Sisters & Brothers,
Do you realize that the people in your life (co-workers, family, friends, etc) change and mold the person who you are today? Think about that for a few minutes. These influences could make you say "Add that to the don't want to be like that list" or they could slowly change you into a more organized person as an example.
I've been thinking a lot about this notion of transformation as of late. I myself can look back 6 months ago and how I was for the better part of the last decade or so a brooding, rain cloud kind of person (on the outside at least). For me, now grace is the center of everything for me and from which I operate. From that comes peace and love and if that touches you in some way, shape or form then my thoughts on transformation are correct.
Our ability to be influenced every so subtlety by those around us is incredible. I think to grasp this concept almost immediately makes you more aware of your actions on a day to day basis. Sure we may slip and have some bad moments here and there (we're human after all) but the goal should always to exude the person we want people to be. We should always be that tree that is always bearing fruit for people to enjoy. We've all got something to share with the world sometimes it just takes some sifting to find it and share it.
That quote, I hope, makes you really sit back and think about how you're living your day to day life. Even the quote I opened this letter with my sisters and brothers. To live is to have shared our lives with those around us. Allowing others to bathe in the light of our being and not a shadow of a storm cloud is really what we should be aiming for. Also, it's far easier to be happy and at peace than it is to continue to be angry and brooding over wrongs, our own misconceptions of how our lives should be, etc. The latter takes a whole lot of work to stay in the mindset where the former takes no work whatsoever if you embrace the grace within your heart every day.
I think a lot of us cling to things that we really shouldn't. If something is going to be a constant in your life stop clinging to it and just trust that it will always be there. Trust in your beliefs don't hold onto them so tight that you strangle them. Trying too hard to focus on transforming yourself or to be a good religious person is the first step to letting your ego take over and nothing good will ever come from that. Just embrace the subtle changes in your life, 1000 subtle changes equal a few big ones after a while. I myself didn't try at all when I embraced my faith again. I just let it happen and let the Lord take me where he wanted. I'd encourage you all to the do the same in some way.