“A gentle word, a kind look, a good-natured smile can work wonders and accomplish miracles.” – William Hazlitt
I walked into the living room this morning and Lily was sitting in the recliner with a “what’s up” look. She lightened the moment and I just started laughing. The only way to start the day. Every day Lily and Molly bring a new attitude with a focus on fun, present and living right in the moment of joy.
“Stop a minute, right where you are. Relax your shoulders, shake your head and spine like a dog shaking off cold water. Tell that imperious voice in your head to be still.” – Barbara Kingsolver
There are signs and wonders all around us if we tune in and listen. A jolt back into what’s real and true, well beyond all of the dissent and distractions.
Last Saturday when I was walking in a daze through the grocery store in my running clothes and my hair pulled back, a deaf woman stopped me. I thought she would ask for help to find something. She looked me in the eyes and mouthed while her hand circled her face, “you are beautiful” and walked away.
To say the least, I was taken back. I certainly didn’t feel beautiful. This blessed encounter has stayed with me deeply since that moment, a reminder to release our inner beauty and draw it out in others.
Sometimes we are the receiver of signs and wonders and sometimes we are called to be the signs and wonders to others. Our higher power (I prefer God), our true self walks right into our day and makes it so very much more than ordinary.
A word, look, smile – change a day, change a life.
“Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvelous.” – Bill Moyers
Enter today eager to create, transform, inspire. In turn, be ready to be created, transformed and inspired. All that is present this very moment longs and waits to be found with simple curiosity and childlike wonder.
Push beyond the mechanical motions, comfortable habits and seemingly mundane. Demand more of yourself. We are called to dive deep into the marvelous center of now. Learn, teach, learn again, every day. Create and be created. Cast light and the marvelous is revealed.
“Sometimes I go about with pity for myself and all the while Great Winds are carrying me across the sky.” – Ojibway saying
On the days that don’t make sense, the ones that chip away at our core, rather our ego, we are being broken and remolded for something new. A slow releasing of what’s not important anymore, the arm wrestle of growth, a series of letting goes.
And in those moments of the mundane, we can let feelings and moods rise to the top and move through them to finish what’s been started. And in the midst of the dry days, the hollow is transforming into the hallowed. Faith holds our hand to the other side and gratitude shines the light of what is ours here and now.
Flowers bloom. The sun rises. Easter always comes.
“Delight, plumps and widens our joy. She lives in all of us. She’s a precious gift to the soul that connects us back to God as our original playmate. She tickles our frozen places and frees us to laughter, exuberance, simplicity, and spontaneous moments that extract the essence of the True Self from deep inside.” – Sue Monk Kidd, When the Heart Waits
That yearning deep inside is the self that we have resigned ourselves to accept through others expectations, our own disappointments, unanswered whys and unexpected paths trying to align with our True Self, the one we are called to become, sooner rather than later. And instead of prying it out or worse yet ignoring it, we can gently release our True Self through simple delight in each day.
Our days are meant to be so much deeper, lighter, and expansive than we allow ourselves to expect or imagine. We get distracted and frozen with indecision and excuses to remain for at least it’s predictable and seemingly safe. Yet the yearning continues, not to be quieted until alignment is achieved.
Take the first step into the water and discover the ocean. Move and flow with your own current, not others. Love first and be loved. Go last and be first. Wait and grow. And amidst all of the chaos, with certain clarity and a trusting heart, invite your True Self out to play.
“Whoever is happy will make others happy too.” – Anne Frank
“Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.” – Omar Khayyam
We celebrated Lily’s 5th birthday today. Or from her perspective, she’s celebrating 1825 days since she makes each and every one count. Make today, tomorrow and the next day count with enthusiasm, gratitude and generosity of spirit. Happy day.
“To live is to be slowly born.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
There’s a depth of wonder and awe in being slowly born and knowing it. Live grounded in joy, faith and hope knowing that your story continues to be written and you have the pen.
“Each day holds a surprise. But only if we expect it can we see, hear, or feel it when it comes to us. Let’s not be afraid to receive each day’s surprise, whether it comes to us as sorrow or as joy It will open a new place in our hearts, a place where we can welcome new friends and celebrate more fully our shared humanity.” – Henri Nouwen
When my mind strays too far ahead or lags behind staring the rear view mirror, I am brought back to the moment by a smile, a reminder to find joy in now.
Many of the best life lessons I’ve learned are from my dogs. How to smile, dance, gaze, enjoy, forget, forgive, be present, rest, play, be welcoming, encouraging and loving without conditions. Perhaps the reason that our dogs live such short lives is that they live each moment fully, without hesitation, assumption or judgment. Nothing is wasted or taken for granted.
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” – William Arthur Ward
A warm smile, a simple act, a kind word can change someone’s day, maybe even transform it. We have a tremendous opportunity, obligation, to make the world better by giving our best. Our world expands and deepens when we shift our focus off “me” outward to care and concern for others.
Expect more and accept what is now. Be surprised and delighted today. And get your smile on.
Underneath the cold and bitterness outside and within, there’s hope in the quiet of winter and sweetness in the anticipation of spring. A bud ready to burst through the frozen ground, the warmth of the sun grows stronger, as do we. The blur takes shape and clarity ensues. Underneath will rise, if we allow, trust and believe.
“God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars.” – Martin Luther
“And somehow the transformation you knew would never come, that impossible plumping of fresh life and revelation, does come. It manifests itself in unseen slowness. So it would happen to me and so it will happen to all who set out to knead their pain and wounds, their hopes and hungers, into bread. Waiting for the yeasting of the human soul.” – Sue Monk Kidd, When the Heart Waits
We rush and get busy to do something, anything to make the waiting seem less and go faster. But in the waiting, the quiet, if we listen and trust, we find ourselves yet again. And time is not wasted in the waiting. We are right in the middle of becoming who we are meant to be, molded by patience and grace.
We arrive and depart, become and transform again and again. Growing and wilting, blooming again with a depth of beauty that only comes with time. Wait in the waiting.
“It may look as if the situation is creating the suffering, but ultimately this is not so – your resistance is.” – Eckhart Tolle
“Many people are alive but don’t touch the miracle of being alive.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
Each day, a new door to go through, a step into the unknown, an unfamiliar path. Look no longer, hesitant on the edge of the threshold. Cross over and move through. What’s waiting can wait no longer.
For time does not wait, nor must we. Embrace each day and those that are put in our path for it is meant to be. Whether we know the reason or not, enjoy each moment for we will not pass this way again. The journey is meant to change us, ground us, find us, transform us to who we are. Discover the miracle of being alive, and live well.
“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.” – Joseph Campbell