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Published Monday, May 18, 2015, 5:39 pm

Knotted to G-d

By Maury Adkins

It is very easy to become discouraged when we fail to view things in a panoramic way. The failures of yesteryear, coupled with the colossal blowing of it today, can be overwhelming causing our minds to play tricks on us. It is easy to think we may never get it right. Ever been there?

There are days I am a loving, caring, affectionate guy. There are other days I am the poster child for immaturity, selfishness, and hurtful words. It seems to be an almost bi-polar spiritual journey for me. It takes its toll.

Our days come with their own set of blessings and their own set of trials. All of the events of each day are meant to spur us higher in our spiritual ascendancy. For me, some days are more like the old two steps forward, three steps back mantra. You?

It’s hard to find balance at times. Moments of complete and absolute joy are followed by moments of fear and desolation. There is really no way to categorize these moments into a clear and concise pattern. They come, they go, we learn, we grow, or we don’t. It’s enough to make us crazy if we let it.

Life doesn’t allow itself to be placed in neat little categories. It’s meant to be cherished and lived and it includes the good and the not-so-good. That’s the way our Creator designed it.

In my failures, I judge myself very harshly. The antecedents for my self-deprecation are not important at this point in life. I grew up with it and have fought against it all my life. The battle is part of my story and seems to be part of my given struggle. The key for all of us is to find peace with our journey and to come to love ourselves so that we may also love others.

There is a story that is attributed to the sages, who are said to teach: At birth we are tied to G-d with a string and every time we sin, the string breaks. To those who do teshuvah G-d sends the angel Gabriel to make knots in the string so that the humble and contrite are once again tied to G-d. Because each of one of us fails, because we all lose our way on the path to righteousness from time to time, our strings are full of knots. But the rabbis like to say, a string with many knots is shorter than one without knots. So the person with many failures but a humble heart is closer to G-d.

Of late, G-d has brought several people into my life dealing with similar struggles. I am grateful to share the journey with these wonderful people. The knots in string pull me closer to G-d, also pull me closer to others with knots in their strings. There is a closeness in shared struggles, brokenness and the joy of overcoming.

I don’t like it when I slip the knots that bind me G-d, to others, and to my story. There is a comfort in knowing my failures and subsequent teshuvah have drawn me closer to my Creator and to many of my fellow man. May we all be on a quest for restoration with G-d and man.

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