a parable

Although we love certainty, and work to make our lives operate in such a way that we know what to expect next, we also conversely crave uncertainty. Another word for it is variety.

There was a gambler who died, and as he approached the pearly gates, he was amazed and ecstatic that he had made it to heaven! He was so delighted to see that heaven was as if it had been created just for him! There were roulette tables, blackjack, slot machines, showgirls…a real Monte Carlo. As he stepped up to place his bets he found his pockets full of cash. He placed a bet, and won. Another, and jackpot. Again and again he bet, and won. After some time had passed he began to feel not just bored, but really unhappy and dissatisfied. All the winning was great, but something felt off. He went up to St. Peter, “Hey Pete, I don’t know about this, I think I am over heaven. I want to go to hell instead.” St. Peter replied, “Sir, I am sorry to tell you, but this is hell.”

The ups and downs, the wins and losses, are the juice of life. Without failure we would not learn, without the night there would be no day. Remember the parable of the gambler as you work so diligently to make your world comfy and certain. I have a love and appreciation for my losses and the darker moments, because they help me see how blessed I truly am.