Today I'm grateful for:
the ability to know the difference between living simply and simply living.
my life. Like everyone else I have my ups and my downs but each night, when I go to bed and say my prayers, no matter how I perceived the day as I was moving thought it, I could say to the Lord "Thank you for this wonderful day" and not be guilty of lying. I've grown enough to see through the haze of perception. I've learned to focus.
knowing I'm not alone. Others out there are light years ahead of me, some are by my side and still others are just beginning to take baby steps on this journey to a positive, fulfilling and grateful life. I'm happy to have the company.
a reversal of judgment. I no longer judge others with perception; I'm working on not judging myself that way. If you're a jerk, I will assume you are being a jerk to ME on THIS occasion. I will not assume you were raised by a back of wild dogs, eat with your feet, pick your nose and have no redeeming value to society. Given the circumstance, I may hit you in the head with the fluffy pillow of hot pinkness, or I may just tell you calmly that you are being a jerk. It all depends on the mood wave of the moment. (Seriously, I've stowed the sporks. Don't look so concerned.)
making it to lunch. Given my light breakfast of yogurt, a banana and a fiber bar, I was sure I'd die from hunger before I made it. Now I dine on 1/2 a wheat bread Peanut butter samich and some "lite" Progresso chicken & Rice soup. Wonder if I'll make it to dinner?
faith. I WILL make it to dinner.
forgiveness. I forgot to say my morning prayers. I know I was forgiven before I ever forgot. Makes me want to say my prayers all the more.
When I first started this whole "I want to change my life" thing, I was humble. I took an easy concept, attached a bunch of rules to it, told myself it was all or nothing, and hung on for dear life. The fact that I've lasted 3 years is more a testament to God's love than my strength.
Then, slowly, my life began to change and morph, and change some more. The evolution is clearly evident if you go back to the beginning of my journal but really, who has that kind of disposable time? Anyway, if you were to go back, you would see that for awhile, life changing moments, lessons and AHA! type realizations were coming so fast I could scarcely process them. This wealth of knowledge and wisdom was being rained down on me and I began to lose my humility. I began to think like a youngster - "I have ALL the answers. Don't believe me? Well just ask me, I'll tell ya"
Now, further into this journey, my humility is returning. When I look back at some of my journal entries and lists, I just shake my head and think "WHAT a Stupidhead!" I see now how arrogant I was. I still believe with all my being that happiness is a choice. What I've learned is that it's rarely an easy choice. Life is simple if you let it be simple but letting it be simple is not simple. It is in our nature to pick, and prod and complicate a life till it is no longer recognizable. Living simply takes concentrated effort but with practice, the effort can be not only enjoyable, but graceful and beautiful.
*raises a glass of water*
Here's to you my friends who have reached the point of grace. I follow behind you taking notes, making memories and learning the lessons you so graciously teach. I pray to be as humble a teacher to those behind me as you have been to me. I may never reach the point of perfection but I've learned that the joy is in the striving. I know that when the journey comes to an end it will have been well worth it.