Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Ambition is a Virtue?

When did people stop thinking of ambition as a sin and start thinking of it as a virtue?

This was a quote from a movie we watched last night, "The Other Boleyn Girl." I have struggled with ambition my entire life. In fact, I was raised to believe that if I wasn't ambitious, then I was lazy. And lazy was a sin! I would cram all sorts of activities and sports and social outings into my schedule. I never had time to breathe or think.

That belief system was only fueled more once I entered into my career. It was because of this ambition, I wasn't able to enjoy being a woman or being pregnant. Anything that slowed me down was not an asset but a liability. Being pregnant brought along morning sickness and big frumpy clothes. This only put my once fast track career path on a slow detour. I had my eyes on the prize and pregnancy did not become me. The prized package I had my focus fixed upon was filled with nice designer clothes, hot of the racks, designer purses and vacations to places that some people couldn't pronounce, new clients with the top 100 Fortune 500 companies and invitations to the hottest weddings and fund raisers. I believed that to achieve one of these items from this wish list, you had to have all of the items.

I never quite achieved those extravagances. God had another plan for me. He loaned me two beautiful children. He allowed me to name them Sienna and Sarah but he created each hair on their heads and hand crafted the very nature and laughter of both. Both girls are high spirited with bouncy blonde hair and bright blue eyes that can see the bottom of my soul. They are both on the autism spectrum and they raise the bar when it comes to being challenged as a parent. They slow me down. They force me to have true friends who are ever accepting. They remind me that love from the heart is greater than the clothes on our backs. They teach me new things every day about what is important in life.

They have changed my value system that I had clung onto since I was born until they were born. They have made me realize that ambition is not a virtue. I now strive for the fruit of the spirit which I believe are the truest of all virtues. These are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. I want them to bear the fruit in their lives so I am forced to bear these fruits in our home. These virtues do not come easy for me. I was not raised to understand the fruit of the spirit although that is what I truly hungered for as a child. And today as a mother, my ambition is now to slow down and consider the fruit as the prize and legacy to pass down to my children.


Jennae @ Green Your Decor said...

I definitely understand why you would feel that way, but I think ambition can be a virtue if it is carefully moderated. It can't be allowed to overtake the more important things, like our families. But there's no reason you can't be ambitious.

Jyl @ MommyGossip said...

I think this is a beautiful post. I didn't take it to mean that ambition is horrible and should be shunned at all costs. I got that it doesn't have to be ALL about ambition, that life can also include the gentler, more peaceful qualities of those very names. And, really, what is the legacy we want to pass on? I, too, struggle with this. I am definitely a more ambitious natured person. My husband is the opposite and has shown me that you can still have success while at the same time being a joyful, loving, peaceful person.

Cathy said...

It's a beautiful post indeed.

I'm still wishing for a lot of things in my life and hoping it will be better but I then I take a pause and realize that I have two of the most beautiful people that brings so much joy and peace to me that no material can ever surpass.

Thanks for the wonderful post.

mrsbear said...

That was a beautiful post. It's not so much an attack on ambition as it is a change of perspective and priority, there are some lovely revelations in there. Thanks for sharing that.

QuietMom said...

Wow - this is a powerful post! Thanks for sharing your heart!