“Take a course in good water and air; and in the eternal youth of Nature you may renew your own. Go quietly, alone; no harm will befall you.” – John Muir
Reflection and remembering are the stepping stones on the path of gratitude and awe. A simple walk in the woods can transform our minds and surface our spirit. Rather than busily moving through time we become immersed in it, unaware of the clock and deep in the moment.
“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir
In quiet repose, we move from reaction and positioning to creation and mere being. Amidst the waving trees, in the rhythm of the stream, in the heart of the meadow, we are called to enter and join the sweet harmony of nature. Eternal youth flows uninhibited and free for the taking.
The gift of spring lies in the simultaneous joining of promise and fulfillment to create a beautiful symphony of fragrance that radiantly flows from the soft petals of glorious color. All is made whole again with the onset of spring.
I am reminded a childhood hymn:
“For the beauty of the earth
For the beauty of the skies
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies
Over and around us lies
Lord of all, to thee we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise
For the beauty of the hour
Of the day and of the night
Hill and vale and tree and flower
Sun and moon and stars of light
Sun and moon and stars of light
Lord of all, to thee we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise”
When praise is far from your thoughts and lips, remain quiet until you can hear, see and feel the symphony of spring. And when winter arrives as it surely does, remember the symphony of spring can remain in our heart, if we allow.
Spring-phony all around, hill and vale.
We live our days in moments, often unaware of how special each one is, and we mark our lives with milestones and transitions – birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, graduations and passings.
Today, my parents would have been married 58 years. See more on my parents in this post on their 53 years in 2012 on all that they taught me that remains this day, if not even stronger than ever before.
In 17 days, we mark the one year anniversary of my Dad passing away suddenly on April 28, 2016. The suddenly was good for him for sure, but not so much for us. We all still miss him every day and expect to the rest of our days. And the missing shows up in ordinary days, ordinary moments that we would have laughed about the same things or debated the topics of the day. It shows up in the first Christmas and the first Easter without him at the table.
So celebrate moments with those you love for those oh so ordinary moments will be what you most remember and cherish when they are no longer here. Forgive more, laugh harder, hug longer and be grateful for the many gifts that we all have that go unnoticed every day.
Happy 58th Anniversary Mom and Dad. Your commitment, perseverance, grit, faith and unconditional love transcends time and connects heaven and earth.
“Beauty is the only thing that time cannot harm. Philosophies fall away like sand, creeds follow one another, but what is beautiful is a joy for all seasons, a possession for all eternity.” – Oscar Wilde
Seeds hibernate to survive winter. Dormant, in waiting, quietly preparing for the ground to warm to break through to take in the light. Time passes, the sun lingers longer and the soothing rains turn the frozen ground soft. Soon the sleeping seeds awaken, unfold and diligently work their way through the crusted ground, revealing the miracle of life reborn yet again.
“Expect to have hope rekindled. Expect your prayers to be answered in wondrous ways. The dry seasons in life do not last. The spring rains will come again.” – Sarah Ban Breathnach
The seeds achieve their potential, rejoicing in brilliant color and delicate texture. Strong enough to survive winter and fragile enough to show their depth of beauty. Seasons change on cue, the cycle continues, the struggle of transformation fades and the joy of fruition takes its rightful place.
Cycles, seasons and life ensue.
“Easter is meant to be a symbol of hope, renewal, and new life.” – Janine di Giovanni
We are called to carry to the joy of Easter Sunday into Monday, Tuesday and each day to come thereafter. More than a day, it is a way to live, to be transformed. A chance to begin again, to accept grace that is given freely and generously.
Do not succumb to despair. Allow yourself to change and be changed.
Kids and dogs breathe in and breathe out joy naturally, without hesitation. Wide-eyed and unassuming, they accept and release abundance to all who are open and willing to take it in. Loving without condition, they give depth and dimension to an often obtuse world.
Happy Easter Monday, and Tuesday and Wednesday…
“God loves each of us as if there were only one of us. “ – Saint Augustine
“Faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into the light.” Helen Keller
Darkness hovers, to overwhelm and crush. But light remains, breaks through and triumphs. Three days – from 30 silver coins, despair and denial to hope and deep, everlasting love. Easter returns again and again, never to be defeated.
Be drawn and pulled into the Light. Love always wins. The gravity of it all.
“We are told to let our light shine, and if it does, we won’t need to tell anybody it does. Lighthouses don’t fire cannons to call attention to their shining – they just shine.” – Dwight L. Moody
“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” – John Muir
We’ve had the taste of an early spring in Minnesota, sixty degree days in March. Last week while taking Lily for a walk, we went into the woods. We haven’t been up there in a while. The brush had been cleared and it looked so different, new. The light came through the trees with ease.
“Sadly, it’s much easier to create a desert than a forest.” – James Lovelock
I have been on vacation for the past week. Some time at home with the girls and a quick trip with family. Vacation has a way of clearing the brush. The dried sticks of urgency, multi-tasking and rushing are put aside long enough for a new perspective to enter.
And if take time each day to hang onto that new perspective and “schedule” in unscheduled time, we can keep the brush from building back up again. Clear the brush and keep the path open so the light of each day can enter with ease.
“A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.” – Mahatma Gandhi
May the hope, love, mercy, forgiveness, redemption and resurrection of Easter permeate your soul and free your spirit today and every day. Partake in the awe and wonder freely given. Each day offers a new beginning, a fresh start, a second, third and fourth chance.
“The True Self is not our creation, but God’s. It is the self we are in our depths. It is our capacity for divinity and transcendence.” – Sue Monk Kidd
Say YES! to that still, soft, persistent voice calling you to your True Self. Let your light shine brightly, breaking the darkness.
Grace, joy and light – Happy Easter.
“I have become sure that if all I know about God is that my God is the fullness of life and the consummation of hope, the light on the way and the light at the end, then I will live my life in the consciousness of God and goodness everywhere, obscure at times, perhaps, but never wholly lacking.” – Joan Chittister
If left to our own understanding, many days, some people and the crosses that we each bear don’t make any sense. This Holy Week that starts with palms and celebration moves rapidly to betrayal, desertion, denial and unimaginable suffering. Three days later, despair transforms through resurrection. Light overcomes dark. Always.
And through all of our trials, should we dare to have the faith to believe, we discover and capture a peace that passes all understanding.
This week is ultimately about love, without condition in its highest form, showing us the way through the valleys and the mountains. On the cusp of Easter, go deeper, stay longer and find that peace.
“Life is one big transition.” – Willie Stargell
Not still winter yet not quite spring.
On the edge.
The grip of winter slowly releases allowing hints of spring to appear.
Moments gather to days and transition time prepares us for transformation.
Releasing what was for what is to be, to the new, the next.
The sun and the rain do their job melting the ice’s resolve.
Blue breaks through the white and the frozen evolves into water.
Gently giving way for the next season.
That which occurs does so in the right time.
Not hurried, prodded or pushed.
In due time, not our time.