One of the things I am doing to increase my writing is to be inspired by other blog writers. One blogger I like is Glennon Doyle Melton, who is the author of Carry On Warrior– personal stories of her life and reflections on finding God in the midst of everything.
Awhile back, Glennon was talking about a rough patch that she was in, and this is what she wrote:
My minister taught me recently that the word disaster means dis (absence of) and astron (stars). And so things are only disastrous when no light can be found anywhere. I caught the light all day yesterday. – See more at: http://momastery.com/blog/2014/01/page/2/#sthash.0yaF4KSo.dpuf
I love the idea of catching light- recognizing that the stars are shining all around you and all you have to do is notice! The best way to see the light is to be present to it all day long. And if that doesn’t work, then it is important to reflect at the end of the day.
As a recovering perfectionist, I often fall back into self- criticism, especially on days when I am working only from home, where I am not connected to other people who support me, and the only voice I listen to is the critical one inside my head. It is difficult for me to see the light when I have been listening to my own self telling me I am not doing enough, or that what I do isn’t important. I get lost when I want to DO so much, instead of focusing on BEING my best.
It reminds me of the struggle I had long ago when I was sick, and I thought I would never see the light again. There was so much darkness and it was only when others reminded me to look for good that I was able to see my healing progress, or the pieces of light that shone brightly.
These days, pieces of light come in the form of Tony’s smile when he walks in the door, my dog Sophie at my feet, reminding me it is time to go outside to ground myself in love, Skype dates with the girls, blog posts that come from Samoa and/or India. I am filled with light when I see how our three daughters are sharing their own light in the world, making their own way, creating their own lives. Light also shows up in the form of morning sunrises and prayer, visits with friends, playing cards with my parents, a friend who offers to host a birthday party. There are days when I get to discover the little pieces of light, like when I am grateful for a computer that runs well, or a freshly- washed car full of gas.
Lines from a poem written in one of my journals long ago express the concern I sometimes feel:
Where are you when I cannot see you?
Do you hide from me?
Outside is dark, and I am afraid.
I need you here, I need your strength.
Please God, lift up the shade of my heart.
Show me the window through which the sun shines.
It is a matter of perspective. Do we choose to only see the darkness? Or do we choose to look closer and see the good, see the sparks of light that, like candles in the night, can illuminate our path? Where do you see light today?