Readers who know of my love for baseball may assume the title question has to do with all the post-season yelling I’ve been doing here in Dallas for the Texas Rangers. As much as I’d like to make this post a baseball analogy, I have more pressing concerns on my mind.
This week’s Mindful Monday post described “getting at it,” that is, figuring out what makes your heart soar and then doing it. Myrtle Fillmore, the co-founder of the Unity spiritual movement, spoke the words I repeated on Monday and as I hope they have for you, the words stuck with me this week
As we push into Friday, I feel pushed back because my Truth befuddles me.
Myrtle said, “Get busy using the Truth you know. Love those about you in a practical way; pay no attention to what others are doing, in so far as to make comparisons. Bring forth your own joyous world of love, friendship, beauty and plenty. God is giving everything required to build such a world. There is within you the God-given intelligence to build such a world. Get at it!”
Why do I say my Truth befuddles me?
Because I don’t know how to vocalize it. I can’t seem to put words to my Truth. I feel like I’m stumbling around trying to speak but instead I stop, stare for awhile, open my mouth as if to utter something–anything about my Truth–and then I close my mouth.
What am I doing here? Myrtle admonishes me to display my “own joyous world of love, friendship, beauty and plenty.”
Don’t I need to find my voice first?
I really do want to get at it, but lacking a voice seems to paralyze my actions.
I think I know what I want to do–grow B Here Today into a world-wide conversation around matters of mindfulness and presence of the heart and then build the B Here On Purpose brand to help folks lock in purposeful mindfulness in all areas of life.
I open my mouth to speak and close it again because I feel overwhelmed by technology, overcome by confusion, pain and suffering among people I love dearly and overwrought by weariness.
No wonder I can’t find my voice.
I’m just being honest here, folks. I desperately want to speak my Truth but I feel muffled.
Can anyone relate? Can you feel what I’m trying to describe? Can you share how you move deeper past the vocal blockages, so a whisper, scream or shout will emerge?
Or is this simply a time to be quiet, to wait until my voice instinctively knows it’s time to come forth?
Can anybody speak to me?
“Get busy using the Truth you know. Love those about you in a practical way; pay no attention to what others are doing, in so far as to make comparisons. Bring forth your own joyous world of love, friendship, beauty and plenty. God is giving everything required to build such a world. There is within you the God-given intelligence to build such a world. Get at it!”
– From “How to Let God Help You,” by Myrtle Fillmore
Last week marked the 80th anniversary of the death of Myrtle Fillmore, the woman credited with co-founding (along with her husband Charles), Unity, known as the positive and prayerful Christianity movement.
Last week also saw the death of Steve Jobs, the talented and innovative creator of Apple. This is the quote that was circling a couple of days after he died:
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”
Isn’t it amazing how similar the quotes are? Two great visionaries who boldly dared to believe in their dreams and to fully own the truth of their beings.
My question–with two follow-ups–to you on this Mindful Monday is this:
Are you doing the same?
If not, why not? Don’t you think it’s time?
Let’s break down Myrtle’s words into our daily doses for the work week.
1. Get busy using the Truth you know.
2. Love those about you in a practical way; pay no attention to what others are doing, in so far as to make comparisons.
3. Bring forth your own joyous world of love, friendship, beauty and plenty.
4. God is giving everything required to build such a world.
5. There is within you the God-given intelligence to build such a world. Get at it!”
Amen! Now get at it!
Gi-normous blessings to you.
B Well & Present,
You’re probably thinking, What The Heck ?
I know–the title is a strange one, but appropriate to anyone who has:
- Made a really big deal out of something that is insignificant to everyone else on the planet;
- Jumped to an immediate biased conclusion without considering other available data or inputs;
- Completely over-reacted to a comment, opinion or statement.
- In general, made an ass of yourself simply by opening your mouth and allowing ill-spoken words to escape.
Congratulations. You’ve taken up the sport of pole-vaulting over mouse poop.
No worries, though. I can help because I have TONS of experience with this sport. You might say I’m a mouse poop hall-of-famer.
My dearest friends will tell you I’m intense which is code to mean that I tend to take things way too seriously.
I’m working on it and have, for the most part, graduated from the vaulting pole to a yard stick.
I’m sharing five of my hard-fought lessons, one for each day this week.
In the tradition of Mindful Monday, you can choose to apply all five to each day of the week or take one for Monday, a second for Tuesday, and so on.
Without further ado, Beth’s Yardstick Lessons for Getting Over the Mouse Poop in Your Life Without a Vaulting Pole:
Lesson #1: Remember that there are no big deals.
Yes, it’s tempting to believe that your current misfortune is catastrophic, but ask yourself whether it truly is from an outer space perspective.
Lesson #2: Forrest Gump was right: Life IS a box of chocolates.
What you believe to be mouse poop today–those little crappy details–by tomorrow may hold sweet, nougat-filled lessons. Yes, it can happen.
Lesson #3: What you see in front of you is not really real.
Admittedly, this lesson is a bit heady, but because this is my experience, I’m sharing it. In my heart, I believe that only good exists, because only God exists. Ergo, anything that is not of God, doesn’t exist and isn’t real. Got it?
Lesson #4: Once a mouse has pooped, there is no un-pooping.
What is done is done and can’t be undone. Accept that the stuff exists and work on how you’re going to deal with it rather than dealing with how you react to it. Make sense?
And, finally, my big Lesson #5: Know the difference between what you can change and what you can’t.
This is the coolest part of the Serenity Prayer to me–when God grants me the wisdom to know what I can change and what I need to let go. Yes, the line is a little blurred sometimes, but if I look hard, I can see the distinction.
As with any sport, it takes continual practice to learn how to not pole vault over the poopy little details of your life. For many years, I assumed that the methods with which I had always dealt with something were ingrained in me and that I would forever handle situations in the way I always had.
Not so! You can un-learn too!
Are there other ways you’ve how to lay down the vaulting pole? Please share because when we learn how to effectively overcome mouse poop, we can move on to the piles of the larger mammals in our lives.
May your Mindful Monday be Mouse Poop-free!
B Well & Present,
This morning’s attitude could go either way.
I could easily carry forward some of yesterday’s emotional exhaustion and run with it to continue to let the pissy people walk through my today.
Or, I can make a decision to do two things:
1) Let the conversations from yesterday stay in the past, and 2) Wear protective armor today.
Remember the scripture about the armor of God? While I don’t normally make it a practice to quote the Big Big Book, as some folks call it, Ephesians 6:11-18 is one of my favorite passages.
I love the first line which speaks about putting on the armor of God. The metaphor gives me a choice and grants me responsibility for whether I put it on. When I do, I am shielded from the slings and arrows of the world outside of me.
Isn’t that a beautiful image?
A shield that protects my inner core–my heart and what I feel, my lungs and what I breathe, my abdomen and how I process all the stuff I take in.
These words give me the option to clothe myself in spiritual fabric so that I may release control of solo-fighting the battles I perceive. With that release, I receive strength. Another one of life’s conundrums.
I like knowing I’m protected–when I choose to be–and like so many other points in my life, all I need do is make a decision.
On this Mindful Monday
I encourage you to take this beautiful vision from Ephesians and let it work for you each day this week. I’ve broken it down into five parts, but you’re always welcome to use them in total all week. There are no rules except the ones you choose to live by!
1. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
2. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace.
3. Above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.
4. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
5. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.
I’m reminded that I must be ever vigilant.
My ego–which means Edging God Out–is oh-so-patient. And while the doing-battle imagery may not be politically correct, and I’ve struggled with it in the past, it is a fact (for me) that I’m often at war with my own thoughts, feelings and beliefs.
Go forward this week in strength, my peeps. Blessings to you as you fight your good fights.
B Well & Present,
“Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole.
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.”
From Invictus by William Ernest Henley
I had to memorize the poem, “Invictus,” in my 8th grade English class and it remains my all-time favorite.
My blogging colleague, Alex Blackwell, of The BridgeMaker, reminded me of the words to “Invictus” after he wrote a well-received post recently called, “Don’t Rent Your Life, Own It.” (find his post here: http://www.thebridgemaker.com/dont-rent-your-life-own-it/)
My take-away from Alex’s post
We too often simply show up for our lives with little thought given to how we are responsible for each decision, every attitude and ultimately, how we live each day. He described how he used to give away so much of his power and I thought, YES! Me too.
Alex’s words really resonated with me (so much so that I wrote to him and asked if I could write a guest post for his readers) because he writes about savoring every moment and finding joy in the simple and mundane.
I decided to take a stab at his invitation to write a Life Ownership Contract.
I invite you to do the same.
What I know–and what I believe for you
When I take 100% responsibility for every aspect of my life–I find freedom. I no longer blame others for the perceived wrongs done to me. I quit judging others’ actions because I see what they do as the choices they get to make. If I have a run of what could be seen as crappy circumstances, I sit back and ask myself whether a belief, thought or feeling I’m holding is attracting the current situation and if not, what can I learn and then pass on to someone else?
Life doesn’t happen to me unless I allow it. Period. End of story.
The caveat is I too often allow myself to forget that life doesn’t happen to me. That’s why Alex’s idea of a Life Ownership Contract is so brilliant.
Are you willing to write a contract and share it? There really are no parameters; I chose 12 agreements because I love the number 12 and already live by 12 Steps. Yours can be as simple or as detailed as you’d like.
My Life Ownership Contract
1. I agree to remember the Trinity: God, myself, others.
2. I agree to respond rather than react.
3. I agree to allow transparency when it is appropriate.
4. I agree to treat people and animals with respect and dignity.
5. I agree to honor my entire self–from the inside out.
6. I agree to not take myself too seriously and to laugh often.
7. I agree to walk lightly and appreciate my steps.
8. I agree to be present to the people, places and circumstances before me.
9. I agree to always believe in miracles and to know that size doesn’t matter.
10. I agree to put love ahead of everything else.
11. I agree to say what I mean and mean what I say and to use words judiciously.
12. I agree to remember that others’ thoughts, attitudes and opinions are none of my business and to remember to accept responsibility for my own.