Tick-Tock-Tick-Tock. Hurray it’s 2011, how I love thee! I haven’t blogged for some time now as I took the last few months considering a few things in life dead-seriously. It’s a year-end spiritual thing when I’d stop and ponder what I did in one year in terms of life, career, family and spiritual journey. Kind of a poignant reflection similar to the action of peeling layers off an onion that may be painful and teary but reveling nonetheless when you reach the core. Obviously, God is always the victorious master chef who peels the layers off me.
This sort of spiritual journey is crucial to align our hearts to God’s heart after a whirlwind 12 months of doing so many things we thought were important which might be meaningless in God’s sight. A guy friend who shared similar inquisitive quest for life lent me a memoir before my overseas work trip. It is an unassuming yellow cover book by Japanese author cum marathon runner cum inspirational speaker Haruki Murakami called What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. The book came in and swept me off my feet just when I started having all these itchy thoughts of wanting to try to start my own business.
Murakami, a veteran runner, described that pain was inevitable for a marathon journey but a marathon runner is always consumed by the single-purposeness of pursuing a dream- Even the thought of suffering when we run the whole course of 32 miles could be non-existence if you insisted on pursuing your passion to the end.
I rediscovered a committed passion for my job and the idea of taking one step at a time with the same focus that Murakami had. He aimed to be the best runner not because he wanted to win all the awards but to gain a sense of accomplishment for himself. Murakami courageously sold off his bar business so that he could commit full time to both running and writing. The author had since been taken to US, Greece, Japan and more countries to discover the marvel of the world through the races and his published books.
Almost at the same time, God spoke through a girlfriend that I must read a book which had recently been made into a hit movie starring the ever-beautiful Julia Roberts called Eat, Pray and Love. I still haven’t watched the movie yet but I finally got hold of the book from the local bookshop Popular and the revelation has been even greater! Every word in every page of the book jumped out alive, almost doing a line dancing in my head convincing me of the importance of a kind of sojourn to find our heart.
In the book, the author indulged in extensive traveling which opened up her heart as she discovered her life path along with the pulse of different cities and countries intensely and deeply. Through traveling, she found her place in relation to the world and the different pace, culture and beliefs that people from those places subscribe to. It inspired her to look at life out of the cubicles of life she was confined to.
Once I cut out a quote from a magazine that says a man travels around the world in search of his place only to find that home is where his heart is. So to those of you who have lost touch with your dream and want to live it, start doing those annual reflections and somewhere, somehow a dream becomes a reality with the right and fearless focus.
Who needs a new year resolution anyway? A holy sojourn in search of where our heart is might just be the perfect prescription to start the year and finish it well.