Food for Thought
by Leigh Currey Merrifield, Editor
Where are you right now? Are you experiencing a “peak” or a “valley”? If you’re having a “peak” day, then things are going well for you and you have no real major problems. Good for you! On the flip side, you may find yourself in a “valley” where nothing seems to be going as you’d like and you’re just waiting for the next shoe to fall.
Don’t think that you’re the only one to have peaks and valleys because you’re not. In fact, that is just the way life is supposed to be! If you are expecting perfection throughout your life, you’re in for a rude awakening.
Here is what life will bring your way: there will be sunny days and there will be cloudy days. What we need to remember is that old saying that “Every cloud has a silver lining”. Even when a cloudy sky seems to be blocking the sun, if you look closely around the edges of a cloud, you may notice that the sun is still there behind that cloud; it is just for the moment being obstructed. The cloud will pass and the sun will be visible once again. And so it is with life.
If you’re feeling down in a valley right now, perhaps it is a financial issue … or a relationship issue … or a health issue … or a work issue … or perhaps a combination of several of these. While problems may sometimes make you feel like you’ve sunken to the depths, don’t lose sight of the fact that life is full of changeability. Don’t succumb to the circumstances and give up hope or lose faith. Sometimes, even in the valleys, we can learn something that may help us prepare for the peak that is yet to come!
A gentleman driving in upstate New York once related that, as always, while driving through this particular area, he was captivated by the beauty of the rolling hills and majestic peaks – so much so that it was rather difficult to concentrate on the road. What he also noticed was that the sun did not discriminate between the peaks and the valleys. At times the valleys were aglow in sunlight while the peaks were bathed in shadow; and at times the reverse was true. You see, sometimes even in the valleys, there is sunshine; sometimes that is where we “see the light”!
Deep in a valley, we may discover that we have limitations or that we can’t solve everything alone. We may realize and actually feel relief that it is okay to ask for help. Or we may discover that we can’t always fix everything, or maybe things aren’t as broken as we thought!
Those who live in the South often wish they could have a respite from the heat and enjoy the beauty of the winter season. Then, many who experience winter often wish for a perpetual summer! Perhaps it is because of the chill of winter that we appreciate summer’s warmth so much! And perhaps it is our time in the valley that makes us aspire to reach the peaks. ????
A wise old codger who lived on a peak once said that even he had to go down into the valley for provisions once in a while. The valley was his classroom where lessons from his mistakes were learned, and if put to good use, they would prepare him to return to the peak again. Today’s bad times may help create tomorrow’s better times.
Here is some good ‘food for thought’ …. Without setbacks and hard times, the reward at the end of a journey wouldn’t be quite as sweet. Enjoy the “up” times and work through the “down” times and let this process remind us that life is about the trip – not the destination.
Remind yourself that stormy seas will calm and the sun will shine again! Having both the storms as well as the sunshine is a part of life’s journey.
This week’s dessert: “Life is supposed to be a series of peaks and valleys. The secret is to keep the valleys from becoming a Grand Canyon.” ~ Bernard Williams