To Do What Must Be Done

Nathan - Palatine, Illinois
Entered on May 7, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
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One of the guys that was part of the team of high school students from my church that was down in New Orleans had a saying. We would frequently ask “what time is it?” in our multiple hour days of gutting houses. His response was always the same: “It’s game time.”

Sometimes fundamental lessons of life come from simple statements. I believe in action. At my church youth group we have a student leadership team. At almost every monthly meeting we have talked about how nice it would be to have a drama team, until I got fed up with talking. In my usual, slightly overbearing way, I started a drama team. That was about it, we started and never really got anywhere, but I can now say with certainty that drama is not something that will be happening for at least another year, and not just because we talked about it and came to that conclusion.

I really don’t like failure all that much, like what I experience in attempting to form a drama team. Failure feels like pressure to acquiesce rather than a challenge to keep going conflicting with my desire for action, and more so for results. I once made a model airplane for a school project. For building something from scratch it turned out fairly well considering the tools and skills I had available when I started, but it didn’t fly. Part of this was due to the fact that I had put more focus on doing things than learning things. I had worked on different aspects of the project rather than learning what I could about what it would take to put this model airplane into the air.

Perhaps this means that there is room for compromise; that life isn’t quite as simple as I would like it to be. Doing things is usually the fastest way of getting things done, but not always the best way. My mom is usually nervous when I’m in the kitchen doing something without strict supervision. I’m known for overlooking certain details when cooking, after all there is food to be made and what more would I want? My many successes in the kitchen include salt bread, what’s the difference between tsp and tbsp anyways; cumin muffins, cinnamon would have been much better; and vanilla waffles, which weren’t as bad as the others once you got over the taste.

Maybe I should take a different approach on this whole thing. Action is good, without it I would have a hard time getting anywhere in this big world, but it is not the first thing to do. So I will end this much like I end a debate, I had an opinion but now I’m not so sure. From the ashes of my actions I have developed a new maxim, I believe in wise and careful action, but action none the less.