Hai Truong, owner of Ngon Vietnamese Bistro on University Avenue and Avon Street, found light rail construction workers sitting on the sidewalk in front of the entrance, blocking customer’s entrance to his restaurant on Friday, June 29, 2012. Hai Truong, though a supporter to the light rail, had complained to a Central Corridor construction supervisor about workers parking their personal vehicles for hours at a time in the one-hour parking spaces reserved for his restaurant customers. He believes in retaliation, the construction workers sat on the sidewalk surrounding his restaurant forcing customers to step over the workers to enter his establishment.
At each moment in our life we choose our thoughts, words, and actions, which will then determine our character and destiny. Moreover our life intersects and impacts those around us. Simple words, expressions, or lack of words may have a vital impact in another’s life. What we choose to do and how we choose to express our self may determine our lessons, success or failure, and our growth. In Judaism, we are taught to act with loving kindness, yet we are also taught to strike first if we are to be attacked. See: http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/1791975/jewish/Is-Turning-… Clearly not most effective in a peaceful approach.
Sometimes when we reach the end of our rope, frustrated and feeling defeated, we may neglect to see a great opportunity towards growth. To look at life from a different perspective, to look for our life mission and determine how we may fulfill it, we may need to explore our options and why something may have come into our life. In this situation with Mr. Truong and the construction workers, Mr. Truong may choose to involve legal battles (though timely, frustrating, and expensive), power struggles, or simply choose communication, each path ensuing with very different results.
It is possible, even though Mr. Truong may not feel it is necessary to pursue this direction, he could have simply offered the construction workers a cold drink, given a few small appetizers or such to these tired working men/women, and expressed his desire for their cooperation in leaving parking spaces for his customers. Though it shouldn’t be obligatory to bestow this kindness, people are typically more willing to help when approached in a respectful and kind manner, rather than from reprimands by their supervisors.
According to the “Wise Council of Souls” channeled by the late William LePar, “The trials of our life are lessons that we’ve failed to learn in the past. They are the ghosts that come back to revisit us. Although we have made faulty decisions in the past we now have the opportunity to make better decisions and escape all pain previous choices have brought to our door.” I believe it is time for us to look at the difficulties in our life as opportunities for growth, opportunities for expressing love and kindness in a different manner, and opportunities to reinvent our thinking and our ways. With each thought, spoken word, or gesture, we can create peace and harmony or discord and separation. The choice is continuously ours.
Thank-you for reading.