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Be Here NowSeptember 17, 2013
"Why pray when you can worry?" When I first spotted this sign posted by a local church, I laughed in recognition. Now I realize it is no laughing matter. Worry has arisen unbidden (and unwelcome) for me lately. Wondering what our future holds since we are in limbo on rather large questions, such as where we will be living in six months. Will our house sell or not? A crisis with a family member. Uncertainty. The unknown.
Worry is a child of fear, and fear is a function of ego. It does not come from the soul. In my reflections today, it comes to me that worry is the ego's frail attempt to control. Dwelling on the what-if's is trying to plot a course when one doesn't even know what ground one will be occupying. It is a huge distraction.
The expression shared by a First Nations elder when we were back in Canada recently comes to mind. EGO is "Edging God Out".
I am doing my best to have compassion for myself in this time of unknowing, to trust the leap of Faith Dan and I have made. To hold to gratitude for the fact that at this age, we are still resilient and resourceful enough to cope with whatever comes. At the same time, I want to escape the dangers inherent in worry, one of which is that when my energy and thoughts are focused on the future, and I am afloat in anxiety, I am squandering the blessings of the present moment. I am ignoring and losing the truth of my experience. For me, that is being on an island paradise, amongst people I love and enjoy, in the midst of indescribable beauty. Who gets to spend months in paradise?
I have noticed that whenever worry gets a grip on my mind, I cannot possibly live in the moment. I am not here, to witness, to savour, to love, to serve, to be.
So I pray the worry and laugh at the fact that I can do one or the other, but hardly both. I invite trust and above all, I welcome the opportunities to be of service, which was the original purpose of our coming here. And what virtue do I get in my pick today? Service, which "makes my life a prayer".
I'm off now to see what this day holds for me, out in the sun, to feel the south sea breezes, to be with my husband, to visit with friends, to see what opportunities for service arise. I already cleaned out the fridge and left the scraps for the neighbor's pigs, and I wrote this blog. So maybe that's enough. Maybe as the day unfolds, I can be simply present to its gifts.