Monday, October 29, 2007

Peligro! This Book May Radically Alter Your Life

Peligro means danger! in Spanish. You'll usually see it associated with piso mojado (wet floor) or posted on a greenhouse you shouldn't enter because of recent pesticide application. In this case, I'm issuing the warning Max Lucado should have issued when his "Cure for the Common Life" was published back in January 2006. When I first got my hands on the book last October, I wish someone had shouted "Ay! Peligro! You better watch out reading that book."
At the time, I was at a women's retreat in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, in an old villa at Mo Ranch, with five hours of rest and recharge (nap) time. Looking back, I see now that the title, "Cure for the Common Life," appealed to me because, frankly, I was living a fairly common life. Overall it's a pretty blessed existence, but at the time it was feeling a little common and was beginning to wear me down.
In the book, Lucado takes you through very detailed but simple steps to help you discover your "sweet spots," or the places, subjects and circumstances in your life when you felt your happiest and most successful. I played along and remembered past successes when I felt accomplished and at peace, all of which had a common thread. Then I shut the book and promptly fell into a deep depression.
Now I must caution I'm writing this from Texas and we are known to exagerrate. Hyperbole is my maiden name. It wasn't a deep depression, really, I just felt like crap because the book reminded me of what I was meant to be doing with my life and I wasn't doing it. At the time I had little hope of finding the freedom to live in anything close to a sweet spot. And that's apt to make any one feel just an eentsy bit depressed.
This past weekend, at the second annual women's retreat, the exercises in "Cure for the Common Life" were part of the curriculum. One of the other retreaters refused to play along and my inquiring mind required me to ask her why. Many of you know I recently got up the gumption to take the leap and get back to living in my sweet spot. Lucado's book played a big part in helping me take that plunge. My newfound purpose makes me want everyone to know the happiness I've found. My fellow retreater's response to my question was so revealing: "I did the exercises last spring and it made me depressed and it lasted forever (she's a Texan too) and I'm just not doing it again," she said. I knew exactly what she meant. Of course I also wondered just what she's meant to be doing that she isn't.
I got to thinking about how many people aren't living up to their God-given potential because of fear, family obligations, dream crushers (as my daughter Mary says) or any other reason that keeps us from doing what we're meant to do as part of a fulfilled life. This book is your first step. It's worth the risk of becoming a little bit depressed. I promise it will give you have something to think about, something to pray about, something to dream about other than your current lackluster existence. Just don't say I didn't warn you.
And if you want to order it right away, here's the link to it on


Lavender Chick said...

Okay, I'm ordering the book right now. BUT - If I get depressed it's YOUR JOB to come cheer me up!

Actually, I think I'm doing what I love... My problem is I'm doing too many things I love and I need to narrow it down to 1, or 4. See, it's so hard...

Painted Groove Girl said...

I know just what you mean and today I remembered that I didn't mention that problem specifically. In my case, and yours too, I have so many things that I want to do and I had too many things I was attempting to do well. They were so wide-ranging that I was eternally confused and frazzled. The book helped me narrow my focus to what I am probably best at.

Enid said...

ditto to both of these comments.

So much to do, I feel like I'm spread so thin.

This was a great post. ;)

Barbara said...

Well said.