Perceptive Prisons

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“Some prisons don’t require bars to keep people locked inside. All it takes is their perception that they belong there. A soul who believes she can’t leave… doesn’t.”  ~Lysa TerKeurst


I just got home from the Taste of Home cooking show. My alma mater high school auditorium was filled with a passel of folks (average age 62-years-old), kitchen appliances, and a perky gal in purple serving up a dozen dishes.


Despite being confused about whether the appropriate behavior would be to duck my head as I walked by the principal’s office or break out into a noisy rendition of the fight song, I enjoyed the evening. Since I currently have about 150 lbs. of pork in our deep freeze, I’m deeply appreciative of the pork recipes in the free magazine they gave us! (The pork people sponsored the tour… and I’m open to any recipes from you, I need help!)


Being in my old high school did make me think about how I’ve “turned out.” Like pretty much any small town across America, the hallowed halls of the high school have been filled with students who are “successful” and those who “got stuck.”


(One of my classmates helped run the Olympic Torch this year… another has spent some time wearing bright orange and handcuffs.)


Ms. Perky Purple on the stage was well-traveled and articulate as she cracked jokes and sautéed sirloin. Her helper was a local gal, a lanky woman who, while sweet, was awkward in her high heels and sporting a hairstyle complete with feathered bangs.


It made me think about the prisons we willingly enter… the decisions we make not to leave our hometown because we can’t imagine “making it” anywhere else versus choosing to live in our hometown because it’s where our heart belongs.


By visiting my old stomping grounds, I realized I can give my children a great gift by instilling confidence in them that they can succeed with or without me living right down the street. By exposing them to various experiences, conversations, and philosophies as adults they will discover they hold keys to their self-imposed prisons… and the limiting doors will open.


I’m so grateful for the community I grew up within. I’m privileged that I left and explored the world physically and intellectually. I’m hopeful our decision to move back as adults and raise our children here will be beneficial.


What prisons have you locked yourself into unintentionally? 



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