Over the past year in our monthly interpreter meetings (every first Thursday of the month), we have been studying personal growth and dealing with loss and setbacks. We’ve covered a lot of topics, from cultivating humility to seeking improvement to enduring bad experiences to embracing change in our lives, but in our final lesson in this series, we addressed the value of all this: Maturity.
We defined maturity as the value of learning and personal growth. It means being where you need to be, doing what you’re supposed to be doing, no matter how you feel about it. Even when it’s hard, even when it’s time consuming. To take a quote from the lesson: “We don’t always have to feel good about doing good, so we must always be doing good till it feels good!”
Closely related to this is the willingness to sacrifice: the result of learning to sacrifice today is success tomorrow. The man who never sacrifices anything never belongs to himself, but rather to whatever he is unwilling to sacrifice.
And this gets at the heart of what we’ve studied over the past year. When we humble ourselves seek to improve ourselves in adversity, leveraging our mistakes and failures into learning experiences that teach us how to succeed, we will advance in life. And that takes sacrifice: time, and effort, and resources. It sometimes blows up in our faces. But maturity means that we don’t let those setbacks define us, and we don’t let it convince us to stop trying. We grow into the kind of people that see problems as opportunities rather than roadblocks. We become the kind of people who can teach others, and mentor those who are going the problems we’ve already overcome. We become people who better others through bettering ourselves, and in the end, that’s what it’s all about.