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To Trust or Not to Trust in the Game of Life

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This is not what I originally intended to write today. I was making great progress on an essay on a different subject when I lost it completely. I thought I’d been saving it as I went, but for some reason there was nothing left of it when I tried to recover the document. So instead of trying to recreate that essay, I felt like writing about a different topic related to the loss of my previous article.

When I realized that I had lost the article, I have to admit I was disappointed. I was putting my time, creativity, and energy into it. It seemed to be going well. Then I lost the whole thing. I was confused because it felt good to be writing what I was writing. I even thought what I was writing would benefit the people who would read it. So why did things not go the way I was hoping they would?

In my world, nothing happens by accident. Nothing. Everything has a potential purpose, and I believe one of my main jobs in life is to take circumstances as they come to me (and other people) and do the best I can in that moment to make the most of it (whatever “it” is).

That’s what I’m doing right now. If the other piece I was writing was so important to produce right now, then what happened wouldn’t have happened. It is possible the former article was supposed to get published today, and that it just needed to be completely rewritten. Since writing this feels better to me right now, I’ll keep plugging away at this one and trust that now was not the time for the other piece I was working on to be published.

Trust is one of the most important aspects to my whole “everything has a potential purpose” idea. This also happens to be something that I am currently working on in my own life. This morning I was thinking about how things often get much, much worse before they get better. We usually assume if things aren’t going the way we want them to, they must be “bad.”

This kind of thinking denies us the opportunities to maximize the circumstances we attract into our lives. If you think about anything that happened in your life that you didn’t want to happen, chances are the first thing you did was resist it. In some way you denied it or pushed back against it. You probably thought something like, “This can’t be happening!” or “I hate this!” or “I wish this would just go away!” or whatever exclamatory phrases and not-so-fun feelings occurred to you at the time.

What if, instead of resisting, we assumed this thing we were not expecting and currently not wanting is actually an opportunity? What if we have actually been waiting for this very moment to take our lives to a whole new level? What if the thing we wish wasn’t happening is actually the secret doorway to an unbelievably wonderful future?

Don’t we all have stories of things we thought were terrible that actually turned out to be blessings in disguise once we had the benefits of time, experience, and perspective? How about we take that attitude all of the time, regardless of appearances. What do we lose by doing this?

What benefit is there to thinking something is horribly terrible with absolutely no possibility of anything good ever coming from it? Who ever got anywhere worth getting to or did anything worth doing believing that? Even if you happen to be right in your negative assessment of a situation (not likely), what fun is it to be right if you’re also miserable because you think there’s no hope?

What I know for sure is that our chances for success are much better if we are open to the possibilities within less-than-desirable events and circumstances. While most of us resist these kinds of events out of habit (I plead guilty), my hope is we can all open up a little bit to the possibility that even the worst circumstances and events hold the seeds for real progress for ourselves and for others.

Good farmers plant seeds trusting that the seed, sun, rain, and soil will do what they are supposed to do. The universe has been rigged for our benefit, whether we get that or not. Perhaps the next time something doesn’t go the way we want it to we can choose to believe it has a useful purpose, even if we can’t see it. Let’s believe it may well be exactly what we need. I humbly submit that is exactly what it is.

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About Bill Frase

  • Good thoughts. Can you send a copy of this to Congress?

  • Dr. Juliann Mitchell, PhD


    I think your piece is timely and relevant given all that is going on in our country right now. Well said!


  • Legna Moned

    Excellent piece, Bill. As a writer I can COMPLETELY relate to losing that “all-important” piece of writing to a computer glitch — and as a human being, a million and one other (apparent) incidents of “bad luck.” I hope a lot of people read your article. I read it at exactly the moment today when I needed your words the most.

    Kind regards,
    Legna Moned

  • Sure, I’ll send a copy to my senators and congress-person. Who knows?!

    Thanks for the suggestion!

  • Thank you all so much for your positive comments!