We are safely down in Salem, MO, which will be our brief resting place before moving on down to Jackson, TN for a wedding that we are shooting for some good friends. It is nice to have some down time, which is why I am actually able to post twice in a 24 hour period.

I’m not a bigtime reader, at least of the printed word. Most of my reading is either something on-line, or from the Bible (but even that is quite frequently of the digital form, thanks to e-Sword). I have some things going on right now though that will require some reading, so I am trying to be proactive and get some of that reading done now while I have the time. My wonderful wife was kind enough to go to the library and try and find the books that I needed, of which they only had one, Who Moved my Cheese?

I had not read this book before, despite some others recommending it, and I wish that I had. It was very eye opening, especially considering all that is going on in our family right now. The book describes two mice and two ‘little people’ who are stuck in a maze, and find cheese. There seems to be an endless supply of cheese, so life is good for the four at this point in the story. Eventually, the cheese goes away. The mice do what they do best, sniff out new cheese. The little people sit around and throw a little pity party for themselves, blame the loss of cheese on others, and start to go hungry. One eventually wanders off in search of new cheese, the other stays, hoping someone else will fix the situation for him. The one who went out on the journey finally found the mice and the new cheese, and makes some interesting observations along the way about the whole situation. One of the observations was that the cheese had started to dry up long before it disappeared. It was starting to taste bad, get moldy, and there was less of it. There were signs that it was going away, the people were just too complacent to notice the change going on.

There are lots of little lessons that can be learned from this story, a few that hit particularly close to home. Summer and I have been married for almost 4 years, and I have been a resident of Columbia for almost 5 years. Our original plan was to stay in Columbia for about 5 years, which would have been up this December when Summer’s loan forgiveness was over. Since we had to pay part of the loan off early and we are officially debt free (except the house), including the work-for-forgiveness loan, the feelings of ‘where do we go now?’ are starting to come up. The cheese, to use the metaphor, is getting stale. I’m not sure if it is work, if it is Columbia, if it is that our best friends all live elsewhere (visiting Champaign twice in recent months has reminded at least me of that fact), or if it is a self fulfilling thing that started 5 years ago. Maybe it is that, even though it is a very fun and rewarding job, we are parents of one (almost two) about 2 years before we ‘planned’ on becoming parents (but oh how we have been blessed by making our plans change).

We don’t know what the future may hold for us. Maybe we stay in Columbia another 10 years. Maybe we go somewhere new and welcome the change of scenery. Wherever The Lord may decide for us to go, we trust that it will be somewhere that we can be used to help others. If we are exactly where we are today – same job, same house, etc – then maybe some other change is needed. And thats something that was talked about in the discussion at the end of the book – changing relationships, or at least changing the dynamics in existing relationships.

Next up on the reading list : QBQ, No More Mondays, The Go-Getter, and a few others.

So, has anyone else read this book and had their eyes opened to something that needed to change?