The Cure For Our Sickness?

Kindness: First, Last, Always!
What if each one human, would decide each one and every moment, with each and every thought, word, or deed, to first cause no harm…to oneself or to another? Would not all creation resound with music round the sphere?

“This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.

-The Dalai Lama

If we no have peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.
-Mother Teresa

There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning.
-Louis L’Amour

What the world needs now…love!

There can be no higher nationalism, no better self-indulgence than to love…one another…the good…the bad…the ugly…the undeserving…and yes, even the enemy.

The Cure For Our Sickness?

Kindness: First, Last, Always! What if each one human, would decide each one and every moment, with each and every thought, word, or deed, to first cause no harm…to oneself or to another? Would not all creation resound with music round the sphere? “This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no … Read More

For Nothing

“For nothing is fixed, forever and forever, it is not fixed; the earth is always shifting, the light is always changing, the sea does not cease to grind down rock. Generations do not cease to be born, and we are responsible to them because we are the only witnesses they have. The sea rises, the … Read More


Not-Knowing Is Knowing

Rambling thoughts have rattled around in my head today, however, I have to admit I prefer this disposition over the roiling emotions I was experiencing last week. It has been a month of living with the ‘stay at home’ order and there does not yet appear any soon relief from our social separations. Honestly, these days of pandemic provide a full spectrum of emotion for the unsuspecting, home-bound furloughed working person.

And in all of this, I want to know something. Don’t you? I mean I think I really want to know! I want to know WHY? I want to know HOW MANY will live or die? I want to know WHEN will this end? I want to know WHO started this insanity? Most of all it seems we all want to know WHO is TO BLAME? WHO is IN CHARGE? And last but not least, WHO IS GOING TO PAY FOR ALL OF THIS? I think we all feel like naughty children banished to the corner. HOW LONG must we stay in our rooms?

Must we go on in this dungeon of not-knowing? I want to KNOW why…why must we? Must we, ALL OF US, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF US…go through this great disturbance? And then I wonder, would knowing those things I don’t know really help me right now? My next thought is this: Could I actually handle knowing the truth(s) of my recent, mad-raving questionings? Could any of us handle such knowing? Because when I think about this for any amount of minutes, it seems that once we gain a knowledge of what we don’t know, the unveiling truth becomes like a death to us. Our innocence dies; our peace of mind dies; our hope dies…everything we think we have a right to know about something, anything really, actually brings us to a point of living death.

Examine these thoughts, because they are fears about outcomes. But this worry is based on your need to know. Break the cycle of those thoughts by being aware of the now. Savor the quest, not the finish. The Cool Impossible ~ Christopher McDougall and Eric Orton

There are only a few certainties in this life, namely, we are born, we live, we die…of these things we may all agree upon…we all know these three to be truth. So how does knowing these things help us or make the hard things of not-knowing easier? Is it better to know or not know? Do we want to know to ease our discomfort? Or should we consider our not-knowing is given for the purpose of expanding our character and humanity.

We cannot feel good about an imaginary future when we are busy feeling bad about an actual present. When we try to overlook, ignore, or set aside our current gloomy state and make a forecast about how we will feel tomorrow, we find that it’s a lot like trying to imagine the taste of marshmallow while chewing liver. Daniel Gilbert – Stumbling on Happiness

Perhaps we might do ourselves a favor and acquiesce our need-to-know so we may apprehend how to exist meaningfully…in what each moment reality reveals to us. Perhaps then we might grasp the real reason we have been given a life to live…perhaps our being and doing is for the sole purpose of living from Source…which is LOVE!

Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.
~ Eckhart Tolle ~

Lest you think me daft, may I remind you these thoughts of mine are simply the rambling, house-bound webs of perception which have rattled around in my head today. Thank you for reading them…I hope you may find some comfort from my sharing them with you. It does seem, especially in these days, that life is pure mystery, and yet I am okay believing that for truth. Really, I do believe that reality, life as we know and experience it, is actually very kind to us. When I consider how I may live comfortably with not-knowing, I make peace with what IS. Yes, the need to know is the beginning of death.

Cast your cares for stones they are,
Cast away, cast away, near and far,
Throw away, far away, small or large,
Worry not to see where stones land, for
The power of casting comes from the hand;
So cast away, cast away, cast away all,
Throw stones hard, throw stones fast,
Watch feet trample over stones cast; now
Trod across, trod across, yes, trod across brave,
Across the stone path trusting heart has paved.
Brave heart, true heart, pure heart behold,
Yes! Mystery perceive, embrace, and imbue,
Life lived not-knowing is knowing life true.
~DEBreen


Shine the Light!

Click to listen: SHINE THE LIGHT~CHOIR

Your eyes are windows into your body.
If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light.
If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar.
If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!
Matthew 67:22-23 The Message

What is the meaning of this?
Why do words fail to assist in comprehending?
While emotions spew panoptic across the course of heart and soul.
Why then, during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

The body too, informs of these psychic extremes,
It buzzes with edgy, wired, bursts of manic synchronicity.
The physicality of these days is really over the top,
Red-alert, fight or flight, move over, take cover.
Why then during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

These days of COVID-19…days foreboding, otherworldly, connoting;
These days of solitude and distance between us looming,
Reminiscent, these days, of shadow lands walking;
These days, they bring dark clouds of aprehension,
Why then during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

Are these pains we currently notice, the pangs of labor pushing?
Pushing us from our dark tombs of unknowing?
What else should we think now, surmise or predict now? for,
Change is our air now; our breath and our death now.

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

Yes, of course, this must be the reason;
The times are ripe and in due season,
The cosmos has spoken; the shift has awoken,
All nations, and peoples, and nature is broken;
For these are the days of troubling pandemic,
No time to waste our living…asleep, apathetic.

Shine YOUR Light, for all the world to See!

 


Sleeper…Wake Up!

A New Year (and decade) has dawned…it’s January, 2020 and my thoughts turn white when I consider the clean, blank pages of my new calendar. Yet when I regard the clean emptiness of the coming days, I am soon overwhelmed by the many potentials and possibilities which lay ahead.

Caught up in the swirling inertia of this forward thinking, I notice how strongly I desire to fill, to create, to plan every detail of the 365 days which are, as of yet, unborn to me. And then I feel the weight of all this ambition and scheming, it bears down strongly upon my imagination…and thankfully, it presses me down to earth. The weight of my heavy thinking brings me full circle…back to myself…back to the real-ness of now…and the trance is broken…the white-ness of today, in this space of now is all that I am granted to hold and manage. The white space of today, begs for shape, texture, color and form. How will I render and memorialize these many passing moments? By being fully awake, alert and engaged with all that comes to pass before me…whether the moments are peopled or solitary. Today will be like no other.

“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.” Eckhart Tolle

A sobering connection, I realize…how easy our enticement…to swap out our present moments for the mirage of our future days. We are so enamored with the sparkle of our imagined tomorrows that we don’t even realize our sleepwalking through the adventures of today. The white space of so many tomorrows becomes like the soft nothingness of white noise which lulls dreamers fast to sleep. Ahh…white, empty, blank-ness…behold…I give you, the sleeper!

“Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences — and all events are blessings given to us to learn from.” Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Shall we commence, sleepers one and all, on the new of this year, to rouse ourselves awake! May we become vigilant, rather than impervious, to the beauty of now, whatever and however it unfolds before us. Can we embrace the imperfect present-ness without condition or prejudice? Is it possible to awaken our inner child-likeness so we may delight in the simplicity of each precious moment?

“Life is easy, life is delightful. It’s only hard on your illusions, your ambitions, your greed, your cravings.” Anthony de Mello

What do we have to lose by living in sync with reality, even when its ugliness is our only companion? Or rather, what may we gain by living in harmony with the essence and purity of reality? Is that even possible for wanna-be sleepwalkers?

Clearly, for each of us, time is of the essence. If we desire to be awakened to our very own ‘reality’, in all its unfiltered real-ness, then it’s time to rouse from our collective slumber. This rousing will require us to make many inquiries into our own thinking and believing thoughts. If we are suffering with some aspect of reality, then perhaps it is the result of some belief or attachment we have formed which will need to be dropped in order to live real and free with ourselves. (Note: read anything by Anthony de Mello for futher insights on this principle.)

Do you not feel the urgency to embrace this day before another one passes? Can you not hear the clock’s tick-tick-tickling you to your senses? Wake up oh sleeper, wake up! Your life is waiting for you to live it…fully aware…fully alive. Your life is a mighty work of art waiting for you to aspire and inspire its creation. It’s a New Year…are you game for the living?

“The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware — joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.” Henry Miller


Cultivating Gratitude

Our Thanksgiving holiday is only a few days away, so it seems quite natural to sit here at my desk this early Monday morning in contemplation of those things for which I am thankful. How blessed I am indeed…there is so much for which I am grateful. This year has been full, overflowing even, with so many good things: vacations; running/biking race weekend getaways; home improvement projects; memory making family events.
Of course, this year has also had a fair share of illness, loss, and business challenges.

And yet, as I consider the past 300+ days I have lived this year, I cringe when I realize the frenzy in which I inhabited those days. How could I have sped through so much living with so little attention? Busyness is the spoiler of modern living; and I am such a modern girl in this regards. One glimpse of my day-timer reveals the disconnect of an over-booked life. Seriously, my days are packed. If my calendar was a credit card, it would be  completely maxed out!

No amount of regret changes the past people, no amount of anxiety changes the future, but any amount of gratitude changes the present.
Ann Voskamp, The Way of Abundance

Even now as I look back on this year, it feels like I have lived like some kind of ship-wrecked survivor…swimming, floating, treading water in open sea with no land in sight. The promise of rest, visible on the horizon, vanishes with the setting sun. And when I finally reach the shore of my destination (a weekend or vacation), true rest and restoration was fleeting at best. I may as well be chasing a desert’s mirage.

The capacity to reflect well and deeply on daily life is an achievement. To reflect well you have to be comfortable with a degree of solitude, because reflection requires some quiet and aloneness.
Thomas Moore, An Ageless Soul

Even reflecting on this busyness of mine feels wearisome, but I am hopeful because I have not yet lost sight of myself altogether. Because even now, in these moments of contemplation, there is a welling up of hope, not resignation. In my heart of hearts I am truly grateful for all that I have been granted to accomplish this year. Good health and bodily strength this year has given me a solid platform for training myself and assisting many of my clients towards better health and fitness.  This is most fulfilling work; this work energizes me even while it wears me down to catch my breath. Nonetheless, I am grateful for this work; it is highly meaningful to me.

The quality of life is in proportion, always, to the capacity for delight. The capacity for delight is the gift of paying attention.
Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way

But as I consult with myself and the wisdom of those of whom I read and with whom I acquaint, I am jolted back to reality; to alertness; to attention. Cultivating gratitude into my life is just like cultivating fitness into my life. In order for these attributes to grow strong and stable, they require daily doses of my full, undivided attention.

To flex my gratitude muscle will require repetitions (minutes per set) of quiet thoughtfulness interspersed throughout each day. Regular bouts of purposeful contemplation are truly the most refreshing, gratitude building exercises I may perform. Even just writing about this practice brings me a sense of peace, quiet and purpose. This morning’s interlude has already instructed me, and changed me so that even now I perceive more clearly how to grow this grace into my bustling life.

There is ecstasy in paying attention. You can get into a kind of Wordsworthian openness to the world, where you see in everything the essence of holiness, a sign that God is implicit in all of creation.
Anne Lamot, Bird by Bird

Tomorrow or maybe a day or two after the holiday, I will have to spend some time thinking about how I’ll attack and conquer my frightful day-timer in 2020! But first, it is time for me to rest…and be thankful for the lesson learned today.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE! I hope your holiday finds you digging into a plate full of yummy food with a heart full of grateful appreciation.

Watch this beautiful video to cultivate gratitude, everyday:

Gratitude: The Short Film by Louie Schwartzberg from ecodads on Vimeo.

 


Practice = Becoming

What we think about matters…alot. In fact, what we think about has the power to change the course of our life as well as the power to improve or destroy the world we inhabit. Over the course of our lifetime, our thinking may literally bring life or death to all those things (people, nature, etc) with whom we relate. While reading my daily devotional (from Fr. Richard Rohr/Center for Contemplation and Action), I was pricked and challenged anew to re-consider my own ‘thinking thoughts’ in relation to nonviolence. The following is an excerpt from this morning’s reading; the colored text is what caught my attention:

What does it mean to be nonviolent? Coming from the Hindu/Sanskrit word ahimsa, nonviolence was defined long ago as “causing no harm, no injury, no violence to any living creature.” But Mohandas Gandhi insisted that it means much more than that. He said nonviolence was the active, unconditional love toward others, the persistent pursuit of truth, the radical forgiveness toward those who hurt us, the steadfast resistance to every form of evil, and even the loving willingness to accept suffering in the struggle for justice without the desire for retaliation. . .

Another way to understand nonviolence is to set it within the context of our identity. Practicing nonviolence means claiming our fundamental identity as the beloved [children] of the God of peace. . . . This is what Jesus taught: “Blessed are the peacemakers; they shall be called the sons and daughters of God [Matthew 5:9]. . . . Love your enemies and pray for your persecutors, then you shall be sons and daughters of the God who makes [the] sun rise on the good and the bad, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust” [Matthew 5:44-45]. In the context of his visionary nonviolence—radical peacemaking and love for enemiesJesus speaks of being who we already are. He talks about our true identities as if they propel us to be people of loving nonviolence. . . .

If only we could, all of us together, just practice being who we are created to be…LOVE! Just be LOVE in a body with hands and feet, arms and legs, heart and soul; willing to become, to embody and to embrace the essence of life force. If only we could remind each other to stay focused and true to our collective calling and in so doing realize this as our ONE true POWER and FREEDOM. Power and freedom to be pure (love) in motive with kindness towards others.

What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while.
Gretchen Rubin

How can we not take a moment, or many moments strung together or apart, for serious contemplation on this matter? Shall we make an effort to engage our thinking? To re-consider or re-arrange disjointed or broken beliefs about ourselves? About who we are at the center and essence of our Being? Shall we together, today, and then again tomorrow and every tomorrow thereafter, PRACTICE BEING LOVE…towards all those things and people and problems which we encounter? 

Will you join me? May we make a pact…you and I and us? Shall we do our own little research project for the purpose of practicing authentic nonviolence? May we test the veracity of this TRUTH (practice = becoming = reality)? Shall we begin again together?

I would love to hear from you. I would love to begin sharing and enlarging our collective goodness and creative genius towards our being and becoming…LOVE. There is no better time than now.

Let There Be Peace on Earth


Transformative Thinking

What’s my excuse? That’s the first thought in my head when I saw this picture and read the article about Cynthia Arnold. She just ran a marathon (3 hours, 11 minutes), pushing her three children in a stroller (a total weight of 185-lbs), and I don’t go outside for a short training run because I think it is too hot (or windy, or dark, or cold, or ???). My question to myself, was instantly answered by myself: “I have no excuse!” Next question to myself: “If you don’t have an excuse…get going!”

Really, I have no excuse for my lack of running these past six months (i.e. all of 2019)! All I have to do is put my shoes on, grab a bottle of water and a hat and shuffle myself out the door and down the street. Instead, most days I have to do mental gymnastics to entice myself to go outside (or onto the treadmill) to go for a run. I think my excuse is this: I believe every thought that comes into my head! And rather than wait for a change of season, I need to have a change of thinking. Clearly, this change needs a catalyst; and I am so grateful for the spark which ignited my motivation anew by Cynthia Arnold and her story which was recently published in Runner’s World.

When I consider how Cynthia runs and trains for her race events, all of a sudden I feel LIGHT, UN-ENCUMBERED, and UN-ATTACHED! Hello, I wake up to my life’s stage and remember that I have the privilege to run whenever or wherever I desire…day or night, hot or cold…summer or winter! True, my desire to run ebbs more than flows these days, but desire is not everything. What I think and believe about my desire or lack of desire is of primary importance. My lazy, weak thinking (and believing) becomes my very own cryptonite! As I think I am…I become. How can I transform my tired, lazy bread-crumb dragging thoughts into energenic, motivational running thoughts? Is transformational thinking a matter of choice? Or is something more mystical required?

deb-5k-heritage-park-e1563302834584.jpg

What alchemy may I invoke to jump start my lackluster motivation? Is it as simple as seeing someone like Cynthia doing an amazing thing and believing that the same is possible for myself? If I think those kinds of thoughts, and follow that trail of thinking like bread crumbs on the yellow brick running path, is it possible that I can transform my running, mind and body, in three months? or six months? Perhaps…and as you can see in the picture above, I am a runner striving to run her best…even with weak thinking! And yet, when I consider how important running is to me, and how much I want to better my running and enlarge my accomplishments, it is these kinds of thoughts which begin to make me feel like a runner again. These are the thoughts which make me feel empowered…motivated…energized. When I consider what I have accomplished in my running past, I am propelled to believe that any running goal which I desire strongly enough is indeed within the realm of possibility for me.

So I have to tell you, and I am certain you already know this truth: It is very hard, solitary work, to strive towards achieving something big for yourself! Living life to the full or overflowing is not for sissies or weaklings of spirit. And this is why I so appreciate the running community, near and far; because runners of every shape, size and ability engage the same challenges when aspiring to run their best, whether in training or racing. Clearly, what makes a runner successful, or anyone else for that matter, is the strength of one’s desire and the will to train one’s mind to master the doubts of doom or gloom.

I have worked hard, logged a lot of miles, and try every day to be grateful for my physical health. I always want to be faster, better, and place higher. I enjoy competing and even when I’ve met my arbitrary goal for a race, I always pick apart how I could have done it even better.  I’ve failed a lot in my races, but I don’t let the failures define me. Instead, I choose to be happy about what I can do.  Carissa Liebowitz

So in all of this writing to and for you, I hope to become a part of the alchemy which may energize each one of us towards transformative thinking and moving and acting. I hope thereby to encourage you, if you are at all struggling with soggy-bread-crumb thinking or lack-luster desire. I hope you will read the stories behind the lives of successful runners like Deena Kastor, Carissa Liebowitz, and Cynthia Arnold. Read their back stories and remember, they believed they could achieve great things for themselves…and they were not afraid to work hard and keep their focus steady.

When I see the pictures and read the stories of my running heroes, I think they suffer not as I do. I think my heroes, young or old, are immune to weak thinking and struggle not with lack of motivation, or strength or confidence. And then…they remind me; they tell their story and they remind me; they wake me up to myself and my life as only I may live it. They share their experiences and in doing so, they help transform me and my thinking. I take their thoughts, and add them to my warehouse, to my repertoire of running possibilities.

 

 


Dora’s Baton

We each have life’s race to run; in relay with all our others;
How will we finish? How will we know?
If our race was run well, that others might grow?
That others might grow into grace, joy and confidence…
Will my life, your life, make the transfer clear?
Will it at all, as we live each day, a difference make?
Will the ideals we hold close, of faith, hope, joy, and love…
Will these things pass well? Relay secure?
Will these connections be made…
Into their hands? Upon their feet? Into their hearts?
Will their lives pick up our pace?
Will their lives improve? Be challenged?
Those lives with whom we run life’s race?

To be sure of one thing, of this I am certain,
A runner runs best when she runs to her calling.
So give this race your all, my all too; and may we reflect often on this;
This relay race of life needs team mates devoted one to the other.
And while we run, while you run and I run too,
One more thing we might think or consider;
The baton, our baton, our life really,
Is lived best when lived and raced for the sake of the others.

For each race, each relay, each exchange we make,
Is a part of the whole scheme, whatever the take.
Yet more oft than not, we forget to enjoy,
Until we are done!
Yes, more oft than not, we forget to enjoy
Our race, your race, my race too,
Until it is done, and we are over the line,
That race, lost or won, forever in time!

And it seems true too, with the passing and crossing over of a life,
Only the cheering, weeping and rejoicing heard behind the line,
Reminds us again, so that we and all others might finally know,
How well our race, your race, my race was run;
Each wild and precious race, how was it run?

How will we know then, you wonder? This, today, is what I presently think:
That when we hand the baton of life over,
When it is gladly received by another runner,
Then we will know a life, a race, a baton, had meaning;
The baton received well, is recieved for the running!
Then we will know, a race first run with misgivings or fear,
Has transformed its runner with its passing, though how, it is unclear;
Then we will know, and perhaps understand, perceive,
Our baton held so dearly, must pass on to be received.
The baton must pass, and so do we; before an exchange of runners may proceed.

So now a request I make, and I make without further adieu,
The time to receive a baton is at hand, it’s true;
Receive the baton willing; and run with it fast;
Passed on from Dora, then on to you and to me;
Passed on for our learning; it’s time we receive.
Receive her baton, of faith, of joy and love for the others;
Receive her baton, take flight, not cover!
Receive it for life and all of those living!
Receive it from Dora, and all that it’s giving:
Wings for soaring, feet for running, breath for breathing,
Our baton, her baton, yours and mine too;
Carry it forward, for the next runner,
Carry it forward in strength, please do!

Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! ~Hebrews 12:1-3 The Message (MSG)

In Memory of Dora C: For all those who knew and loved you…may they be encouraged to run their course, strong and true, following your good life as a pattern for their own. May they rejoice in the gift of knowing you and receive your baton with happiness to run their race…towards the Beloved One.


Above All Else – Focus

SEEK TO PLEASE ME above all else.
Let that GOAL be your FOCAL POINT as you go through this day.
Such a mind-set will protect you
from scattering your ENERGY to the winds.
Jesus Calling ~ Sarah Young

Above all else…this is a high standard! Seeking to please HIM! In EVERYTHING! This means I will think first on HIM and of HIM. I will consider my thoughts, my words, my actions..first…for His sake. This seems a most difficult, lofty task, and yet when I consider how being ‘in love’ with someone makes even hard things easy. Then after all, this does not seem such an extraordinary request…for myself or any of us others who claim to love and follow Jesus.

As I consider this appeal from the perspective of my running life, I acknowledge the value and power of keeping my focus. And as a runner, the finish line is a mighty enduring focal point. A finish line, any finish line really, provides immense purpose and drive to keep one’s momentum moving forward. And today, with this devotional reading appearing before my eyes, I am reminded again that the great I AM desires to be at the center of my focus: SEEK TO PLEASE ME ABOVE ALL ELSE!

This is an energetic goal to train towards, is it not? To give the Divine One our attention and preference? This goal alone can consume one’s entire life’s purpose. If ever I considered myself an ‘athlete’, how now would I train myself to succeed in achieving such an ambitious goal? What sort of athletic maneuvers does one perform to become strong towards this end…to seek His pleasure above all else? When I contemplate this imperative, perhaps this task is not too difficult when love is at its core.

Focus your attention on the path just ahead of you
and on the One who never leaves your side.
Jesus Calling ~ Sarah Young

To please the One who is above all and above all others simply requires my trusting focus; narrow my attention to the path just ahead. Never forget His promise, “I will be with you always”. Yes, of course, this makes perfect sense. Isn’t this what I do when I run a race or run a long distance? Isn’t this how I stay above the fray of defeating thoughts when I am weary and full of worry and feel faint. When I lose heart and breath, this is my sign to focus on the path just ahead…not a mile ahead…not 10 minutes ahead. Just focus on the present moment…just attend to the rhythm of my moving feet, beating heart, breathing lungs.

POUR ALL YOUR ENERGY into trusting Me.
It is through trust that you stay
connected to Me, aware of My Presence.
Jesus Calling ~ Sarah Young

When I consider my true reality, that I inhabit any present moment in the confines of time and eternity simultaneously, I wake up to my strength in the ETERNAL ONE, because I am body, soul, spirit. I felt that strength on Sunday last. I felt it while I was slogging through mile 13…mile 14…mile 15…the steps toward the end were painful indeed. BUT when I thought of the One who lives and moves in Me, of how time and eternity co-exist in ME, I felt energized and lifted up towards the object of my goal…the finish line. For those present moments, I was able to transcend the momentary discomforts of putting feet forward. When I focused on my present reality, my weakness became my strength because His presence gave vigor to my breath and joy to my pain.

And now you know what I know; now you know what kind of thoughts give me GO and FUEL my fire. These kinds of thoughts propel me towards a seemingly un-obtainable goal…running for 26.2 miles…in ONE DAY. These kinds of thoughts fueled me forward last Sunday; even though the thoughts sputtered and flickered off and on, in and out. These thoughts of the ONE…ABOVE ALL ELSE…nourished my flagging reserves.

To think of His Presence…in Me…beside Me…lifted me onward and upward into something like bliss. Those last miles taught me, educated me, via aches, pains and fears of every imagining, that ultimately all things are possible when a mind and heart are focused…ABOVE ALL ELSE!

Matthew 6:30-33 The Message (MSG)

30-33 “If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.


Of Fire and Ice

Today marks six weeks.
Six weeks ago I took to bed a pounding headache,
Six weeks ago I awoke in a firey furnace.

But today, like so many days recently passed,
I awoke with gratefulness.
Not just because my health is much improved,
But because the remnants of my affliction
Reverberate still within me.

And with each new day I find a way,
To embrace the scrappy reminders with affection.
Like glowing embers after the inferno’s blaze,
The crackling sparks remind, remand, revive;
Jolting consciousness to awaken!

Wake Up!
To gratitude in gratefulness,
To acceptance in peacefulness,
To mystery in wonderment,
To strength in weakness,
To growth in restfulness.

Today marks six weeks.
Six weeks of persisting amidst the refiner’s fire.
Six weeks of re-learning, re-remembering, re-renewing!
Six weeks of gifting, receiving, and growing through it all;
Six weeks later, fully awake, fully alive!

 

Never fear the moments
you imagine will FREEZE you:
unexpected blasts of cold
can be what DRAWS you nearer
to the FLAME of His love.

Darn the COLD.

Thank God for the FIRE.

Welcome to the CLUB
of those braving the cold blasts
in a thousand DAILY ways. 

Every one of US,
in one HURTING WAY or another,
is in this CLUB.

The grace that’s in this MOMENT
is your MANNA.

Wish for the past
and you drink POISON.

Worry about the future
and you eat FIRE.

Stay in this MOMENT
and you eat the MANNA
needed for NOW.

The Way of Abundance ~ Ann Voskamp

grow through