I saw lots of beautiful things at the river the other day. There was rushing water exploding over rocks and branches and pushing the boundaries of the riverbank with it’s powerful force. There were blues and greens and browns and even some reds in the trees. And then, there was this beautiful little violet. In January? Yep. In January. I guess the warm weather had coaxed it from staying underground. It emerged from the vast covering of brown leaves and was a sweet little breath of fresh air to see. Fragile, beautiful, unexpected.
I was thankful that I wasn’t in the mode that I so often am….busy, moving fast, rushing, kind of like the waters that were moving fast downstream. No, on this day, I was deliberately choosing time to think, pray, write. If I hadn’t been in that mode, I’m certain I would’ve moved past that little violet and never even seen it, or heaven-forbid, even stomped it out unknowingly. And then, that fragile, beautiful, unexpected surprise would’ve been missed. Was it a big earth shaking event? Of course not. Did it give me joy and make me pause and smile? Yep, it did. Just a little violet.
So here’s the thing. I’m hopeful for a new year. Haven’t made any resolutions (and honestly, don’t plan to…) But I’m hopeful. I’m hopeful that I can plan, be efficient, yada, yada, yada, ….SO THAT I can be in the moment and make the most of my days. I want to be in the moment so as not to miss the fragile, the beautiful, the unexpected gifts in life. I don’t want to rush through, even though there will always be lots of busy-ness. I don’t want to trample through life unaware. I just want to be like that little violet…growing, beautiful, reaching toward the Light, giving hope to others. And that won’t happen if I’m like that river rushing through, always moving, making noise, thundering through, but never impacting. God only knows I’ve probably missed countless moments in the lives of those I love, those I work with, etc, simply because I was rushing, and my mind was two steps ahead instead of right where I am. And worse than rushing is worry. Phew…worry about tomorrow makes it really impossible to miss out on the little blessings in the here and now becuase we’re so focused on what will be rather than what is.
I’m thankful that God gives us that picture of being just that. In the moment. The “I Am”, not “I was” or “I will be”. God is the “I Am” in the here and now. Available. Aware. Present. I think keeping that in mind will help me to not trample through my days, my moments like a bull in a china shop…surrounded by beauty, but totally unaware and ill-equipped to enjoy it. I think knowing that God is right here in the here and now helps keep things in perspective…not just with regards to life goals and hopes and dreams and all that, but even just with regards to being able to stop and smile at the little things, the gifts, the people that surround us.
So here’s to the beauty…the fragile, the unexpected surprises in lives. Whether it be seeing a purple violet, or getting a call from a long lost friend, or receiving a pat on the back from a co-worker…here’s to being able to take it all in, one little itty bitty moment at a time. Here’s to being aware, being available, being present, be-ing period. And here’s to being like that little violet…unexpected, present, … one little blast of beauty and life in a sea of brown crunchy lifeless leaves. Here’s to blooming in a world that often rushes past the little violets. Here’s to blooming any way because we were created to bloom, not merely to be seen. Here’s to hope that blooms where it’s planted. Here’s to a year of doing just that. Not because we want to be seen….merely because we were created to grow…and when we do, that’s a beautiful thing.
“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”
Matthew 6:28, 29