Tuesday, May 20, 2014

If You Build It...

          There is a famous "mis-quoted" line in the old movie "Field of Dreams."  Most people quote:  "if you build it, they will come."  In actuality, the line states, "if you build it HE will come."  As the movie progresses, Ray - a rural Iowa farmer hears a voice telling him to build a baseball field where his corn fields are.  He builds the field and tries time and time again to figure out its purpose, but always comes up short of the true purpose.  Finally, the truth is revealed.  Ray didn't build the field for dead baseball players, for retired players or even for those who never got a chance to fulfill their dream of playing baseball.  He didn't build it as a money maker or a crowd pleaser.  The voice that told him to build the field gave him another message...  "ease his pain."  No matter who visited the field from "beyond" or who came to the field invited in the present, they did not complete the field's purpose until finally, Ray's own father comes from beyond as the "catcher" on the mound.  When he takes off his mask, Ray sees a younger version of his father and is given a second chance to pitch the ball with his father.    Ray had been given one more opportunity because he chose to listen to the voice inside.  You see, Ray and his dad had experienced a falling out over baseball when Ray was just a teenager.  At age 14, Ray had refused to play catch with his father and consequently at age 17, Ray left home, never to return and never to see his dad again.  By building a "bridge" ( a playing field) to the past, Ray found peace in the present and a second chance to make right many wrongs. 

          Thinking about this movie and the message it provides, produced emotion beyond what I expected as I sat to write today.  I thought about my own life - missed opportunities, decisions made, paths taken, plans not fulfilled, people from past and present walking through my life...  Then I thought about the dreams hidden deep in my heart, the voice that whispers in my head and resonates throughout the depths of my soul.  Passion burns deeper than ever to fulfill a dream, to accomplish a goal.  Each day that I step toward it and try to figure out "why" I am not giving up on it even when it makes no sense, even when obstacles continue to block my forward progress, I begin to realize more about my purpose.  Yes I write words on a page each day and reach out to others because of a deep desire to make a difference, but the truth is...  I push forward not so much because of them, but because of me.  You see, we all have a purpose, we all have a dream that has been deposited on the inside of us.  Each of us has a reason for living, for being here.  The world won't stop spinning tomorrow if we don't fulfill that purpose or pursue that dream, but rest assured, there will be something missing.  Each time we question that voice inside that speaks to us, that nudges us on, we are robbing ourselves, our friends, our family, our community our world of another fulfilled person who contributes to the light of life.  If we do not pursue our passion in life first and foremost for ourselves, then it will not truly impact others around us.  If you are trying to understand your purpose, to make sense of the steps forward that the whisper of your heart is nudging towards, look no further than the face in your own mirror.  If you build it he, she, you will come to a place of peace, understanding and acceptance, that will serve as a playing field for everyone who walks the bases of your life.  The joy that you find in pursuing what you love, what you are compelled to do, will be like a reservoir for others. 

          There are plenty of corn fields, but how many rural baseball fields are there?  Are you ready to step out of the ordinary, to go against status quo, of what is expected of you - to pursue a passion that makes no sense?   That seemingly will bring no profit?  Listen to that "still small voice" and begin to build!  "If you build it HE will come..."