Life: From ‘Black and White’ To Gray!


A few years ago as I renewed my driver’s license I had to put down my hair color on the application.  I instinctively wrote down ‘brown.” Then in a moment of clarity, I thought, “Who am I fooling?” I crossed out “brown” and replaced it with “gray.” When I received my new license (why do they always look like mug shots?), there next to eye color of “blue” was hair color “gray.” Now every time I show my ID I am reminded of my newly publicized gray head of hair. With the graying of my hair has also come the recognition that life, which once was so “black and white” when I was young, is now many shades of gray.

When I was young I often found myself making judgments about others, their lives and decisions. I often saw things as right or wrong, true or false, or smart of dumb. And some things are completely that way, but what I have learned as my hair has turned gray, is that much of life falls somewhere between the black and white of right and wrong, true or false, and certainly between smart and dumb decisions.

In fact, if you examine the life of the Savior you will find that he was constantly being questioned as to the propriety of his decisions. He was constantly being challenged as to the ‘right or wrong’ of his life. He was questioned by his peers as to his Sabbath day observance (Mark 2), his power to heal (Matthew 9), his parentage (Mark 6), as well as many other things about how he was living his life. I’m sure that after he was crucified, many thought, “What a foolish man. In the end he died on the cross because of his decisions. His life was a waste!” We know how wrong they all were on that point!

I am no longer the ‘smart and brilliant’ young man I thought I was. Truth be told, I never was! As my hair has turned gray so has my outlook on life. I no longer see things as ‘black and white’ because, like many of you, I have been presented over the years with so many situations that have driven me to my knees seeking divine guidance regarding decisions that don’t seem to fit into the “Sunday School” answers we are taught. What I have discovered is that I desperately need heavenly influence in my life because there is no manual I can go to that will give me the wisdom to handle the unique decisions that are  daily being presented to me.  If there is anything that the ‘graying’ of my life has taught me, it’s the need I have for divine guidance in my life from a Father above!

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