Sunday, February 17, 2013

Two Voices

Most people know me to be a cheerful and whimsical person. I'm the kind of girl who gets a Happy Meal at McDonald's and plays with the Hello Kitty toy. I sometimes skip instead of walking. I splash in puddles, crunch leaves, and generally enjoy the small things in life.

However, some few know the other side of me -- the one that's analytical and critical. This can be useful, and it's often how I approach problem solving and try to improve myself. The problem is that it has a tendency to manifest in the form of complaints and judgments. Projecting both voices onto my surroundings can leave me stuck between convictions. I'm still trying to decide if the exercise is useful.

Turning these voices loose on Taylor University results in conversations/impressions like this:

All the wonderful people everywhere!
Those couple of people that set off the "rage" trigger in my brain, maybe because they're contrasted against all the wonderful people.

So many ways to get involved in the community, resulting in fun and meaningful service!
Many possibilities for getting bogged down with responsibilities and others' expectations. Can you really give yourself to everything?

Late night conversations and movies with friends.
Time you really should spend doing something useful with your life. Like, weren't you supposed to be finishing your story?

A tight-knit community with potential for wonderful relationships.
A place where some still find judgement and nowhere to turn.

There are so many ways to learn about God and find growth.
But are you depending on your surroundings to grow your spiritual life?

I love learning!
You're not going to be in a classroom the rest of your life, at least not literally. Try harder.

There's so much beauty everywhere.
Are you appreciating it, or cultivating it?

Though at the outset the first voice seems largely superior (or at least happier), it gives many observations that aren't inherently useful. It needs to be tempered by the second voice. The thing I want to keep in mind is that the two voices don't have to be in opposition. They can work together. And when they actually do, I accomplish the things I consider most worthy. When they don't, I feel like I'm chipping at some stone block that refuses to be shaped.

Lately, I've been spending lots of time trading in granite dust. I think it's time to get down to the actual sculpture. I love Taylor, though I can see many cons among the pros. All I can do is try to make something beautiful, anyway.

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