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Chef Otto

Chef, Author, Speaker, Humanitarian.
Taste the Freedom!


Twenty twenty, whenever I see or hear that repetitive numerical phrase, visual acuity comes to mind. The clarity or sharpness of vision. The Snellen chart, created by Dutch ophthalmologist Herman Snellen in 1862. The classic eye chart you see in the office of an optometrist determines what level of vision you have. The Snellen chart has 11 lines of block letters. The first line is simply one large letter, such as E, H, or N. Successive rows have increasing amounts of letters that decrease in size. Normal vision is 20/20. It simply means you can read a specific line on the chart at the distance of 20 feet. It is the minimum requirement for pilots, one can read stock quotes in the newspaper with 20/20 vision. Whereas, 20/40 is the minimum standard to pass a driver’s license in all 50 states. An individual with 20/200 vision is legally blind. A person with 20/15 vision can see objects at 20 feet that a person with 20/20 vision can only see at 15 feet.  

While our physical vision is important, our spiritual vision is equally so. For we walk by faith, not by sight. Proverbs 29:18 states:  Where there is no vision, the people perish. I’ve never been one for new year resolutions. I’d rather pause as the previous year winds down in reflection. What were my goals? What did I accomplish? What did I learn in 2019? How can I take those lessons and apply that to living my best life in 2020? It’s good to glance in the rear view mirror and look back, but don’t stay there. That’s why the windshield is so much larger than the rear view mirror. What is in the past, is just that. Learn from it, but don’t dwell on it. People living in the past, shoulda, woulda, coulda, are simply shells of themselves. They are not living a life of purpose. I am reminded by the line in Shawshank Redemption. When Andy Dufresne, played by Tim Robbins advises “Red” Redding, played by Morgan Freeman. “Get busy living or get busy dying.” For Andy, this is the mantra that keeps him going inside Shawshank Prison.  

We all need to be reminded of our past, but we needn’t live there. I think major or traumatic events of the past as scars. Scars make us beautiful; they expose our humanity. More importantly, one big reason for those scars is to tell your story to others who are now going through the battles you fought, and survived. It transforms the fear and uncertainty you experienced and develops you into a richly compassionate soul in the process.  Your story may not have been for you at all, but for some other soul, who perhaps was not as spiritually, mentally, or physically fit as you were. You survived, so others may thrive. To encourage, inspire and empower others. To offer a kind word, a ray of hope, a promise of a better tomorrow

We are on Earth for such a short time, yet I like to call the first 40 years of life, research. It takes time to become the best version of yourself.  What is important is to keep doing research after those 40 years. So many get to a point in their life, it’s the dreaded C word, complacent. They are neither living nor dying. Walking through life in a self-imposed prison. Simply existing, otherwise known as a living hell.  

What is your vision for 2020? Are you in focus for your goals? Or are you blurred by an obsolete Texaco road map? Are you dialed in with laser accuracy? Utilizing GPS, God’s Perfect System. If God is your co-pilot, move over. Let Him take the wheel. It is inevitably a smoother ride. Buckle up, He never promised an easy ride. But he did promise he will never leave or forsake you. In a world full of uncertainty, be encouraged by God’s grace and mercy. May you enjoy continued success and blessings in abundance. Wishing you all the best in 2020.   

Taste the Freedom.

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