Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Expressions of Love

  Oh, but how life can have its way with you. Pitching a variety of gusty challenges from the mound at a hundred miles an hour. Some suggest the secret to success is to take a stance and swing at the good stuff. Make contact, draw or strike, this is life.  But what do you do when you always seem to strike out?  What happens when you feel you are loosing? What then, when simply showing up isn't enough? When you are sure that you have nothing left and you fear you are drowning, you get right back up on your feet, dust yourself off and make a decision to give it everything you've got.  Decide to be all in.

   I have been really struggling and falling back into old destructive patterns at a rapid pace.  I found myself frantic, desperately sifting through the tools that I know I can rely on to keep me on track.  The things that usually keep me centered and healthy seemed to be just out of reach. I found myself in the eye of a storm of chaos.  I was having difficulty seeing outside of this old and unwanted familiar cycle I was being sucked back into.  A backdraft of negativity seemed to be closing in on me.  I have been praying non-stop.  Surrendering, only to surrender again. And it hit me today while I was driving.  I glanced over at a grown man smiling and laughing and rolling on the grass with his dog. And just like that, I was drawn into their moment. A stolen glimpse of pure love.  And that was it!  I knew that my mission for this day was to find expressions of love. Stay on task and dig deep. Expressions of love is love in action and it is EVERYWHERE.  Once I shifted my focus and opened my eyes, my heart followed.  I saw friends walking and laughing. I witnessed a man watching the sunset. I felt gratitude for the love from a patient friend and time offered to me from my sister.  I listened to birds singing and I couldn't help but to laugh as church bells rang in the distance.   When it seems like all forces are working against you, love.  Love nourishes and feeds our soul. Love is medicine. Open your eyes and see it.  Pick it up. Ingest it.  Invest it. Trust in it. Believe in it.
 When all else fails look for love.  Then allow love into your life. It will flourish and see you through your darkest hour. Love will help you face your fiercest opponents.   Live life as though all you have is love and the people you share it with.  Make the choice to nourish these relationships and embrace loves wealth.  Let that curve ball stare you down, then laugh at its attempted manipulation. You are love. Love is stronger than darkness, stronger than personal will and when you rely on it, you will make contact every time. Know this and you become unsinkable, undefeated. Love, did you leave it on the field today?

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

The Incredible Lightness of Being

Life reminded me today of the heaviness of it all. As my prayer list began to swell, I found myself asking the big question, 'why'? Why must life get so heavy? Why do we carry the load of our burdens with us until the weight threatens obliteration? The answer was simple. Must it? When people I care for are hurting, I want to help. I want to fix the problem and take away the hurt, naturally. But our burdens do not make us broken. We each have our own heaviness that we must purge. At forty years old I assumed that growing pains were a thing of the past. But assumptions can be dangerously deceitful.  Perhaps there is something I can do. I have often used the line 'Be the light'. But today it shone upon me a new meaning. Perhaps I can help lighten a persons load. Take away some of the heaviness for them. Offer an honest ear, a smile, a laugh. Go for a walk. Meet for coffee. Don't attempt to fix someone or something that isn't actually broken. Remind the people in your life of the 'lightness' of being. I bet you will discover that your load will also feel a bit lighter.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Attic Dwelling

'When God closes a door, He opens a window'...

I have heard that phrase a thousand times (okay maybe nine hundred). Heck, I've thrown it out there myself with empathetic pats on the back. It wasn't until recently that I actually understood what this statement meant.  And do you know what I did?  I opened that window and dove for my life.

   I had been lost, stuck in the same hallway for some time. Now, I was at a point where I wasn't even noticing other doors let alone checking to open them. I had checked out. Huddled in the same 'hallway', in the same corner, staring at the same wall. Stillness. But not the good, peaceful BE'ing kind of stillness. The kind that closes in on you. A frightening hollow stillness that forces your eyes shut. The kind that makes you so afraid, you want to run and hide. But where? The long dark hallway was my space. It's the only place I felt I had come to know. Was there nothing left for me? No more doors? No thing. Fear had taken me by the hand and lead me further and further into my numbness.
But every so often there was a burning, a tingling soft subtle whisper that tugged at my soul...'wake up...Wake Up...WAKE UP!'
And there amid the darkness, the echo of my thoughts create an internal stirring.

  Clinging to nothingness to stay afloat is tricky. It is only a matter of time before you start to sink again. Mere moments before suffocation and panic set in. But sometimes that is all it takes. One moment. One quick glance. One rescue mission. One life 'guard'.
  Someone saw the stillness in me. They recognized the calm before my sinking and they reached out for me. They shed some light into the darkness of my corridor. They took my hand and started to walk with me. God plants these people in our lives. These life 'guards', life 'savers' walk among us...they are us!
  You and I, we have powers, power. Please, please take this to heart.  YOU have the ability to change the very course of a persons life. Take notice. And then take action.  Offer an ear, a thought, a hand, a new perspective. Open a window. Be the light.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Battle Damage

My son was painting his Lego mini figs today and came to me to proudly show me his work. He explained why some of the paint looked scratched and wore off...this particular soldier had battle damage beginning to wear on his armour. I can relate. These past couple of weeks have proven to be some of the most difficult of my life. I fear I am also showing some wear and battle damage. I am tired...completely spent even. Body, mind and soul are drained. I am physically, mentally and emotionally raw. I feel completely turned inside out. My whole being is so drained I can't even fake it. My battle damage is exposed for all to see. This is me. For now. I will wear my scars for some time, for all to see. But if you can look past my wounds, and look deep inside, my eyes will explain what words never could. I am still here. Remember me? I have felt lost. I have been lost. But I am walking my path (I happen to be crawling through some rough terrain at the moment).  My eyes will show you that my heart aches, but she still searches for sun. They will remind you that for every ending an opportunity for a new beginning exists.  When you look at my eyes you will see what tired hope looks like. Look closer please. See me. Battle scarred and scared. Staring right back at you. I am not always strong. There is no need to be. Sometimes I am tired and weak. That is why I have asked so many of you for your love and prayers. I have needed an army of love. It works you know. When you feel you are drowning, arm yourself with love. Wear your battle damage for the world to see. Let them see you. For it is in your rising where you will inspire. Your freedom lives within you. It is yours for the taking. Dig deep until you get to the other side. Reach for hands if you must, but don't you quit. Dust yourself off. Find the light that illuminates your path. You are meant to shine. My son set his battle worn soldier up on his special shelf. He is aware that although this soldier appears to be  worn and broken, this was an experienced fighter. A soldier that has been to war and back. Someone who had a rough patch...a soldier that would continue his journey. Someone special.