Thursday, August 25, 2011

Take a chance; I dare you

How many chances does one get in life, as allotted by God, or the powers that be -- those unseen forces moving behind life like stagehands doing what the big director tells them? It stands to reason, if you spend any time reasoning within the confines of faith, that chances are predetermined, or fixed. ( **Feel free to attack this question from a non-religious angle. We're all friends here.)

Chances don’t breed with other chances, they just exist until used up, or get missed. All but for a short time chances embody possibility, potential; and then they vanish into the dust storm of yesterday.

Is there a jar of chances up there with your name on a shelf, and it’s left up to you to take them at your leisure? Is it up to you to decide when to take a chance?

If you could count chances I bet it’s pretty hard. How many chances might be waiting up there in the jar? In great numbers they look like a thousand tasty jelly beans. What’s so difficult about taking a jelly bean? Are you intent on saving it up for later? You don’t get to save chances up for later, or store them up by not taking them. When they’re gone, they’re gone.

And who doesn’t feel the pain when they’ve missed a chance? It’s palpable, like a bad taste in your mouth. Your heart aches and the anguish stays with you forever, like a parasite. Before leaving, missed chances mix up a little batch of festering regret for later.

People don’t know how many chances are left in their jars. If I could see mine I’d beg for more chances to love, to care, to give, to connect, to laugh, to try, to fail, to impress, to relax, to let my guard down, to hold a hand, to hug my kids, to see things, to share things, to write things, to taste things, to open up to living.

Take a chance, dammit; take them all!