Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..

To Begin AgAin…………

To begin again. What would you do if you could start all over again? Think about it….to be able to erase the slate completely. Would you go into the same career? Marry the same person? Make the same decisions and choices you made before. What if everything from this moment on could be different and the past was erased and no longer mattered.


My pastor at mass announced this morning that he was leaving our church, and at 50 years old has decided to live a life of poverty as a Franciscan priest. In many ways I envy him. He ended his homily with something to the effect that “everything in our lives up until this moment doesn’t really matter – it’s what we do from this point on that truly counts”. My past has been a mixture of ups and downs, hills and valley’s, good times and bad, stupid choices, some good outcomes, painful mistakes, euphoric moments, joys and sorrows, and lots of mediocrity in between.

I’m feeling called (pulled) to make some drastic changes, to take some real risks with the final stages of my life’s journey. I’ve been playing it safe for way to long. Sure, I have a viable and challenging career, nice home, two great kids, membership at the local country club and a low maintenance parakeet, BUT I’m still feeling absolutely EMPTY inside and the sermon today hit a nerve with me – tapped into something I have been wanting to do for the past few years. Making money doesn’t matter to me at all – the only reason I work so hard and put in so many hours freelance online teaching is to provide for my two children. I don’t have many material needs, don’t require a lot – just a simple abode, some food and a quite place to think, pray, write and occasionally make some art.


There is no doubt I’m at a crossroads – a transitional point in my life – I’m not one to accept status quo. So…with all this said, what’s the next step?

God is calling, but I still don’t have clarity – I have a son (Adam) in Argentina and a daughter (Andei) in Sicily, YET…. – I can’t quit work,, BUT I can retire and still be able to provide for my family if my financial needs are minimal. That is where I am now…I’m beginning to accept (and look forward to) living a life of solitude, poverty and isolation mixed in with travel, writing, prayer, art and God knows what else.

To begin again… sounds like a plan.


7 comments on “To Begin AgAin…………

  1. Rob Robinson
    March 11, 2007

    Wow, I know your feeling. Sometimes God finds the most unique ways of waking us up and speaking to us. Sometimes it is through the voice of you own child; sometimes it is through a friend, and sometimes it is through an adversity you didn’t see coming. What is important is that you stay in constant contact with God through prayer and keep you eyes open for the path that he has set for you.

    A few years ago, God spoke to me in a way I never thought could happen. He broke me. He helped me reassess my priorities. But through it all, He made sure He made His presence known in everything and in everyone that stepped foot in my life from that moment on. Some doors were closed, but others were thrown wide open. Opportunities for a new life lived for Him couldn’t be denied. The unquestionable hand of God was upon me. I haven’t been the same since. Everyday is a new discovery through Him.

    What is difficult is trying to interpret God’s will without letting our own selfishness worldly desires influence what He has set for us. It is challenging. It is scary to give up that control. It goes against everything that world has taught us.

    Here are a few verses that I carry in my wallet. They have come up several times during important stages in my life. Maybe they will speak to you as they have for me.

    Hebrews 10: 19-25
    19 Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

    I hope I really get the opportunity to talk with you this week. It sounds like we could share some really interesting thoughts- professionally, personally, and spiritually. Until then, God bless you.

  2. keoughp
    March 12, 2007

    Thanks for the sincere and thoughtful response to my latest blog entry Rob, seems like God breaks me down on a regular basis – at least for the past 20 years. I think he is trying to tell me something – I especially appreciate the verses. Yes…do touch base with me sometime this week and yes…I am sure we could share insights on a variety of levels.

    Bless you as well


  3. jpoletti
    March 13, 2007


    Father Bill’s announcement was a bit of a stunner. He is clearly on a mission from God, and his move to the Bronx will mean more change for our church at the cozy coast.

    It’s funny. You and I talk much about all the changes with New Media and what it can mean for teaching and learning. We are all about some change in education. We find that mission to be an adventure, a calling, and it is invigorating.

    The same must be true with our spiritual and personal lives. They need to be shaken up on occasion as well.

    In a world of increasingly complex and unpredictable change—of which far too many people are still unaware and unprepared—I find Sunday mass to be a bedrock, something that still makes perfect sense and harmony.

    But I know there is something more…

    BTW, you and I need to meet soon to plan our Audacity piece. I have all my group at a conference and they will here Web 2.0 icon Will Richardson today.

    Peace, my brother,


  4. K. Flanagan
    November 29, 2007

    I think it very well may be time to reform the Royal Roachman, or you could just chuck it all and go into the “general cleanup business” and there is always a great demand for tour guides who can promise -“you never know where you’ll end up”.

    But I’m not at all concerned, I know you’ll end up in a sweet spot, love ya Bro!

  5. mary faye
    December 6, 2007

    at our age,we certainly have each,met our destiny i guess..and have had wonderful children and each person,lives their life,and some need change and wonder what they should do.others stay in the same spot and are happy.
    it could be called contentment..usually if one has to keep moving and GOING….their spirit is not settled.although,you have had ups and downs,as we all have ,you have not experienced real pain,as in someone close,dying…it WILL happen..BUT it can make you stronger and although sadden your heart,it keeps you REAL..i could go on and on..but i do what you need to do,but happiness isnt something you keep searching for.rather, it is there,or is a great way,to put all thoses feelings down and my daughter is like that..usually people withmany feelings,are great artists…usually,ambivelant feelings.
    hey..i may have someone for you,to correspond with.i have to see if she is willing,and if she has her computer at home.she is a nurse.and a good friend.shes also italian!.wonderful person looking for a companion.she also has 2 grown children.
    well, i am quite tired see ya!!mary

  6. mary faye
    December 6, 2007

    hey also..i have enjoyed your website alot!!!!!!its awesome!i will write from day to day or week to week…when i can..tara will enjoy it as well i need to show her.

  7. mary f.obrien
    February 21, 2008

    try to just enjoy the moments..cant talk about the sunset..or you will miss it!!watch it,comsume it in your heart..that is living.something beautiful,that God has made,for us to watch..its that simple!!and of course,as we please God each day,everything else will work out.if you pray,and talk with God each day,you wont ever feel empty.!!

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This entry was posted on March 11, 2007 by in Keough Journal.
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