I Was Born To Be Victorious
By Clyde E. Gumbs
When I look back upon this spiritual journey that I call my life, I am amazed at how difficult I made things. I was born into a family with many hard earned and inspiring accomplishments. My parents were intelligent, well-informed, and hard working. They were also successful entrepreneurs and passionate community servants. My siblings similarly have used their gifts and talents for the benefit of our family and the communities where they have lived. I never doubted that I had been blessed with a wonderful family and would have a great opportunity to live a fulfilling life.
My challenge was to identify what it would take to have a fulfilling life. I hoped that I had been born for some great purpose, even though I had no idea what it might be. I knew what I liked to do. I knew what people thought I did well. I knew what people thought I should do and expected of me. I was always encouraged to do “good” things, “positive’ things, “better” things, and of course the “right” things.
Despite many noteworthy achievements along the way, for decades and decades, I experienced a recurring sense of frustration, boredom, failure and disillusionment, which, at times, led to indulgence, escapism, recklessness and wreckage. Inevitably, the indulgence, escapism, recklessness and wreckage led to shame, humiliation, guilt, despair and resignation. To my great surprise and as if by an act of divine grace, despite the shame, humiliation, guilt, despair and resignation, I was still alive and still standing. Despite it all, a new day would dawn, and a new opportunity for redemption and to live a fulfilling life always remained.
Ultimately, what became very clear to me was that focusing on what other people or even I expected me to be or do did not create a fulfilling life. Similarly, focusing on my own or others judgments about what was “good,” “positive,” “better” and “right” did not create a fulfilling life either. What was not clear to me was that there was a simple, if not initially obvious, alternative. What fundamentally different way was there to look at life other than: good versus bad, positive versus negative, and better versus worse? For most of my life, I had never thought to ask myself that question. It never occurred to me until one day when I realized that my heart’s desire was to have an inspired and inspiring life. I desired a life where I could fulfill the purpose I was born for and my potential inside that purpose. My true desire was to be able to live with a compelling sense of purpose and destiny. I had never been clear about that before and had never lived with the clarity of that intention.
I was not concerned about whether an inspired and inspiring life was a good, positive, or better life. I was concerned instead about living a life where I fulfilled my purpose, potential and destiny. I was not concerned about what others considered to be the right life for me. I was concerned instead about being the person I was born to be living the life I was born to live.
From that perspective, I could see very plainly and simply that there were only two fundamentally different ways that I could experience and relate to life. In any moment, I was either, “inspired, on purpose and authentic” or “uninspired, off purpose and inauthentic” By inspired, I mean “in spirit,” spiritually connected, and in spiritual alignment. By on purpose, I mean in alignment with the purpose I was born for. By authentic, I mean being the person I was born to be fulfilling the purpose I was born for.
Imagine if living an inspired and inspiring life fulfilling my purpose and potential was my birthright. Imagine if all that required of me was to be nothing more than the person I was born to be. What a revelation!