Life Is lIke A Roll of Toilet Paper: With Apologies to Forest Gump

As I was driving to work the other day my mind seemed focused on the following thought—that each of us must come to terms with the choices we have made in life—the good, the bad and the ugly.

Many are the roads we have chosen to take and many are those we have not traveled. There have been lots of twists and turns that we didn’t anticipate, many forks that we have encountered—all eventually leading us to or depositing us into this very moment of our lives.

Last night at a small fellowship group I heard about the toilet paper principle for the first time. It goes something like this: The closer to the end of the roll it gets, the faster is seems to go.

Life is a lot like that—each day, week or month passes us by in its fine frenzy—hardly here before it’s spent and stowed away in our memory banks like a soft summer breeze.

I have more or less come to terms with where I am in life and how that relates to the choices I have made along the way—yet at the same time I am not fully satisfied with where I find myself in any given moment.

One of my favorite bible verses is found in Isaiah 30:15 and reads: In repentance and rest is your salvation, In quietness and trust is your strength.

What that verse speaks to me is that it is up to each of us to find the place of peace and contentment that exists when these principles are exercised. It is not enough to believe this verse is truth—the key is to allow it to wash over us and change us or the circumstance we find ourselves in. 

So, just because we have come to terms with our life up to this point, doesn’t mean that we won’t have more choices to make today and tomorrow and into the future. And that is exactly my point: even though I acknowledge the existence of a road map to help me find my way, I don’t always take it out of the glove box and use it for reference. 

And we all know how frustrating it can be when we have temporarily lost our way or missed our turn. Sometimes we tough it out and keep going full speed and hoping to find the proper route. Often we stop at the next service station in order to ask directions which will in turn get us back on the road and onto our next stop.

It seems to me that as we get older one of the best things we can do for our sanity is to accept where we are at and the various limitations that the aging process brings with it. We can’t multi-task as well as we once did—that boiling pot on the stove that you left for just a moment to get something else done will keep on boiling until the pot is burned or the soup is ruined. Sometimes it is hard enough to keep one plate spinning less alone the 3 or 4 we used to keep in the air all the time when we were younger.

And this line of thinking pre-supposes that we are in good health and still paying our bills in a timely fashion—that we have friends who care about us and children that are doing well on their own. If these conditions are different, the goal is the same but getting there may be a little more problematic.

Suffice it to say (and I use that phrase a lot) the shoes we are most familiar walking in are our own. I have worn out many a pair and hope to wear out many more over the next several years. Yet today my goal is not to walk that much, but to rest a while along the way and allow the quietness that I create give God the opportunity to increase my trust and calm my fears.

And that’s a good ride any day.

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1 Response to Life Is lIke A Roll of Toilet Paper: With Apologies to Forest Gump

  1. You are so right about this! As you recently mentioned at a gathering, adaptability is the key.
    Adaptability with contentment is great gain.
    Thank God!

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