You have an opportunity to be shaped by the moments and days throughout your life. The alternative can destructive.

30. 30. 1. 18.

What? Those are the dates over this past week that I reflected on because they impact me. And in turn, they impact the systems in which I am a part. Each one of us is part of a Be Shapedseparate system and those systems bump into each other causing all systems to be shaped and grow. Otherwise they become a destructive and alienating force to one another, and continue to be destructive to a lower and lower common denominator. That means it hurts us not to be shaped by the moments and situations we encounter.

Systems can be the worst place for acknowledging moments that shape us. And that is bad.

A missed birthday for a little sister because the day was busy… A company forgetting that they overcame near closure because of the work of one specific team a year ago… A church not celebrating or mourning the passing of a key member… A town not acknowledging the hurt felt by someone who called it home their whole life…

Moments shape us and need to be remembered for how our story changes together.

What are those key dates I mentioned?

30… As I took my youngest’s picture for his first day of high school I realized it has been 30 years since my first day of high school. We were only 1 day apart. My family ushers in a new place in our history.

30… That meant that the day before was 30 years since my mom passed away. Yes, the first day of high school was the day after my mom died. That changed my family and impacted how I approached others.

1… A year ago I embarked on walking with Church of The Way as they enter a new chapter of community, and I get to help them figure out what that looks like.

18… 9/11. Countless systems were shaped and broken 18 years ago, and some continue to mend and redefine themselves today.

Being shaped is a choice. A hard choice. It means acknowledging the journey, understanding the impact, and choosing to allow life to go on, even if changes need to be made. And we rarely do this in isolation.

Call it resilience, call it being shaped.

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