Thursday, April 8, 2010


If you let someone into your heart they are going to find out what is there. 

I have been thinking about a saying that goes something like...."never let the urgent crowd out the important."  Sometimes people and moments jump into our lives that are quite extraordinary.  If recognized, these moments become quiet, precious gifts that provide a place where change begins.  Sometimes these moments can appear out of nowhere, thunderous and loud, jarring us from the mediocre. 

Then once in a while these moments are often found tucked gently away inside a teardrop...or a smile.

It is in these moments that you will find that negativity and bitterness have been a poison, not worthy of belief. You awaken to find you are meant to be exactly where you are, and that this moment is as important as all others in your life.  Accept that nothing is ever quite like we expect it to be.  It is in some moments that time seems to progress in a deliberate slow passage.  And then there are the times when life opens to us as a star shooting through the heavens, and we want to shake all of the goodness out of and not miss a second.

Do me a favor today.  Listen.  Close your eyes and listen.  Tell me what you hear.  Listen to the rain tapping on the ground.  Listen to the morning doves awakening.  Listen to your heart beating slowly. Listen to jet engine in the distance. Pay no attention to the things you should do - just listen.  Listen to the voice of someone you love.   Listen to what scares you.  Listen to what makes you smile.  Listen to an ambulance or police siren.  Listen to the hum of your computer or the dogs toe nails on the tile floor.  Listen to the phone ring. Listen to a car engine and the clothes dryer.  Listen to the rhythm of your life.  Listen to how you feel as you do this.

I have a friend that habitually practices this.  A soldier, he is vigilant, he is acutely aware, he is observant, he misses nothing.  Deployed twice, he has had to be.  He is alive; it has served him well, and those under him. 

I have learned from him. There are times I listen and find a lump in my throat.  For in doing this you become aware - you become alive.  You recognize conflict and importance.  You recognize who you are.  You recognize responsibility, liability, fear of being alone, fear of connection, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of the next step you take being the wrong one or the right one, fear of today or tomorrow.  In this place, you can't escape your thoughts and feelings

I have also learned that it is in listening that your heart will guide you. It whispers, so listen closely. 

Live the questions.  Wait for the answers. Live in the moment.

Too many people are running for their lives and at the same time escaping them.  Not everything has to be resolved.  Let it be unresolved.  It is okay.  It is more human, more exact.  It is what is there.  There is a kernel of that in all of us.  There will always be new mistakes to make and always regrets.  But there will also be awareness that happiness exists and joy and fun and life.  Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath and leap out of your comfort zone with no safety net below.  On the way down you will have doubts and fears but then an exhilaration that is profound and intense and you will know that no matter the result you lived.  You lived in that place and time and you wouldn't have done it any other way.

In a survey it was found that 95% of people are unhappy in their lives and don't know why they are here.  I know why I am here.  It has taken the better part of my life to arrive at this destination, and the journey has been anything but smooth.  But the good news is - I know. 

I asked my friend last night in a late night conversation why the soldiers, without exception, always thank me for my service, almost as if theirs had been inconsequential.  He responded that it is their families, their moms, dads, kids, wives, girlfriends, and friends that serve back home.  For without them here, without us here, without our prayers and help and committment to them, they couldn't do their job.  Then I understood. Now I understand.  Now I am even more dedicated to these men and women who willingly put themselves in harm's way and return to us different people.  Return to us in a country that is free because of their sacrifices and because of our love and service to them.  For these words I am grateful.  For this understanding I am blessed.  For my friend I am indebted, thankful, and appreciative for his service, for his sacrifices, for his losses, for his gains, for his strength and for his trust.  I will not betray it.

Today put your ear to your heart and pay attention, hear, listen. You might just be surprised what you find buried deep inside. Then do it tomorrow and the next day and then make a practice of it.  Stop your self defeating behaviors and simply listen.


"The graveyards and cemeteries are the richest plots of  land in the world, because that is where people and their dreams are buried."
Les Brown

"If I keep a green bough in my heart, then the singing bird will come."
Chinese Proverb
"Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart ... Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens."
Carl Jung
"One of the hardest things in life is having words in your heart that you can't utter."
James Earl Jones

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