The title of this post came to me as I was recently reading the book Falling Upward by Richard Bohr. In this book the author says each of us has two distinct parts of our lives. The first is making the container and the second is filling it with what we were meant to do. Although I don’t necessarily agree with some parts of this book the thought of having two distinctive parts of your life is thought-provoking for me. It just makes sense.
How much of your life you spend building the container and how much filling it with what you are meant to be varies with each of us. Some probably spend most if not all making the container and then have no time to actually fill it. While others build their container very early in life and then have more time to do what they were meant to do.
I personally believe that I am probably one of the first group. I grappled with who I was (i.e. my container) for many years. I just couldn’t decide what I wanted to be when I grew up. I mean I was in my fifties and still asking that question. I just couldn’t decide the shape of my container. It wasn’t until I managed to get free from the corporate world that my container really started to take shape. So here I am in the later part of my life finally filling my container. My container was always meant to be filled with compassion for my fellow-man. I discovered that I am an altruist to my heart. I just didn’t realize that for so many years. I spent so many fruitless years building what others told me my container would be. I never really looked into my heart to discover my true container’s shape.
That brings me back to the title of this post. It seems that there are so many people today who have filled their container with nothing but sour grapes. Their purpose seems to be making sure that no one gets anything they haven’t worked for or somehow don’t deserve. Our current political process seems to be overrun with these types of containers.
I find that fact so bitterly ironic because many of the sour grape people adamantly claim that we are a Christian nation. Everyone who has studied even the slightest levels of theology know that one of Christianity’s foundations is that Jesus died for our sins so that we can go to heaven. Our dogma tells us that we absolutely don’t deserve what he did but he did it out of the love for us. So these sour grape folks are basing their eternity on unearned grace while denying those around them of their own personal grace. This totally confuses me. How can they possibly reconcile the two attitudes????