Right Things and Staircases

“Always do the right thing, even when it’s the hard thing.”  Bryan Stevenson

I heard this listening to a podcast yesterday.  It hung with me through the day and sent me this morning to that complex passage in Romans 7:7-25 which is enough to make anyone’s head twist off.  (“I do not understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do.  And if I do what I do not want to do….”)  Heck, that passage even leads Paul to declare: “What a wretched man I am.”  He writes persuasively enough that I want to agree with him! 

Still, the sentiment has some value, even if served with a side of angst.  Martin Luther King Jr. (as he is wont to do) takes some of the angst out of it in his statement (written so many ways I am not sure what the actual quote is) that we don’t have to see the whole staircase to take the first step.  That seems to be the best wisdom to me because in the twists and turns of life, while I certainly lay out the staircase ahead in my mind (and in my mind, it is often filled with loose toys, slippery spots, and lots of perils), the reality is I can’t see all of the steps along the way, much less the landing at the end of the staircase. 

So, I am fairly confident that despite its vagaries the “next right thing” may be the best guide there is, if for no other reason than I am more certain that I need to beware of those folks (myself included) when they claim to have certainty about the staircase.

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