Category Archives: Inspiration

Beam On!

beam

Have you ever felt like you’ve just scaled a mountain?  Or perhaps, you may feel as if you’ve been running like there is no tomorrow?  Either way, at some point, you have to stop and take a station break, so to speak.

And then, you turn and look back and when you see how far you have come, what you were able to do and how far you have moved forward, you simply say, “Wow!”  Then, you can Cash In, the title of a song by the great Phoebe Snow.

You can take all of the chips that you have gathered and as you count the stockpiles, you can hear the cash register ring cha-ching. There are monetary gains yes, but there are so many other assets.  There may be new friendships and associations formed or new skill sets added on as you unconsciously prepare for your next level.

Then you pause again and see that it’s time for a little self-indulgence.  You may not be where you want to be but when you really get still, you can express gratitude and sigh, “It is enough.  I have enough. I am enough.”

So you smile softly knowing that you shot your best shot.  You have let your light shine.   You then take the time to repair your mind, body and soul.  You know that yes, the battles of life have taken their tolls but the rewards are immeasurable.

You realize that every wrinkle was bought with a price along with all of the other changes that come from walking this earth over time.  W. Herbert Brewster, a Southern poet, wrote a poem called “Be Proud of Your Wounds and Scars.” Accepting life as it comes and presents itself, you just beam on quietly knowing that you gave it all you had!

 

Lynn M.                                                                                                             June 2, 2018

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Soft Landings

cushionsHave you ever felt as if you were a juggler as you tried to manage all of the pins being shoved your way? If so, you understand why the jugglers don’t take their eyes off of the pins because one wrong move can cause the whole game to come crashing down!

Life is like that as you try to keep it together or keep on keeping on.  It is comparable to watching a dog jump through hoops or a skilled track and field sprinter clear those hurdles in a timely manner.

But if there is huge slip-up, it’s just like an opponent in a chess game calling out “Checkmate.” You then know that the game is over. There is no other recourse other than to simply start  over, if given the chance.

There is a children’s story called Anansi the Spider and Anansi was prone to trouble; yet, his six sons often saved him.  Each son used his unique gift to successfully rescue their father as the brothers worked as a team.

On one occasion, they had to save Anansi from a huge falcon. After Anansi was freed from the mouth of the bird, he fell towards the ground.  His youngest son, Cushion, then positioned himself so that his father landed on his back.  Cushion offered a buffer and and helped his father have a proverbial soft landing.

So, the next time that you find yourself in the middle of running a challenging race, remember that in the end, the most you can hope for is a smooth landing. Later, when you have time to reflect and let out a big sigh of relief, you can lean on the words of Shakespeare.  He wrote, “All’s well that ends well!”

Lynn M.                                                            May 5, 2018

Old Treasures!

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As we hurry through our lives at breakneck speeds, we often forget some of those simple pleasures that once brought us comfort.  We continually gather the new things and pile them on top of our already collected goods until we have tall totem poles of stuff.

We may eventually realize that we indeed have a plethora of gains and in a few moments of stillness, we might have a chance uncover some of those beloved items at the bottom of the barrel.  It’s comparable to cleaning out a drawer and rediscovering a favorite blouse or snugly pair of pajamas.

As clarity returns to us when we slow down, we begin to remember other things that once brought us joy.  It could be a classical radio station that we once found  rewarding, a gospel CD that has been tucked away or a radio talk show that we had forgotten during our frenetic paces.

Old books that we once enjoyed could catch our attention and we may revisit them.  Or we might pull out the paint brushes and therapeutically finish a poem that we started on a piece of stretched canvas.

After completing several high-paced projects, we take the time to draw back the heavy curtains of our personal stages and notice those things that we once cherished.  We hear ourselves say, “Oh yeah,” as we remember how much peace a sauna or pool brought us.

Or, we may decide to replace those old ballet shoes that we enjoyed wearing around the house for increased balance. It is the small things that bring us the most happiness if we only take the time to remember them.

We should shuffle around those possessions that we already own or jog our memories to recall what once brought us peace in the past.  When the cream has risen to the top along with our smiles, we can make a pointed effort to restock our treasure troves of joy!

Lynn M.                                                                                       April 28, 2018

Rest!

rest signs

Everything comes to a rest after being in motion.  Musicians learn to read the rest signs on musical scores.  Trains, cars and airplanes come to a stop to unload and reload passengers or perhaps they have come to the end of their destined routes.

Birds stop flying to eat, regather and get their directions.  They may need to confer with the leader who is flying the point and see the new plan.  But they still have to come down to the ground to have that communication.

Wise ones know that in order to make good choices, they must descend from the mountains of high activity.  Then, they can come to a low valley point and simply stop.  As they rest, they can reflect, reassess, analyze and decide on what needs to be done next.  They can then create a new blueprint or action plan.

When the mind, body and soul are in one accord and all of the right tools are in place, they can emerge from those resting places.  They are then fired up and ready to go on.  They may have had to put everything and everyone on hold but  now, they can have continued success.  Then they are recharged, replenished  and as all systems are set to go, they can assertively, dive in!

Lynn M.                                                                                 April 21, 2018

Root-Bound No More

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The other day I was teaching a unit on New Plants to a group of first graders.  I thought of the many parables and parallels about life that were tucked in this lesson.  It basically said that plants need air, water and space.

I thought about my own fascination with gardens.  Those of us with a green thumb know that it all starts with a tiny seed that is deeply planted in fertilized soil. Yet, if properly nurtured, those tiny seeds grow into rows and rows of bountiful beauty.

Just like the plants, we also need plenty of air.  One of the first recommendations of our physicians and metaphysicians is, “Get plenty of fresh air!”  A breath of fresh air not only fills our lungs but it changes our thoughts.  A brisk walk in the elements whether sun, rain or wind is a sure-fired method of solving a problem.  A mental light bulb will invariably pop on and new perspectives are likely to emerge during a walk.

We need light too and the sun usually brings a smile to most of our faces.  It is a welcome source that inspires us to enjoy daily living.  If we have been sitting in the dark for too long, we realize what we have been missing once we open the blinds and pull back the curtains.  That emitted light speedily brings us closer to better health.  We can see that the glass is truly more full than empty.

And lastly, we definitely need space.  When plants stop growing we pull them out of their old pots and see that they have become root-bound.  The roots are all crowded together and there is no room for them to stretch their proverbial new wings.  So, we get a larger pot and make room for the new growth.

We may feel the walls of constriction are closing in on us but it is usually a sign that it is time to move on up higher. Like the  plants, we have been unconsciously growing.  There is a saying that says, “Your growing is showing!”  So, as the process dictates, we must move on to airy, light-filled, spacious places as we drink from even fresher fountains!

Lynn M.                                                                                       April 14, 2018

Refreshing Newness!

new life

When I think of spring, I think of new beginnings.  The birds wake us up with early morning serenades as they sing celebratory lyrics.  They coax us to get out of bed and put on our happy feet and move to earth’s new rhythms.

Trees slowing blossom and the sun peeks from behind those hazy clouds.  We gently break into a smile as we realize that we have kissed by its rays from the heavens.  They bring us hope and as weary wanderers, we sigh knowing that everything is being born again.

We begin to feel inspired and we know that this is the perfect season to initiate that spring cleaning.  We create those ‘to do lists’ and strike off each completed task one at a time as we clean closets and fulfill those other long, anticipated chores. We throw out those items that are no longer needed or those things that simply weigh us down and hold us back.

We may put on some upbeat music as we synchronize our clearing away process with those indelible beats. A list of new, refreshing ideas may flow forth as we keep our hands moving and if we are wise, we will pause and write them down before we forget what they whispered to us.

Most importantly, we cleanse our minds of the old, decrepit ways of thinking and we flush away all that is no longer useful to us.  When painful, past scenes roll across the screens of our minds, we silently hit the delete button to erase or blot them out so that they never come up again.

We breathe and we consciously feel refreshed and renewed as we replace the old with the new.  We recall the words of Jesus, the Master Teacher who said, “You cannot pour new wine into old wine skins.” Thus, we are born again feeling brand new!

Lynn M.                                                           March 31, 2018

In Due Time!

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Have you ever walked through a maze feeling like you were in a haze? You felt that you were moving your feet, your Spirit was involved and your Soul was stretching but you felt as if it was just not making much sense.

Perhaps, you questioned yourself and wondered,” Will I ever understand this experience? Why is it so difficult?” But because you listen, read and observe life around you, you start  remembering the parable about the clam and how its deep aggravation and irritation produced a precious pearl.

Or, you may recall the stories of how gold is brandished after sustaining the hot sting of the fires. Then there is the Biblical story of Daniel surviving the lion’s den.  Other tales  and acts of perseverance may come to mind as you question your own ability to endure the tests of life.

You know that you must keep your feet moving forward. Some may mock and others offer shouts of encouragement.  You accept both as you resolve to keep going and imagine yourself doing a triple Lutz like the figure skaters as you continue onward.

So as you keep it moving, you may think of verses like “Precept upon precept; line upon line; here a little, there a little (Isaiah 28:13).  Each movement forward builds your confidence and fortitude as you jump over each hurdle and your mountains eventually become mole hills.

And one day, because you have remained mindful, diligent and resourceful through your suffering moments, you look up and see that you have made it.  As Donald Lawrence sang, “You have walked into your season.

You can look back over the rocks, hills and mountains that you have scaled and see all of the riches that you have gathered along the way.  A slight smile breaks out across your face as you realize that you have just entered your new season and it all came in due time!

Lynn M.                                                                                  March 18, 2018

Graham’s Wisdom!

valleysWe lost a great Evangelist this week or shall I say that heaven just welcomed a new resident?  Yes, the formidable Billy Graham recently changed residences and gained a new address.   He wrote, “Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead.  Don’t believe a word of it.  I shall be more alive than I am now.  I will just have changed my address. I will have gone into the presence of God.”

We know that he could not live forever but after 99 years on this earth, it is still so hard to say goodbye. He said, “No matter how prepared you think you are for the death of a loved one, it still comes as a shock and it still hurts very deeply.”

We often think that people will always be around or somewhere in the backdrop, but when they are truly gone, we start to remember.  We recall what impact they had on our lives, what we learned and what we gained from their mere existences.

Upon hearing of his passing, I begin to scroll through some of his famous quotes.  It was somehow comforting and I felt closer to him as I read his thoughts.  Many of them touched me but this one held special meaning because it related to where I am on my current journey.

He said, “Mountaintops are for views, but fruit is grown in the valleys.”  I inaudibly said, “Wow, how perfect!”  I recounted my own valley experiences but after writing my gratitude pages, I realized that I am making progress.  Fruit is still ripening in the midst of my limited heightened views.

I can see that even when I felt as if time was standing still, I was still planting seeds, tilling the soil and seeing new growth bursting forth.  I gave a resounding thanks and thanked Billy Graham for helping me to see the fruits of my labor.

So, I say,” Enjoy your new address Mr. Graham.   I know that once Gabriel blew his trumpet and the gates of heaven opened , there was a warm reception party singing, “Well-done my good and faithful servant!”

Lynn M.                                                           February 25, 2018

 

The Greatest Love!

 

rose single

It’s February, the month of love. Immediately the colors of pink and red along with the shapes of hearts are reminders that Valentine’s Day is near.

A barrage of thoughts may fill your mind as you think about your wishes, expectations or precious memories.
But what about the greatest love of all?

Whitney Houston succinctly reminds you in her song that the greatest love of all is “the love inside of me.”  Let’s face it, you live in a selfie world and the younger generations have few problems with putting themselves at the center of it all.

But you older ones who are strapped with responsibility need to follow suit and take more time to love and adorn yourselves. If you are feeling out of balance, harried or generally just not ‘up to snuff’ as the Southerners say, then simply STOP.

Here is a new acronym:
S- Stop
T- Taking on
OOthers’
P- Problems

You are enough. You have enough to do as you manage your own life and realign yourself with the universe and the natural order of things. You may have become broken down, so to speak, from operating as a people-pleaser who has become depleted and out of tune.

As a remedy, push aside all but the absolute necessities. Become your own center and focal point and the greatest concern of all. Let everybody else wait or take a proverbial hike. Then, put on some soft music, take long bath soaks, light a candle and listen to healing and soothing meditation tapes to regain your central peace.

Ask yourself: What am I striving for? What do I want to accomplish? What is my timeline? What is my plan of action? What is urgent and what can wait?

Slow down and put as many things on hold as possible until your strength resurges to a comfortable level. Center, align and reawaken to your own voice. Listen to what your heart is telling you to do.

Give yourself all of the attention that you have been doling out to others. Acknowledge the fact that you cannot help others until you first help yourself. Take small steps as you move towards realizing that the greatest love of all is indeed inside of you.

Agree with Tanaaz.  “If  you have been neglecting yourself by doing things to please others, you may find that this lunar energy forces you to take a fewer steps back and relax. Say, ‘I deserve to love myself. I deserve to be happy.’

Lynn M.                                                          February 11, 2018

Rolling Forward!

2018 has jolted us to life!  So much seems to be happening on so many different levels.  We do not have time to close our mouths over one shocker before something else comes along that jars us even further awake.

It is comparable to that spank that doctors once gave the newborn child to hear the first cry.  Nowadays, they massage the baby’s bottom to make sure that the child is awake and has indeed crossed over into the land of the living.

I recently read a novel called Ghana Must Go and it spoke on the African belief about the birth of twins.  Author Taiye Selasi said that the first one comes in this new world, looks around and then lets the other one know if it is worth the journey.

I could not believe it when I read it because I had already written about the birth of twins in my last novella called Gardens of Green.  Similarly, a set of twins is born and one makes it but the other does not survive.  I was spiritually attuned and did not know it at the time. This world would have been too much for the weaker twin, so he opted out.

Gardens of Green cover

But  we are  already here in the midst of this jolting January so we have to lean in as these many things roll across the screens of our television sets.  We cannot afford to take our eyes off of the ball. We should cleave to hope in an effort to keep it alive and paddle on through. Hopefully, things will ease up and settle down as we propel ourselves forward!

Lynn M.                                                                    January 20, 2018