BY: T. Franklin Murphy |May 2015 (edited 2018)
Reaching Beyond and Becoming More
We, like the acorn, have great potential. We, unlike the acorn, are empowered beyond our environments. We can create environments that gives more of the nutrients and protection that we need.
The majestic oak tree, towering above the ground, once existed within the tiny confines of a seed. The acorn carries great potential. In the right environment, the outer shell splits and life emerges. The roots sprout pushing deep into the soil and soon a tender shoot breaks through the ground. Sun, rain, and nutrients nourish the young seedling as it grows strong and tall.
Many potential oak trees will not survive—never achieving full maturation. Some acorns fall on stony ground and never take root; others are dried by the powerful rays of sun, still others are carried off as food, or perish from disease. Like the acorn battling for life, we are also susceptible to environments. Our young lives are fraught with experiences that hamper or encourage development.
Unlike the dependent acorn, we are more empowered, involved in the development or decay; capable of reaching potentials or succumbing to outside influence. We can change our environment. We make choices that increase or decrease the likelihood of achieving our potential. Knowledge, skill and loving support guide us along.
Growth toward potential requires courage to venture into the unknown darkness that lies between where we are and the light of where we want to be. Often, the darkness we must transverse is within. Our faulty thoughts, weakened self-discipline and destructive habits create ominous barriers, foreboding the weary travelers from venturing further. Many patterns of thought that previously provided protection must mature for growth to continue. While defensive thought may make life more palatable, smoothing emotions, the misdirected approaches inhibit growth, interfering with relationships and careers.
"Unlike the dependent acorn, we are more empowered, involved in the development or decay; capable of reaching potentials or succumbing to outside influence."
Human potential is not material accumulation. A new car and a big house is enticing but blind materialism reveals a poverty of ambition. Life can be rich with meaning beyond possessions and titles. We can achieve much more. Our potential is richly discovered in character and relationships. As we grow in kindness, compassion and integrity, our self-confidence waxes strong. With new growth, a sense of purpose evolves, becoming the branches and leaves of creative expression.
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