All our lives we’re taught and encouraged to stay within the lines. Many times we’re rewarded for doing so and punished for not obeying the restrictions.
Have you ever watched children mark off boundary lines in the grass, establishing a playing field?
Children pick out home base in games of Hide and Seek and determine the area for hiding. Then there’s the invisible line between yard and street which parents teach children not to cross.
As little children we not only learn to color inside the lines and how to cut out paper doll clothes along the lines. From hop scotch to marbles, we stay between the lines. Lines seem to govern all our childhood games.
Then, as adults we park our cars between the lines, we drive on our side of the line, we stand behind the line at the post office until it’s our turn. We get in the correct line at the grocery story if we have ten or less items. We have mental lines in personal relationships we know not to push past.
Law enforcement officers monitor road lines; referees monitor game lines; and our conscience monitors lines in the game of life.
In spite of all the restrictions, there’s one line we’re encouraged to cross—the finish line.
I hope we’ll reach for our goals like “The Little Engine That Could.” Even in the face of what looked like an impossible task, the little train engine pulled with all his might. He kept telling himself, “I think I can,” until he’d get over the next hill and the next, until he reached his destination.
But in order to reach his goal, the little engine worked within his boundaries: He kept his wheels on the railroad tracks where he could best do his job. He kept his goal in sight, motivated to finish his task. He succeeded without looking for shortcuts.
May we all work and play within designated boundaries, finding success when we cross our own finish lines and reach our goals.
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