Although my creative Muse was on vacation or dormant for the last couple of months, scraps of paper with scribbled words still accumulated on my desk, in my handbag, and in the car. All carried words of wisdom that somehow continue to make their way to me. I’ve decided that one of my missions in life seems to be to share as much collective and collectable wisdom as I can. So here’s the latest and the greatest!
“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life, by what we give.” Sir Winston Churchill
“You and I share the serenity of understanding – a warm glow in the silences between us. When we have talked and
talked and come to the end of words, the speech of our hearts continues on………… Anonymous
“If I have achieved anything in my life it is because I have not been embarrassed to talk about God.” Jim Forest
“If you wish to travel far, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness and fear.” Cesare Pavese
“Your spiritual growth does not happen when you are peaceful and content. It happens when you get angry, sad,
greedy, jealous, critical, impatient. It happens when you lose your “spiritual mask” and realize that you are not
superman or –woman, but just an ordinary human being learning how to love.” Paul Ferrini
“No matter what age you are, or what your circumstances might be, you are special, and you still have
something unique to offer. Your life, because of who you are, has meaning.” Barbara De Angelis
“The lure of the distant and difficult is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are.” John Burroughs
“You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it true. You may have to work
for it, however.” Richard Bach
“Woman must come of age by herself ………. She must find her true center alone.” Ann Morrow Lindbergh
“Live your life each day as you would climb a mountain. An occasional glance towards the summit keeps
the goal in mind, but many beautiful scenes are to be observed from each new vantage point.” Harold B. Melchart
“Happiness exists more in small conveniences or pleasures that occur every day than in great pieces
of good fortune that happen but seldom in the course of life.” Benjamin Franklin
Here’s to the next time. May I wish you all a peaceful, healthy, abundant and joy-filled 2012!
I am so tired of being sick this Spring. It seems as though I have been dealing with unhealthy demons since about 20 February. First my really bad upper respiratory deal that knocked me out for two to three weeks. Then, after just one week of feeling good I was plagued by a bad cold/allergies (I never did decide which it was). That dragged on for more than three weeks before I was hit by the gastric flu bug. I am so ready to be done with all this and be truly healthy for the rest of this year!!
What really annoys the heck out of me is that sickness robs me not just of health on all levels, but also of time. Oh I know I still live each minute that God gives me. I don’t lose effective time. What I lose is the time I would normally put in to all the various activities that make up the flesh of my life.
My garden lies in wait to be ministered to. Outdoor projects for which I had a planned scheduled have to go on hold. The weeds begin to sprout profusely in the flower beds, and just the pure unadulterated pleasure of being out there working in the dirt has to be postponed while viral bugs have their with my body.
My writing is forced on to a back burner. No matter which part of my body is physically under attack, the Muse withdraws and hides. My head seems full of fuzz and leaves no room for inspiration. My arms and hands are sluggish, ravaged by fevers or infections or plain old weakness, and consequently they have no strength to fly over the keyboard in creativity.
My craft room sits in silence full of its colorful cardstock and inks, ribbons and stamps, glitter and glue and various findings. But nothing there is able to penetrate the general sense of dis-ease that pervades my body, heart, mind and soul. Not even a fast-finished product can elevate me from the murky depths that sickness produces within me. The Muse avoids temptation!
And my wonderful husband patiently tends me, doing everything he can to alleviate the grayness that insidiously surrounds me. And even there I feel robbed because I have no energy, nor am I in any kind of mood, to actively participate in our relationship. And that is a loss in and of itself.
There is nothing I can do about this state of affairs. Bugs and viruses for the most part have to be given their time. I can only languish and try to be as positive as possible. I practice patience and humility in accepting the situation for what it is. But my inner child grows pouty, wants to go out and play, and longs for the company of Muse.
I have been very careful this week in my return to health. No rushing out and doing everything it once. This is difficult for me because I have a tendency to want to make up for lost time, to catch up. But one thing I have learned: time once past can never be “caught up”.
Today I have done a little in the garden: prepared and planted up three raised beds with spring onions, Web’s lettuce, and chard. In another small flower bed I sewed seeds that I hope will bring a small wild profusion of blooms later in the summer. I finished all that I had hoped to achieve before the rains came.
And now I sit in my lanai and listen to the thunder rolling in the distance. One particular roll sounded rather like a Harley and for a moment I was amused as I pictured God in black leather Chaps and a ponytail rumbling across the skies on a sleek chrome machine! And, joy oh joy, my Muse is back and here we go dancing across the keyboard in a game of catch-me-if-you-can.
I’m back on one of my favorite subjects again – words. In recent postings,Poetry- Words Painting Pictures, Musings- Sharing Our Gifts And Talents, and Reading Or Writing- It’s Still About Words, I have spoken at length about my fascination with the written word. Seeing the way that words are strung together by different authors to achieve different descriptive effects gives me great pleasure and reaches into my soul.
However, words, ether written or spoken, can be used for negative purposes too. Just a few days ago I was witness to a small scene between two people that reminded me of this. There is no need to go into the details of the situation. Suffice it to say that one of the parties involved was extremely hurt at the end of the exchange and it gave me pause to think, once again, about the power of words.
Words can be used to build up or tear down a person’s sense of self worth, their self esteem. Words can comfort or they can cause pain. They can be a generous gift or a piercing sword. Words can cause laughter or tears, they can bring enlightenment or they can confuse. In the mouth of the speaker or the writer, words can be veritable weapons far more destructive than a bomb.
Sometimes the words themselves are not at fault. When delivering a message about the death of a dear one, or giving the truth about a harsh medical diagnosis, the messenger cannot change the words in order to not cause pain. Bad and difficult situations happen in life and we need to be informed of them. That is part of Life itself. But the way in which such information is given can make a huge difference to the receiver.
I am well aware that in the past I have cut people down, usually those closest and dearest to me, by thoughtless and scathing criticism. I have also been on the receiving end of such word lashings and I know how that feels. Over the years I have learned to curb my tongue, to take a deep breath and think twice before speaking.
How many times have I wanted to take back words spoken in haste. But the word, once spoken, cannot be erased. The most I can do is make attempts at reparation and ask forgiveness, as quickly as possible, and pray that the damage caused is minimal and that the injured party finds it within their heart to “forgive and forget”.
I try to remain on high alert when I know that I am going to be involved in discussions on sensitive issues. I always pray and ask God to keep me in a state of compassion. One of my favorite prayers is the Prayer of St. Francis. This is the prayer that I take into many difficult situations or before going into a retreat process. I would like to share that prayer with you now.
- Lord, make me a channel of thy peace;
- that where there is hatred, I may bring love;
- that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of forgiveness;
- that where there is discord, I may bring harmony;
- that where there is error, I may bring truth;
- that where there is doubt, I may bring faith;
- that where there is despair, I may bring hope;
- that where there are shadows, I may bring light;
- that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.
- Lord, grant that I may seek rather to comfort than to be comforted;
- to understand, than to be understood;
- to love, than to be loved.
- For it is by self-forgetting that one finds.
- It is by forgiving that one is forgiven.
- It is by dying that one awakens to eternal life.