wants to be sane, really?). I let my belief in the future provision outweigh my doubts that God will come through.

In those moments, what will you choose to do with your thoughts?

What’s the point of Risk?

What difference do you want your risk(s) to make?

In your life?

In the lives of others?

What movement will be ignited because you chose to risk?

What if you got hell bent on starting a revolution with one risk.

I’m not talking about becoming the next Steve Jobs (although that would be cool).

I’m talking about starting a movement where people in neighborhoods start all hanging out again because you simply brought everyone on your block some cookies or banana bread and invited them over for bbq featuring only organic, grass fed, cage free, fair trade, shade grown, gluten free, and sugar free vegetables from your garden.

Or start a movement that ends bullying because you stand up for kids in your school who are getting picked on.

Or start a movement caring about the janitors at your school or place of work by putting on an appreciation celebration for all that they do. Just make sure cake is involved. Or cupcakes from Sprinkles would be cool too.

What revolution will you commit to today?

Soccer balls and unexpected smiles

In Sudan in 2009, I stumbled upon the unexpected.

At the “hotel” where we stayed, there were guys who worked there performing various tasks.

In the first 5 days there, I never saw them smile.

Not even once.

But on the 6th day, I overheard them laughing.

When I went to Sudan, I brought as many soccer balls as possible.


The guys had began playing “keep away” in a circle. One guy was in the middle trying to get the ball from the other guys passing the ball around the circle.

And they were roaring with laughter.

I never knew I had a dream of bringing laughter to men working at a hotel in Sudan.

What soccer balls are you bringing with you today?

I don’t feel like it

Quite often, when talking with people about why they didn’t to something that they knew they should have, I hear the response “I just didn’t feel like it.”

And I know that I have personally “felt” that way before as well.

The crazy thing is this: if we only do what we “feel” like or don’t “feel” like, well then, we will just give in to our feelings.

And our feelings don’t always take us in the direction of what we truly want in life.

So what can we rely on, then, if we can’t always go with our feelings?

What can we depend on to pull us towards the future we long for?

The only thing that I have found to be truly resourceful is to rely on the vision we have for the future. To know what that future is and constantly evaluate if we are getting to that vision. Ask others for feedback to see if are getting there.

If you don’t know your vision – where you are committed to being in the future, then you will have no idea if you are on the right path – and thus more likely to be swayed by your feelings.

If you are trusting your feelings, it indicates that your vision is not clear.

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