Some weeks ago, I was going back home with my family in an Uber and saw this amazing sight that I just had to take a photo of. So I did. And in the next few days, looking at the photo, a thought started to grow in my mind that I thought would be good to share along with the photo.
Cauliflower stack of mathematical beauty!
Well, as you’re looking (gawking?) at it, you’ve got to remember that this is Delhi, a city in which things teeter on the edge of chaos all the time. A city of extremes; violent death, amazing beauty, abrasive hostility and unexpected kindness. A city that throws you off every now and then, a bit like, as it says in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, forgetfully changing from 4th gear to 1st while you’re cruising along at a hundred and twenty.
How could such order appear in the midst of the well-known chaos embodied in the popular Delhi concept of jugaad (roughly paraphrasing to mean get it done anyhow)???
My mind boggled for a bit, following the example of my eyes. Then the questions started, and with the ensuing dialogue, light began to dawn.
What’s the reason for the way they’ve stacked it?
Well, I guess it’s because they want to get as many as possible to the market.
So, why stack it in that particular way?
Umm…someone obviously knew the properties of interlocking shapes and their benefits. Also, they knew the roads were bad, so they ensured that the stack wouldn’t fall by interlocking the cauliflowers.
So, what was their bottomline?
Profit. They made sure they were getting the maximum value for money in the entire enterprise.
Put your treasure where there is no moth, rust or thieves. What are you doing to make sure that the most important things for you are protected from decay, destruction and theft?
That stopped me like a wall! I was taken aback. I’ve been well-known for moaning and groaning. Of being burdened under the stresses of life. But what WAS I doing to protect the most important things for me? What WERE the most important things for me?
One of the things I just love about God is His gentleness when we are willing to listen. He doesn’t seem to load us with a 15 point list of what needs to change. He draws our attention to one or two root things and then works over time with them. Some months before I had felt the need to spend time regaining the habit of reflection and moving away from a lot of doing, and the blog really helped kickstart that. However, in the last couple of months I’ve been feeling the need to pull back and listen to what God is saying about things, instead of being always in practical mode and trying to do something.
Looking at the stack of cauliflowers, I realised that with the regain of a family time of reading and praying together, I needed to prioritize keeping certain days ’empty’ for reflection and just spending time alone with God undisturbed. It was time to invest in those things, whatever they may be, that would cause the kingdom of God to grow in and through me, and to create ‘interlocking’ habits that were feeding this.
Strangely enough, one thing that I’m in the process of working out is the act of going to sleep early. Investing in actually doing that seems to make an enormous, almost disproportionate difference to my day and myself as a person. Protecting our family sleep time successfully over three weeks, gave us the taste of significant difference before we allowed ourselves to slip back. Continuing to invest in and work this out has been coming back to mind, and I’m in the process of biting the bullet and getting back into the discipline. Investing in this seems to have a ramifying effect in my life that creates clarity, the ability to achieve my goals, and prevents loss of time and energy.
Not quite what I was thinking about!
Over the last few days, I was reading several articles by Sid Savara whom I had quoted in my previous post Either You Run the Day…Or the Day Runs You, and something he wrote in his excellent article The 7 Reasons Good People Still Fail really caught my attention. Here it is down below –
But this last one, this “bonus” reason is truly a devastating reason people fail
And if you can’t overcome it, you will never get what you want out of life.
Here it is….
Reason #8: They Never Change
Nobody is perfect.
I get that.
We all make mistakes in life.
The question is this –
When you have the opportunity to change your life, will you:
Take that chance to change it?
Will you simply carry on making the same mistakes?
The truth is, not changing is the only reason people actually fail.
This really struck me because it was so very simple…and so TRUE! My inability is usually due to my reluctance to change or lack of desire to change, or lack of persistence in changing. It’s not because God is too small, but the fact that I’m too big…for my boots. It’s the creepy, self-justifying, self-seeking, contentiously arguing self-pride.
So, am I feeding what is important for me? What am I doing that will continue to feed the process of change? Will I have stories of change to share, or at the end of this year, will my stories be the same predictable ones? Where and how am I storing up treasure for myself?
My answer is less important than what time and circumstance will show.