As we took a knee after my final football practice in high school, the coach told the team that if we didn't pursue a life of purpose and set goals for ourselves, we'd be in jail or dead within a year. Many of us shrugged it off as just talk...
I left home for college a few weeks after high school. I believe my parents were happy about that move. I was just happy about having one of my best friends with me. After a partial year at school he decided to return home and a few months later I received word that he was caught up in a bad situation and murdered.
On another visit I ran into a high school teammate. He was an outstanding receiver with great hands.The boy could catch anything. But now, he didn't look like the same guy I remembered. He explained to me that he'd been locked up for a few years. He was remorseful and wished he could take back what happened. He updated me on the many who'd been in and out and the others who had already passed. We exchanged a quick embrace and I haven't seen him since. I hope he is well.
I was sitting in the courtroom the other day taking care of a traffic citation. Before my name is called I listen to the different cases that come before the judge; even cases heard from inmates around the state via web cam. From youth, young adults, grown men and women, and even heads of households who are locked up for weeks and some for several months. Surprisingly I recognize the last name of one of the inmates. I don't know the kid personally but I know his family and the resemblance doesn't lie.
I felt a sense of sadness as I sat there thinking about the lost hope and forgotten dreams. Many if not all come from families who love them and want nothing but the best for them. Then I am reminded that we all have the freedom to choose, but we are not free to choose the consequences of those choices.
We place blame and make excuses for our shortcomings and our failures because the world we live in says that we should. We judge the actions of others and hate on the success of those around us. Though difficult, if we want to change our situation - we need to change our behavior. This is true with any goals or aspirations we have in life. There are no shortcuts and It takes discipline and hard work. There is no way around it.
Overcome. Achieve. Victory. IKUNA
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