When I was born, my memory banks were
empty. Over the next twenty years, I accumulated the storm of thoughts
that blows through my mind. I didnít choose most of those thoughts; I
inherited them from my parents and culture. The good thoughts are a
blessing that lasts a lifetime. The bad ones are a curse that haunts me
until I die. What I have inside my mind determines the outcome of my
life. I need to know whatís inside, and if itís bad, I need to change
When I squeeze a lemon, I get lemon juice because that is whatís
inside. When the pressures of life squeeze me, the contents of my mind
come out for everyone to see. If anger and hostility come out, itís
because that is whatís inside. If love and courage come out, itís
because that is what I put there.
I am careful about what I allow inside my mind. When I put in good
things, my thoughts bring me joy. When I put in toxic waste, my
thoughts become an irritating presence I must endure. What do I find
when I squeeze my mind? I discover the thoughts that I have been
Copyright © 2013
Everything that God creates is beautiful, and that's why I love
beauty so much. It's the closest I can come to actually touching
God. It's like God and I are living on opposite sides of a two way
mirror. One his side, he touches things and makes them beautiful.
On my side, I touch the same thing and experience his beauty.
I make a major effort to fill my mind with beautiful things, and that's
why I've got butterflies on my mind.
When I squeeze my mind, I get butterflies.
If I got to live my life over again, I would still go sailing.
In our later years, we all look back at what we have done with our
lives. When we go into rewind, we tend to remember the good
times and forget the bad.
When I rolled my van in New Zealand and broke two legs, fractured
five ribs, and punctured one lung, pain and suffering became my
new and constant companions. I got to know them personally
in a way that I had never known before.
In spite of all that pain and misery, I can't recall with any
degree of intensity what it was like to go through that
experience. I can remember that I was uncomfortable and that
it took six months to learn to walk again, but I don't feel the
pain any longer. It's been erased from my mind.
Contrast that with my cruising
memories. When I go into rewind, I can instantly visualize
and relive my eleven year voyage around the world. I can see
myself hiking in the jungles of Nuku Hiva. I can see the
Pyramids of Giza and the Temples of Luxor. I can see myself
driving in the sand dunes of Arabia, I can see the Israeli
Navy gunboat circling around Exit Only as we wait for permission
to land in Israel. I can see the crew of Exit Only exploring
Nabatean Petra. I can see myself standing among the
Orangutans of Borneo. I can see the humpback whales jumping
in front of our boat off Fraser Island in Australia. I can
see fjordland of New Zealand majestically surrounding me on all
sides. I can see Mount Cook, the Franz Josef Glacier, and
the Canterbury plains. I can see the Australian outback as
well as the Sydney Harbor Bridge. I can see Chinatown in
Singapore and Buddhist temples in Thailand.
These and a thousand other positive adventures come welling up in
my mind when I go into rewind and observe a not-so-instant-replay
of my life.
That's why it's so important to live my dreams. That's why I
would still go sailing. When I look back over my life, I
want tons of positive memories to overwhelm my mind and to remind
me that life is truly good.