Last year was an unusually wet one for California. I often think of the State of California as in a perpetual State of Drought. I remember reading once that a popular triathlon (Wildflower Triathlon) had to be canceled because the lake that was used to swim in had basically dried up. Pictures of sun scorched areas, cactuses, and deserts come to mind. Yet, in February alone, it was estimated that Los Angeles alone wasted over 18 trillion (yes, trillion with a ‘T’) gallons of rainwater. This is basically due to the fact that the infrastructure isn’t capable of storing the rainwater. It all is routed via archaic storm drains that were created decades ago…and it all lands back…into the Pacific Ocean.
The precious water that could provide necessary water to humans, plants and animals…swept away. In fact, 18 trillion gallons of water could provide enough water to last the city of Los Angeles for close to a year. All swept away in a matter of moments.
I wonder, what are we allowing to be swept away? So often in life, valuable moments and lessons descend upon us. We gasp in the circumstance and cry out…
“No! Not me!”
“This is horrible!”
“I can’t go on!”
Yet, embedded in each challenge…is a lesson. A learning opportunity. A principle to be grasped. A lesson to be learned.
I remember once when a significant business challenge punched me in the face. I chose to wallow in my despair. It got to me. I even allowed it to affect my time outside of work. My family suffered the consequences of my stress and anxiety. In the end? It all worked out. All the fretting and fuming and frustration…all for naught. Had I simply stepped back, took a deep breath, and sought the learning…not wasted the opportunity to shine and overcome…I wonder how much different the situation could have turned out.
I’m older now, I’d like to think wiser as well, but I often find myself wasting in the problems. The Blue Wave, the Pandemic, the riots, the masks, the snow, the cold, the gray. The problems seemingly insurmountable.
I can’t allow my mind to waste any longer. I’m choosing to capture the opportunity. I’m choosing to turn these stumbling blocks into stepping-stones. It’s not easy. It’s easier to sulk in my self-inflicted pity.
I must move on. I mustn’t waste the rain. I mustn’t miss the lesson. What is the learning? What am I being taught? How can I become better through this? How can I capture this moment and make it a memory? Life’s too short. Too precious.
Today, I lower my umbrella and soak up the abundance. Today, I stop telling God how big my problem is, and start telling my problem how big my God is.
I wonder, are there others who will join me? Is your despair too much? Are you wasting time feeling sorry for yourself? Are you ready to seize the day? To capture the opportunity? To learn the lesson?
Let’s do this…
Don’t waste the rain.