it’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. ~henry david thoreau
a few weeks after my big empty-nest meltdown, one afternoon i happened to notice the pot of violas by my backdoor. to be honest it’s fullness caught me by surprise…all i did was throw few leftover little plants in there. my original plan had been to go back to the garden center to get a few more things to fill it out a little better, but then a huge project at work came up and i had basically forgotten all about it.
anyway, standing there that day, i couldn’t believe how in just a few weeks those five little viola plants had grown and filled in all the empty spaces. and then, as if being wrapped in my Heavenly Father’s loving arms, the sweetest words came to me, “all they needed was a little time and some room to grow.”
and so i decided to take a cue from the Master Gardener. leave those empty spaces in my own life. tend to my little pot with faith and gratitude. and give it some time and space to grown.
i do not at all understand the mystery of grace – only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us. ~anne lamott
looking back, i can see where this change in perspective is yet another example of how when i freaking stopped trying so hard to figure out my shit out – to let things go, to sit with uncertainty, to be uncomfortable – it created space for a new way of seeing things. and in that moment…finally…it was the day that i began to see things differently.
when i am old and gray, this day and the day in my garden where i discovered my purpose…these i will look back upon as two of the most pivotal moments in my life. the thing is, in both of these instances, it wasn’t because either of the circumstances changed. there was no giant loud voice crying out from the sky downloading me with all the answers that i was seeking. in fact, it was exactly the opposite…nothing more than a quiet whisper from my heart asking me to embrace uncertainty. but in both of those situations, the healing – the grace – came from seeing things differently.
from a life with no clear purpose, it is permission to just be. from an empty nest, to a life with a little growing room. the key is in the way you look at it.
and so to my Heavenly Father, for the gift, the grace – learning to see – i am eternally and profoundly grateful.
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