I enjoy a good movie. Actually, I enjoy most movies I see; which makes it hard for some who know me to take my recommendations. That being said, The Greatest Showman is a movie that has struck a chord inside of me. It highlights the timeless tale of realizing that everything you could have wanted was right in front of you.
The song From Now On towards the end highlights that theme. In a movie though, we don’t get to see events play out in real time. We see PT Barnum’s singing declaration to come back home immediately followed by a reunited family and a rejuvenated circus. In real time though, the decision to come back home takes but a second; the journey to get there on the other hand takes time.
Developing character takes time, perseverance, and dedication.
That’s where I find myself today.
The change that needs to take place starts right now. This is a decision to be content and to be present. This is a decision to turn loneliness into solitude*. This is a decision to embrace the good all around me, and open my eyes to that which is right in front of me. Selfishness is more consuming than selflessness. Selfishness holds us captive to discontentment and disdain for the life we have, but selflessness frees us and allows us to see the world we live in. Selflessness leads to a true love for others, and to truly love others; we must take care of ourselves. This seems so contradictory, yet it is the way that we are designed.
We must “love our neighbors as our self” as you may have heard it said before, so there is an expectation for us to become the best versions of ourselves to be who we need to be for the world we live in. Here is a quote that I have used before, but always rings true:
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Thurman
All of what I just wrote are only words and dust in the wind unless action follows. When I find myself feeling alone, I must choose to see that as an opportunity for solitude. When regret begins to consume me, I must forgive myself and practice self kindness. Eyes open, aware of what is happening inside of me; but more so aware of the space around me.
Though we make this declaration, it will take time to form new habits. It will take time to learn new ideas. It will take time to build trust. This is a call to take action, because the change will not take place if we sit around and wait for it.
It is likely that we will find ourselves the morning after this declaration of change, battling with the same emotions and attitude that we swore off the night before; and this is where the work begins. We must exercise forgiveness and kindness for ourselves, and realize that all good things take time. It takes time, but it’s worth it.
It takes time, but it’s worth it.
I leave you with the chorus from the song From Now On from the Greatest Showman:
From now on, these eyes will not be blinded by the lights
From now on, what’s waited for tomorrow starts tonight…tonight
Let this promise in me start, like an anthem in my heart
From now on, From now on.
*From Loneliness to Solitude is the first movement from the book Reaching Out by Henri Nouwen, which I highly recommend for anyone looking to gain a better understanding of the Spiritual connections inside of us; and the impact that can have on the lives around us.