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It is not the cards we are dealt...

Life consists not in holding good cards but in playing those you hold well. (Josh Billings) I once told a peer we all just needed to play with the cards we were dealt. We were going through a tough transition, restructuring all of our work, parceling out various components of what we once had done to others in completely different departments. Our duties were changing and it was difficult to adjust. Yet, the cards were dealt - we held them now. It was now our responsibility to play those cards well. I play Euchre and I have been dealt some pretty lousy hands. Yet, if you understand when the right time to play those lousy cards is, you can still manage to help your partner score some points. It is more about 'being in the game' than it is the cards we are being dealt. We stay in the game, knowing we will have advantageous moments when the cards we hold can be played well!

You’re blessed when you stay on course, walking steadily on the road revealed by God. You’re blessed when you follow his directions, doing your best to find him. That’s right—you don’t go off on your own; you walk straight along the road he set. You, God, prescribed the right way to live; now you expect us to live it. Oh, that my steps might be steady, keeping to the course you set; Then I’d never have any regrets in comparing my life with your counsel. I thank you for speaking straight from your heart; I learn the pattern of your righteous ways. I’m going to do what you tell me to do; don’t ever walk off and leave me. (Psalm 119:7 MSG)

It is easy to complain about the hand we have been dealt, is it not? A lot easier than trying to figure out how to play those 'lousy cards'. It isn't about the cards as much as it is about the one holding them! I am not talking about Euchre here, but about real life. We don't have to play those cards on our own. I didn't learn Euchre from a book. I learned it by watching others who play it very well! When we want to do nothing more than throw in our cards in life and just give up, are we discounting the value of even a 'lousy hand'? Probably! In Euchre, there are cards that 'trump' other cards. You call your 'trump suit' before you begin the round of play. It is possible for a player to possess zero trump cards - making it very, very hard to score any books in the game. Yet, you play with a partner and you can help them make a few!

All of life is about the road we travel and how well we travel it. We can walk steadily on the path opening up before us, or we can blaze our own path. We can see on as 'too hard' or 'too boring' for us, choosing another that will be easy-peasy or a little more exciting. If I were to ask some of you how that has been working for you, there might be a little bit of complaining about the path. We forget it was not the path that really mattered, but how well we walked it and with whom that walk was undertaken. The path is important. The more important thing is that we remember who we are 'partnered with' in walking it! As long as we just see the impossibilities of a situation, we will never want to use it to our advantage! Even the worst of circumstances can produce something of value in our lives. Just sayin!

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