Lurking temptations

by Rod Smith

When I search my heart – the deep intersection of my mind, longings, regrets (profound and benign), education (formal and informal) – I see lurking temptations. They are gross and subtle, often holding hands the very best of who I am:

  • There’s a temptation to be bigger than others, to outwit, to demean with subtlety. This temptation can eclipse my sincere belief that we are equal, that we all have talents and skills, and that acknowledging, appreciating, and endorsing yours never diminishes mine.
  • There’s a temptation to undercut, short-circuit, play the system, to go around the process of whatever I am facing, and to want or feel like I deserve special treatment. This dark urge tries to overwhelm my sincere belief that none of us needs ever to use our power, real or perceived, to get our way.
  • There’s a temptation to dominate the room, set the agenda, sway the crowd, to lead, even in situations where I have no formal or informal leadership role. This life-long battle (sometimes won, often lost) blurs my sincere appreciation of the skills and talents we all bring to every context because in those moments I am so caught up in myself.

If any of this also rings true for you please let me know.

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