What makes me feel alive

Mexico 2005 on the mountaintopOne thing that made me feel alive recently was composing a song on the piano. A few months ago when I did this I had a big smile I just couldn’t wipe off my face. Not because I’m anywhere near a talented composer but because of the “poo” effect.

You see, one of the most poignant things I’ve ever heard came from my cousin Stan as he quoted recording artist Brooke Fraser from a workshop he attended.

She said, “Writing a song is like taking a good poo.”

And what I gather she means is that getting there takes a lot of grunting and distress and discomfort. But once it’s done, the sense of refreshing and relief last for hours.

And with my song I felt that way. That sense of being fulfilled by creating something.

I was born to create. You were born to create. We are dying a slow death if we don’t create.

For me, opportunities to express myself — talking, writing, singing, performing, painting, teaching, connecting — make me feel alive.

Another feel-alive moment:

When I was 23 and visiting India with my parents, we spent a day with friends who were visiting a village in Tamil Nadu and sharing the gospel. It was fast turning dark as I hopped out of the van. A crowd of kids gathered around me in excitement. I spoke to them in broken Malayalam as they spoke to me in Tamil. And somehow we understood each other. In a matter of seconds we bonded.

tamil crowd

smiles and questions and getting to know each other

tamil kids

The kid to my right asked me why I was wearing jeans, since only boys wear jeans. lol

And I felt alive.

I felt…this is what I what I was born to do.

There’s just something about a new environment and experiencing a relationship with people. Getting out of your small world and living life and loving people.

I believe pursuing relationships is also a way of creating. Conversations with and new understandings about people can breathe new life into us.

My new year’s resolution this year is to feel alive again.

Just emptying my bucket of thoughts…

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