“Throughout our lives, God’s grace bestows temporal blessings and spiritual gifts that magnify our abilities and enrich our lives. His grace refines us. His grace helps us become our best selves.” – Dieter F. Uchtdorf
“There is that incessantly gnawing loneliness that leaves us ever-restless, eventually driving us to embark upon some endless journey supposing that whatever would fill us is held in some hidden treasure that lays silently buried in a yet undiscovered place. Yet, it would do us well to understand that this loneliness is no more and no less than the image of the infinite God ever-stirring within us and all the while begging to be unleashed.”― Craig D. Lounsbrough
Loosen the binds and bonds of ego, worry, restlessness.
Enter the space of spirit, soul, being.
Always present, waiting to be found, seen, experienced.
Seek, find and be found.
Listen for the whisper, the call.
Here for a purpose, hear on purpose.
Inquire, discern, reflect, respond.
Salt, light, color.
Bless the world with your best imperfect, flawed, beautiful self.
“Christ has no body now but yours
No hands, no feet on earth but yours
Yours are the eyes that look
Compassion on the world
Yours are the feet that walk to do good
Yours are the hands that bless all the world.” – St. Theresa of Aliva
In the rushing, where are you going?
What are you running from and to?
What are you missing now front and center?
Reside and dwell.
Someday, if, when.
False destinations that steal our today.
If blessings available now are unseen, when, how, where will you recognize them?
Enough and overflowing.
In the mess, in difficulty, in scarcity, goodness, abundance and depth reside as well.
Discernment, clarity, awakening in inquiry, observation and listening.
Reside and dwell.
The gift of winter.
Quite, harsh, softness, beauty, peace, wrestling, restoration, preparation, patience, dormancy to unbind, unravel, unfold, cocoon, hibernate, set root.
The precursor to new, to breaking soil, to bud, to bloom, to spring.
Reside and dwell.
Seasons, cycles and circles.
Lessons, letting go, taking hold, tipping points, transformation.
Beginnings, middles and ends. To begin again.
Reside and dwell.
“Deep within man dwell those slumbering powers; powers that would astonish him, that he never dreamed of possessing; forces that would revolutionize his life if aroused and put into action.” – Orison Swett Marden
“Nature is the direct expression of the divine imagination.” – John O’Donohue
“May you realize that the shape of your soul is unique, that you have a special destiny here, that behind the facade of your life there is something beautiful, good, and eternal happening. May you learn to see yourself with the same delight, pride, and expectation with which God sees you in every moment.” – John O’Donohue
Steeped and anchored.
Free, defying gravity.
Dancing and poetry.
Grounding and embracing.
Knowing and mystery.
Wide and deep.
Intuition and clarity.
Beyond, above, below and all encompassing.
May you enter your soul space daily to rest in awe, held in delight.
The heart of your purpose and beauty of your being.
Defined by God, not others or self.
Never confine or define God on human terms.
Too too small.
The expanse of the sky, the depth of the ocean. Perhaps, yet still so much more.
Undefinable and familiar at the same time.
Accept the unknowing and enter the expanse.
Beauty. Goodness. Shelter.
“All through your life your soul takes care of you…your soul is alive and awakened, gathering, sheltering and guiding your ways and days in the world. In effect, your soul is your secret shelter.” – John O’Donohue
“Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”― Herman Hesse
“Abundance is not something we acquire. It is something we tune into.” – W Wayne Dyer
Enjoy this day.
This one alone.
Get out and expand your view.
Tune in and listen to that still small voice.
The whisper, the longing, the song.
Walk lightly and aware.
Capture and cast light.
“I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.” – George Washington Carver
“The Lord is my shepherd, shall not want; he makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” – Psalm 23
“So much of our lives takes place in our heads – in memory or imagination, in speculation or interpretation – that sometimes I feel that I can change my life by changing the way I look at it.”― Pico Iyer, The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere
In memory and imagination;
In speculation and interpretation;
In thoughts and words;
In stillness and observation;
Pause and let still waters, still and fill your soul;
To feel the expanse, depth and richness of life;
To shift your view to see the same differently;
Sit still and allow stillness to take you on an adventure to yourself.
Slow. Attention. Stillness.
“In an age of speed, I began to think, nothing could be more invigorating than going slow. In an age of distraction, nothing can feel more luxurious than paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is more urgent than sitting still.”― Pico Iyer, The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere
“God is the place where I do not remember the rest.” – Joseph Joubert
A BLESSING FOR BEING HUMAN
“Blessed are we, living in this small space, in these bodies we now inhabit, within the walls of circumstance, in these short years and finite strength, and with these eyes that see only so far. We are fragile, contingent beings.
Yet blessed are we, recognizing that it is our limits as well as our gifts that can shape the natural contours of what is possible, that guide us to what is ours to do.
Blessed are we when it is not our greatness that speaks, but our littleness. For it is our vulnerability that is the truest thing about us, the place where mutual connection is possible, where competition ends and community begins.
And oh how blessed are we in our fragility and dependence and brokenness, knowing that You, O God, hold all things together. There is no cure for being human…but for each other, we are all good medicine.” – Kate Bowler
May you be blessed today and each day with awareness and gratitude for the gift of being human and the grace of God in the midst of all of it.
“Great thoughts come from the heart.” – Luc de Clapiers
Take a break from swirling thoughts and think with your heart today.
Filter through empathy, connection and acceptance.
Lay down the chains of opinion and assumption long enough to allow fresh thoughts in.
Build, expand and grow.
Be receptive, moved, transformed.
See what is right in front of you only visible through the heart.
“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”― John Muir
“In our mediocrity and distraction, we forget that we are privileged to live in a wondrous universe.”— John O’Donohue
When you cannot see the forest for the trees, step back and observe the forest, the entire picture, the full journey. Uncover the narrative you’ve come to believe. Fiction or nonfiction? When too close to opinions, assumption and criticism, step back and find the connection between self and others. We are more alike than different. Humans, carrying stories that confine and constrict, trying to figure out the ending and missing the journey in the process. Joy can exist separate from circumstances and is rooted in gratitude.
Find the sacred in this day, found within. Be gentle and others. Kindness and peace to you today and each day that follows. Enter the sanctuary of the trees to be brought back to the fundamental and holiness of living daily. Clarity found in quiet. Ease found in pause. Gratitude found in seeing both the forest and the trees.
“Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured…
Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.
A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.
A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.
When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent. You are anxious because your path leads away from mother and home. But every step and every day lead you back again to the mother. Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.” – Herman Hess, Bäume. Betrachtungen und Gedichte
“You should belong first in your own interiority.”— John O’Donohue
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”― Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Tend to the narratives you tell yourself, what you’ve come to believe.
Is it familiar, flat and stale?
Does it serve your growth, healing, transformation?
Unlearn, relearn, learn.
Choose a different story line.
Change the arc.
Expansion over contraction.
Knowing in the unknowing.
Depth and dimension.
Salt and light.
Becoming through unbecoming.
Listen, write, rewrite.
The first draft is never the final draft.
Edit and hone.
Keep writing your story each day.
“What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wish I’d realized it sooner.” – Colette
“I drank the silence of God from a spring in the woods.” – Georg Trakl
“At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards,
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.”― T.S. Eliot
Stand still in body, mind and spirit
From the hustle and hurry of somewhere else
Allow ease in from quiet reflection
To the awareness that somewhere, some day is now
Pause long enough to see blessings already present
If gifts available in this moment are unseen, how will you ever recognize more?
Depth rather than shallow width
Stop counting and start receiving what is
Abundance beyond measure
Separate your being from circumstances so as not to be bound by them
Let gratitude, awareness and attention be your guide
Go from doing to accepting, to acknowledging, to praise
Receive, accept, absorb
Close your eyes, create still points and simply say “thank you”
“So Joseph stored up the grain in such abundance-like the sand of the sea-that he stopped measuring it; it was beyond measure.”-Genesis 41:49