…And So Much More

An hour ago I stopped at Baskin and Robbin’s for an ice cream cone on my way home. Today is utterly spectacular without a single cloud in the sky and a comfortable temperature around 70 degrees. It was an easy choice to enjoy my treat on a bench out front of the store.

The ice cream shop is in a strip center near one the busiest shopping zones in town that includes a big mall across the street. As I sat back enjoying one dip each of strawberry and butter pecan, a consistent, but gentle breeze brushed across my arms and face. A nearby restaurant was having a “biker day” where weekend riders could co-mingle, enjoy a live band and purchase lots of ‘beer and wings’. When I first sat down it was “Come Together” from the Beatles “Abbey Road” album the band at the event was knocking out (and doing a fine job of it too!). Looking up at the pristinely blue and cloudness sky I was stuck by a strong sense of gratitude.  It was a delicious epiphany about the richness of my life.  There is so much…

I am healthy and able to be outside under my own power.
I have a car to drive and can provide gas to power it.
I have the financial resources to have most anything, within reason, that I desire.
I have close friends like the one I spent a few hours with today looking at old records.
I love ice cream, especially strawberry, butter pecan, vanilla and black walnut.
…and so much more.

Such moments present true clarity about life. Through keeping my epiphany front of my mind and putting a post it note on my fridge and bathroom mirror, I want to remind myself of today’s inspiration moment.

LOOK AT YOUR HAND. Take a closer look. The skin, the nails, the fine hairs, the breathing pores, the fine bones beneath the surface. No hand like this ever existed since creation began. Your own hand – UNIQUE. Let the hand stand for you: your existence, inimitable, unprecedented. The mystery of you being here. You, who have a particular history, a biography, as well as a biology. You have countless stories, memories, intuitions and desires within you. You are the AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A MIRACLE !!” (Howard Cooper from The Alphabet of Paradise)

Both abundance and lack exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend…when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that’s present–love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature and personal pursuits that bring us pleasure–the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience Heaven on earth. (Sarah Ban Breathnach)

Gratitude, like faith, is a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it grows, and the more power you have to use it on your behalf. If you do not practice gratefulness, its benefaction will go unnoticed, and your capacity to draw on its gifts will be diminished. To be grateful is to find blessings in everything, This is the most powerful attitude to adopt, for there are blessings in everything. (Alan Cohen)

When I allow myself to “just be” life brings me to the best moments. I only have to stop (the most difficult), look (and really see) and listen (pay close attention to what I am hearing) to find a momentary peace that always takes me to gratefulness.

Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more.
If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.
Oprah Winfrey