Each morning I wake up, make my coffee and send out texts to friends and family to let them know that someone is thinking of them. It started with a few friends that I knew were going through things and they reminded me that a simple morning text at times was what got them through the day. My list has changed over the years, some have been added, others removed but it’s been part of my morning routine for several years now. After I say my good mornings in hopes of starting the day off on a positive note for friends and family, I go to Facebook and post a morning laugh and a morning thought.
Over the years I have received feedback that these thoughts and laughs have made people smile, think, reflect, hope and dream. And, while I started these posts for myself, I continued it daily as a result of the feedback that something as simple as these posts somehow had value to others who visited my page.
The other day I posted a morning thought that life was a series of thousands of miracles…and it challenged people to notice them. It was not really a profound thought, but as my day went on I did realize it is very needed in today’s world.
That night I turned on the news. Those that know me know that I try stay away from the media monster, but I know it’s still important to know the pulse of things going on in the world to help me keep a grounded perspective on the things important to me.
Highlights of the news reports that night were impeachment trials, covid mutations, inclement weather patterns, economic woes, sporadic stock markets, and a divided country. We are living in some pretty scary times. I’ve seen how the combination of all these things have caused countless people to worry, stress, lose sleep, wonder and even fear each passing day.
With everything going on in such a socially connected world it’s easy to get consumed with the drama and woes of everything unfolding. It’s easy to see the problems. They are real. They have an impact on us, financially, emotionally, spiritually, physically.
The hard part isn’t seeing the issues. The hard part isn’t the wonder of what to do. The hard part isn’t even the fear of what’s next. From my experiences, the hardest part is stopping the cycle. The hardest part sometimes is simply… just stopping.
It’s cliche at best to say stop worrying, even if we know that could be the simplest answer. It’s not easy to stop in a world that’s made for speed. And, we have been taught all our lives things like the early bird gets the worm, work harder, stand strong, don’t back down, give an inch they expect a mile. It’s not a wonder why life causes stress with philosophies like this. We expect things as a result of our hard work, we anguish over what we don’t have instead of stopping to appreciate all that we do.
After I hastily turned the news off, I took the dog out for his nightly walk and…I stopped. I stopped and looked at the sky and actually paid attention to the colors of the setting sun. I saw a mated cardinal and appreciated their commitment to each other as they sat in the tree. I took in a breath of fresh air and made a conscience effort to realize the feeling it gave me as the cool air filled my lungs. I noticed the days getting longer…the grass getting greener. I stopped.
When I returned to the house I remembered the thought I posted for the day…Life is a series of thousands of miracles…notice them. It really resonated with me. Too often we look at what we want different instead of counting the blessing in what we already have.
Noticing these miracles didn’t change the impeachment trials, they didn’t influence the stock market and it hasn’t changed the pandemic…but it did change my perspective and, that was the point. By looking at the miracles in everyday life, it demonstrates how the other things are relatively insignificant in the big picture.
So today, I wanted to challenge each reader to simply stop. Stop and notice the little things. Find your miracles…count your blessings…change what you can control and simplify your life. Be bold in how your act towards others and yourself. Continue to grow. Love hard. Live free. Notice for yourself how blessed you are.
What tiny miracles are you missing out on?
~ Joe Jr.