“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.   Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.”                     Goethe, 1785

When we are striving to live a good life despite chronic illness, we can become so focused on that illness and its remedies until we miss some important aspects of our lives.  You have a purpose in life.  You have passions and dreams.  That can be your primary focus.

As I wrote in a previous post about learning our life’s lessons through joy instead of through suffering, you can learn through getting in touch with all that is Right with you, instead of focusing on all that is wrong, and then pursuing your passion.  When you get in touch with your passion, commit yourself to it.  Yes, you can think of all the reasons why it might not work out, and indeed it might not on your first through fourth tries; but stay committed to your passion.

There are infinite examples of people who kept meeting resistance in fulfilling their passions, but none-the-less persisted; then suddenly vast amounts of good fortune came their way: Meeting just the right people; being in just the right place at the right time; social and economic trends prevailing in their favor, etc.  Being a writer, one such recent example which comes to my mind is a very famous author.  She was a newly divorced single mother of an infant.  She was grieving the loss of her mother.  She had a college degree but had a very low-paying humble job, and spent every spare minute crafting a children’s book that came to her in whole during a long delay in her train commute.  She finally finished it, while barely able to afford food, and was rejected by a dozen publishers who scoffed at her work.  Janet did not give up.  She finally met someone who believed in her work and together they found a publisher who was willing to take a chance on her, as long as she changed her name from Janet to “J.K.” Rowling.  Multiple millions of book sales and numerous movie deals later, she is a household name; and the only reason she is not on the list of wealthiest women in the world is because so much of her fortune has gone to help the less fortunate of the world.

I have recently been personally inspired by this quote on the power of committment from William H. Murray: “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.  Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, the providence moves too.  A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings, and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way.”

It is not just “having a dream,” or saying that you will take a chance and “see if it works out.”  It is saying that “no matter what” I Am doing this!  Then, providence can be unleashed in your favor.  You don’t have to work out all the details first.  The right people, the right timing, and the right material assistance will come when you are truly committed to your passion.

Christopher Knippers, Ph.D.                                                  May 24, 2017

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