Monday, January 31, 2011
Lightning in a Bottle
Yes, you read that correctly. I said “happy”.
I’m feeling great today. Had a terrific weekend. Spent some time with someone I haven’t seen in almost 17 years (since high school), and I’m still smiling.
I just love those little spontaneous, out-of-the-blue, impulsive moments in life. You know, those instant little pick-me-ups that seem to halt you in your tracks and suddenly steer you in the opposite direction from where you were headed. Or where you thought you were headed. Ever heard the saying “Life is what happens when you’re making plans”? It is stuck at the forefront of my brain, and it reminds me to expect the unexpected and appreciate those little hints when God says, “Um, you silly control freak, pay attention! Here’s something new that I had planned.”
Sometimes those hints and plans add up to lightning in a bottle.
And the lightning in a bottle is exactly what you needed to help you see clearly in the storm. Amidst the dark and ominous, a sudden burst of electricity streaks like outreaching fingers across the sky, illuminating the gloom with a jolt of insight and a flash of understanding.
In my last blog, my dear sister, who is every bit an emotional rock for me, made a comment that people habitually create conflict where there is none. It certainly made me analyze my current “storm”. I both agree and disagree with her. I agree that we succumb to our own doubts, and try to reason with ourselves to make heads or tails of life. We try to control our “weather”. We toss and turn in the roaring wind and bounce around in the turbulence we create during the ride. We try to bluff a confidence to rise above our own insecurities. And while I think that inner conflict creates a basis from which to reason, per se, it is also a valid argument necessary to help us rationalize a situation - to settle the storm. It is when we finally relinquish control and stop fighting the elements that we find our sense of calm.
It is often in our darkest moments that we find a light where we need it most. The light leads us to recognize our own strength. Endurance. Resolution. Awareness. Hope. And most of all, trust. Not necessarily a self-trust, but an investment of faith in the unknown. A conviction to rely on the unforeseen nature of the coming weather. To embrace the treacherousness and the serenity. To stop trying to control the conditions, and allow the rain to soak in and cleanse our perspective. The wind to blow us in new directions. The lightning to jolt us awake. And the sunlight to brighten our souls.
So, what will become of my lightning in a bottle?
Can’t say at this moment.
But I’m definitely going to enjoy the little sparks that keep sending shocks to my heart. And I’m going to keep smiling as the weather changes.