Are You Tending Your Garden?

This patch of flowers was once a beautiful garden with many colorful flowers and dozens of butterflies dancing about. It made my heart smile every time I walked past. Today there are mostly weeds with only a few flowers. While this garden was once tended with love, there has been no one to water or weed it all year. As I walked along my path, I thought that there surely was a lesson here. With no care, most of the flowers have disappeared, but not all. There is still life in this garden. I think maybe perhaps only as a reminder to the tender of the garden to please not give up and to come watch over her once again.

Is there something in the garden of your life that needs tending?  Is it possible that there is still life there?  If it’s important to you, don’t give up.  Give it the care and love it deserves and before you know it, you will see it come back to life.

untended garden

cosmos

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The Bonfire People

Lonnie and Teresa

It is said that the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away…

If I’m not careful I will focus on that terrible taketh away part while forgetting the giveth part. But I catch myself and refocus on what this life is – temporary. It is like a mist floating in the air. There, then gone. Where does it go?

Now there are people and there are people. You know the ones. The ones who can make everything okay by just being in their presence. The ones who put a smile on your face when you’ve had a crappy day. They seem to take life as it comes and they see the best in everyone. If you’ve ever been fortunate enough to know one of these people, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

The problem happens when that dreaded taketh away part comes and steals these special people from us. We feel numb. We cry, and if we’re honest, we become angry that they’re gone. We may even get angry with God for taking our special person from us. Why? Why did they have to go?

It is when we realize that God blessed us with that bright star in the first place, that we can have some semblance of peace. We all are put on this earth for a reason. I believe some people are put here to be flickers of light, some a bright candle, and on very rare occurrences, some are put here to be an all out bonfire. Wherever they go, they bring massive light and warmth to all around them.

It has been in my experience of fifty plus years that more than not, these special beacons of light will get snatched in to heaven a bit sooner than we think they should. We would never be ready for them to go, but especially when they are still young and full of life. Now I don’t think that God has favorites, but I do believe that He desires for some of his brightest children to come home a little before their time. But what do I know?

I lost one of these beacons in my own life this week, and I console myself with these: He is home and happy. I was blessed to have known him – it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. And lastly, I will see him again. As I said earlier, this life is just a mist. The older I become, the more I realize this. But when the mist dissipates, it is still there. Just in a different form. I too, will leave this world one day and be reunited with all those precious people in another place or dimension. It is there that I will see all the “bonfire people” who have arrived before me. This will be a great day.

This is in memory of Lonnie Lesley, and all the other Bonfire People who are already in heaven.

What’s New Besides the Year?

clover hill doves in tree

It’s 2015 already and the days seem to run faster and faster.  Before we know it it will be spring, then summer and not long after that, we’ll be looking at 2016.  Let me ask you, where do you want to be when 2016 gets here?  Are you satisfied with how your life is going now?  If not, why not?

Many times we get in a rut to where we continue to do the things we don’t want, but it’s so comfortable because it’s a habit (rut, or familiar pathway in our brain), that we don’t step out of that rut to change what’s not working.  It’s comfortable and it’s easy.  Sometimes easy just feels too good, even when it’s bad.  Huh?

“If we want to change our lives, we must change how we’re living.”

Sounds simple, except it’s not.  Those old and comfortable habits are hard to let go.  They hang on for dear life until we get determined enough to replace them with new actions.  Those new actions will, if done long enough, become new habits.  They will become easier and easier with time and doing.

The hardest part is getting started.  Below I have outlined 8 ways to jumpstart your life.  Do these and you’ll be on your way to making those necessary changes that will bring you a better life – whatever that means to you.

1)  DECIDE WHAT YOU WANT:  A no brainer perhaps, but you’d be surprised at how many people will jump in to something because they think it is the right thing to do.  Maybe it’s what someone else wants for them, or what they think they should do.  You will not put forth the effort needed if you aren’t passionate about what you’re going for.  Decide what you want!  What you really, really want!

2)  MAKE A PLAN:  Once you decide what you want, you must plan on how you can get it.  Without a plan, we are just drifting along with our days leading us rather that us taking charge of our days.  Most people spend more time planning their vacations than they do planning their lives.  Write out a step by step action plan of what to do over the coming days, weeks, and months.  Then refer to it often.

3)  DON’T LISTEN TO THE NEGATIVE NEDS AND NELLIES – Whenever we try to do something better with our lives, it will be inevitable that we will have well meaning friends and family try to dissuade us from doing it.  Why?  I don’t know. But the bigger the plans and dreams the more negativity we will encounter.  Do not be discouraged by this.  Ignore the naysayers.

4)  SEEK AN ADVOCATE/MENTOR:  While you don’t want to listen to negativity, you do want to seek out positive people who will inspire you and nudge you forward.  It’s great to find an accountability partner who will be honest with you, while cheering you on to your goals.  Whether a coach, teacher, or great friend, seek out someone who will walk by your side as you make positive change.  

5)  EXPECT SETBACKS AND DIFFICULTIES:  Yep, it’s going to happen.  You will never obtain anything worth having without them.  Just the way it is.  But look at these as blessings rather than curses.  Albert Einstein said this, “In the middle of every difficulty comes opportunity.”  So embrace your difficulties, grow and move on.

6)  FAIL YOUR WAY FORWARD:  Similar to #5, but know that things aren’t going to be perfect the first go round.  You will fail a little or a lot.  Remember when you first learned to ride a bike?  How did it feel at first?  You were wobbling all over the place and probably fell more than a few times.  It was scary at first.  But then what happened?  You somehow seemed to miraculously just “get it.”  And once you did, you never lost it.  This is failing your way forward.  Failure isn’t a bad word.  Expect it and plow right on through it.  

7)  HAVE AN ATTITUDE OF GRATTITUE:  You’ve heard it before, but our attitudes are tremendous factors for getting us through change.  Be thankful for the opportunities, be thankful for the setbacks, be thankful for the people in your life – even those negative Nellies and Neds I mentioned.  A thankful heart breeds success!

8)  LAST BUT NOT LEAST IS BELIEF:  Your belief that you can change is by far the most effective means of success.  If you don’t believe something is possible, you can work and strive until forever and it won’t happen.  Do what it takes to believe.  Read inspirational material, tell yourself you can – look in the mirror and say, I CAN do this!!  Belief that you can is very powerful.  Always remember this.  

Where will you be when 2016 arrives?  I hope when the next new year arrives, you will be a brand new you and living the life that you are dreaming of today.  Make it happen!!  You CAN do it!

Being a Mary in a Martha World

 

christy field of flowersRecently, I’ve been nudged to just sit, listen and watch the nature around me.  To know that God is in the midst of it.

We live in a Martha world.  A world of doing and going and plotting and planning.  That still, small Voice inside is telling me that I am living too much as a Martha and need to slow it down and BE a Mary.

Funny since I always looked at myself as more the Mary type.  But I’ve discovered I’m not at all.  Jesus can see through us.  Cut through the gunk and the grime and get to the realness of us if we let Him.  I want this for me.  For Him to wash and exfoliate all of me that is self and ego and get to that part of me that is Joy-Filled to just BE in His presence.  Because when we are full of His presence it is only then that we can truly serve.

The most important “thing” we will ever DO is to just Be … in the still presence of God.

Wishing you a “Mary Life” of joy!

Photograph by Christy Staton

Free

This morning I awoke to a beautiful sunrise shining through my window.  I turned over and then turned back not five minutes later and the sky was gray.  Where did it go?  My heart was saddened.  Fog had come in and totally erased the beauty that was there minutes before.  I knew there was something to be learned from this, so I got up and put my thoughts in the poem below.  I hope it speaks to you.

Free

I came from a world that had no pain.
Not much feeling to be obtained.

All of life’s essentials were given for free.
Home, food, clothing, plenty as can be.

We lived and worked where we were assigned.
Lives chosen for us; that was fine.

But though we owed not for essentials,
We never lived to our potentials.

Because though our wages were quite fair;
our hearts never had a prayer.

Blame our sad state on the sunrises;
for they were our greatest prizes.

If only we could afford to see,
their thousands of colors for free.

We had to pay for color, our fate
to live on this planet we hate.

Gray lives, gray skies were given to us;
but it was color that caused a fuss.

Once we saw what these sunrises held,
to have it not, our hearts were impelled.

We spent our last nickel to obtain;
only next day, we had to abstain.

When I came here, I noticed a vice;
it was the mundane that held a price.

From housing, food, water and seed;
for these are all the things we need.

But my heart leaped in gladness supreme
when I could see colors extreme.

I said now this is the world to be;
to see the sunrises for free.

Sunrise

Sunrise

Is Your Calling Locked Away?

Image

Photo by:  Christy Staton

When I first started on my path of finding my authentic self, I searched and read, read and searched some more, to find answers.  It was in this searching that I stumbled across the article below. When I first read this in or around 2007 it spoke to my heart so loudly that I printed it so I could read it over and over.  I eventually boxed it up with a bunch of other papers and while cleaning out some files the other day I came across it once again.  I had to stop right there in the middle of my sorting to read it again.  It still speaks to me and I wanted to share it here with you so much that I tracked down the author, Maureen Finn, to get her permission to do just that.

I feel like some of you will resonate with this as deeply as I do.  I would love to hear your comments on it, and if you get a chance stop by and visit Maureen at one of her web spots.  

http://www.maureenfinn.com/

http://mcfwriter.wordpress.com

http://www.examiner.com/pet-health-in-seattle/maureen-finn

 

Overcoming Fear:  Accepting, Claiming, and Heeding

By Maureen Finn

The call has been there, whispering, scratching, and occasionally shouting and thumping an aggravated fist against the inside of the wooden box where I’ve kept it locked for years.  I fear it.  I fight it.  Even as I know it’s my salvation I don’t know how to claim it, how to do it.  

I spent 20 years learning how to struggle, how to feel like a victim, and then spent the next 20 perfecting what I’d learned, doing things the hard way and naturally reinforcements of this thought process occurred daily.  My wise self keeps telling me that this isn’t how it has to be, this worry about money, this fear of stepping outside the pattern I’ve learned so well.  I read books about how others have escaped the yoke of rat race living, trying to absorb their strength through the ink and paper before me.  I’ve gone to see several of these inspiring beings, hoping that by breathing the same air they were breathing and hearing their inspiring words it would give me the final nudge I needed to open this box I keep locked and unleash the flood of magnificence I know, I know, resides within.  After these stimulating encounters I’m walking two feet off the ground, sure I can join the ranks of the enlightened who live their calling and not only survive but thrive and prosper because of it.  By the time I sit down to unlock the box I somehow doubt all over again, and I’m mired in the fear once more, feeling like I’m trying to run in waist high water.

All this doubt and fear (that I’m not good enough, that I can’t survive financially) leaves my dreams locked in the box, scratching to get out.  Maybe all this doubt means this isn’t “it” for me, that I’m misreading my calling.  For why would I live in fear of that which would set me free – the embracing of my gift, and sharing it with the universe?  But why would I be blessed with this gift, this knowing, if I’m not meant to use it?  Why am I so afraid of it?  I search, I yearn, for the answer.  Meanwhile my calling continues to whisper to me in an admonishment of pop slogan:  just do it, Maureen.  Just write.  And write and write and write.  Write as if your Life depends on it, because, you know, it does.

My name is Maureen Finn.  I’m a writer with a deep appreciation for nature and wildlife, and aspire to use my skills and my passion to enlighten and educate my fellow species in order to protect and preserve the natural world we share.  Saving the Earth is my ultimate calling, and my writing is the path to this calling.  Excuse me while I go chisel at the lock on my wooden box.  

 

 

 

Yeshua’s Cottage

Sometimes when I pray, I imagine walking up a path to a seaside cottage that belongs to Jesus.  He welcomes me in, and I tell him my troubles.  He listens and replies.  You may think this is silly, but He really does!  I hope you will try it sometime.  It’s pretty amazing.

Now I’m not really a poet, but In honor of Easter, I wrote this poem and wanted to share it with you here…

cottage porch

The Cottage of Yeshua
by Connie Wyatt

There is a cottage up on a hill
The ocean below, a path
overlooking flowers in a field.

I walk up the candle lighted trail
I see the door there waiting
on a knock, that my soul may unveil.

He answers! Yeshua! I bow down
He lifts me, come in my child
We sit on a couch that is light brown.

He takes my hand, a comfort to me
and says tell me your troubles
I want to free you of trials that be.

Tears run down my checks. My awesome Lord!
Father, help me unlock the
truth with all goodness you will afford.

Relax dear sister, for I am here
with you all the time; never
in a hundred years should you sense fear.

You aren’t supposed to figure it out.
That’s not your job, it is mine.
I’ll keep you, I’ll lead you for all time.

He held me and wiped away my tears.
Walked me to the door and said,
I never leave you, so no more fear.

Come back often, I wait day and night
for my children to call me.
It’s how they will win this earthly fight.

Remember, always remember this:
I love you with all my heart;
As you go, I send with you my bliss.

 

Happy Easter Everyone!