Niagara Falls

Image courtesy of  dexchao/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I don’t know if it is the new year,  the recent extreme cold, the gray over-cast rainy day, or just the roving thoughts of a restless mind, but I find myself wondering this afternoon about where I find hope, comfort, and reassurance in my life. Granted, I am more self-validated than ever before, but, as does any human, I do need intermittent reassurance and comfort from a source other than myself.

I know in times of extreme duress I have found comfort in gazing at God’s creation. For example, on 9/11 I was in a hotel room in Canada with a bunch of women who served on an International Board of Directors with me. We had all rushed to a room where we could watch television and comfort each other when our meeting was interrupted by the news that the twin towers had been intentionally flown into by a plane filled with passengers. Several of the women were from the New York area. There were expressions of numbness, disbelief, and shock mirrored in the faces that surrounded me. I could not comfort these women or myself, for that matter.

I found myself looking out the window down at Niagara Falls. At that moment, I knew God had created this world and all the wonders in it, including myself and these women. I thought of all the trauma, war, pain, beauty, awe, and joy these falls had witnessed and survived over time, and I was comforted. I knew, awful as it was, this time would pass and that, come what may, God would be with us. We would and did comfort each other then and in the days to come, but God was the first to comfort me, and I am sure many in that room were also comforted by God in those harrowing moments.

What does this have to do with where I find my current source of hope, reassurance and comfort? Well,  if God is so strongly with me in times of crisis, I know he is with me always. All I have to do to tap into that well of comforting love is to be aware of it and consent to letting it enfold me. I am learning to do this in prayer, and I am delighted that I think this practice is beginning to contaminate other parts of my daily living that are not focused on intentional prayer. God’s love is always there, always comforting, and all powerful. In my life, I have been the only thing standing in the way blocking my ability to access that love.

I am learning, even when engaged in simple tasks such as washing dishes or doing laundry, to turn my thoughts away from how I can solve problems or do something all by myself and to redirect my thoughts to a more receptive “channel” that will let me acknowledge and accept God’s love and intention for me. It is very pleasant to be enfolded in God’s love and reassured that I am where I am supposed to be doing what I am supposed to do—–even  when I am “caught up in the mundane.” Ironically, when my soul, mind, and heart are in the “right place” and “right sized” there is no “mundane.” There is only God’s creation, love, and intent, and just “being” in a situation where my self-centered thoughts are quieted and redirected to God’s love is nothing short of a miracle.

Enjoy our melted ice and falling rain today. I am even looking forward to thunder in January. May God bless and keep you.

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