In recent days I've felt like my brain dumps were becoming a dumping ground for complaints instead of a daily summary. To remedy this, I've decided to rename the blog "Lessons Learned." I'll still provide an account of my day through a quick summary, but will spend the bulk of the words writing about lessons I learned. I'm hopeful you'll shared lessons you learned yesterday in the comments section. This will increase the learning, and help us all become better equipped to handle life.
• Max and I got our second haircut since we've been in Texas. After being disappointed that I let last week's barber talk me into keeping my hair higher, I got it cut low today how I like it (how I'd do it myself if I could find my clippers in the storage unit)!
• The barber shop had the typical black barber shop flavor except for one thing: the guys were watching the World Cup, knew the previous scores, and were excited about it. I have never been to a black barber shop and watched soccer.
• After the cut, we got some food, and went to the library. I felt productive for the first time this week because I spent nearly 4 hours working on Marriage Works!
• After the library we grabbed dinner, and I had a great conversation with my man DB. We cooked up a plan to collaborate on a project for Marriage Works! and his company.
1. Stereotypes are limiting and insulting. Okay, so this isn't something I learned today, but rather it was reinforced at the barber shop. It's easy to say that a certain group of people do this or don't do this. At the same time, it's limiting and maybe insulting. It limits me intellectually because I can't think any higher about what's possible for people to do. It's potentially insulting because it says to others that I think they're just a one-trick pony. While generalizing is sometimes necessary, it's always better to know people one-on-one so I can avoid stereotyping them.
2. Grumbling stops me in my tracks. I mentioned earlier that my brain dumps became a dumping ground for complaints. I've been thinking about the Children of Israel's complaints in the wilderness, and how it negatively impacted them. Right after the miracle of the Red Sea parting, the children of Israel began grumbling because things weren't going the way they preferred (see Exodus 16). They complained about God's provision, and everything else. The word "grumble" used in this chapter has multiple definitions, including "to stop, cease." What I got out of this is that whenever I grumble, I'm stopped in my tracks. I can't move. When I grumble, I'm no longer looking ahead for answers nor moving towards them. Instead, I'm paralyzed by pity and complaining. Not good.
3. Creativity breeds hope. Although I was not at a point of hopelessness today, I did feel homesick and a little discouraged this evening. I called a friend, and our conversation turned into an idea for a collaborative project. I've found repeatedly that I cannot be discouraged, down, and distressed while I'm being creative. Creativity calls for hope, life, and wonderment. Creativity calls for asking, "What's the most awesome thing that could happen as a result of doing this?" Creativity is a force that should not be underestimated. Creativity breeds hope.
Please leave a comment below sharing what you learned yesterday!