Stop – whatever you are doing right now – just stop. Now think…what was last year like on this day? What about 5 years ago? 10 years? I can’t even remember a lot of yesterday so my handy dandy Timehop app is a lifesaver. It’s a bittersweet app – like this beauty from 8 years ago – sweet 4G field trip…and look at that young girl…I was a mere 38yo lol. But it’s also a great roadmap – a glance over where we’ve been through the years on this day in history.
This morning, last year, I blogged about LAST and slowing down – it was “the last” morning to drive Evan to school. Little did I know, that morning, that within months, our lives would look completely different. So much of the time we assume that how things are will continue on and on. But the more I think about it – I don’t think we think about it at all – we rush through our days without much thought or reflection at all.
A critical principle of mindful meditation is learning to stay in the moment…and the emotions. Imagine sitting on your back patio as a storm rolls in – you can see it happening – you might even marvel at how the clouds swell, roll, and darken. And at some point the rain and wind pickup and do their thing until finally the storm passes. You appreciate the storm and then you move on.
That is what meditation is teaching me – to observe, hold, be curious about feelings and emotions – WITHOUT grasping or pushing away. We want to grasp on to the good times and feelings. We also sometimes want to grasp our righteous anger – we deserve to be mad we say – it even feels good and powerful. And then, sometimes we simply want to grasp our current way of dealing with emotions because that’s what we know and change is hard and scary. And sometimes, we even feel – you are the one who needs to change – not me – I’m good. Then, there is the whole push away/numbing temptation – I blogged on much of that during October – uncomfortable feelings are well, uncomfortable. Fear, in particular, can grab me by the throat and color all of my decisions and relationships…which brings us back to where we started this morning.
On the surface, if you didn’t know us well our life looks like it took a terrible left turn, off the cliff, and burst into flames (feeling a little dramatic this morning – maybe I’ll work on a novel next) – but really, our life IS challenging but it’s also great. First off, we’re all here together. And when I say together – I mean we’re all in and on the same team. Secondly, the Matthews peeps are showing up and growing up…fully and fiercely … taking care of business. And finally, our lives have been blessed with SO MANY wonderful and incredible people and James and I have been honored to be a blessing to others. Isn’t that the good stuff of life – walking with and loving others. I really don’t think you can be very good at that until you’ve walked through some fire yourself.
But as I’m sure you’ve surmised – it could all look different again tomorrow. Last night Evan and I were discussing recovery time and I reminded him that he and I had the same time – we both had that same 24 hours on Dec 7, 2016. The only thing you can know for sure is this very moment. So…
Pray and give thanks.
Love your loves.
Good grief – smile and laugh – let that sh*t go.
Don’t grasp. Don’t numb.
Don’t hurry through the bad or the day. Know the storm will pass.
And finally, when the fear of the future threatens today’s moment, take a deep breath and remember Ps 62:2…
Yes, he alone is my Rock, my rescuer, defense and fortress. Why then should I be tense with fear when troubles come?
xoxox – DM
A Christmas that Whispers, Jesus