Posts Tagged hear

Random Acts of Kindness – 2

Someone is longing to hear from you today. Don’t disapoint her or him. Make his or her day meaningful.

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It’s Just a Question

            Do you see me? Do you hear me? Do I matter at all to you? Do you know what I think? Do you know how I feel? I know that these are tough questions and that they are hard to listen to. They are embarrassing questions. I know that you want to turn away, hurry off or pretend that you did not hear.

            Hurry away – that’s what the priest and Levite did when they encountered the man robed, beaten and left alongside the Jericho road. That’s the one Jesus talked about in the Gospel of Luke after being asked, “Who is my neighbor.” A stranger, the third man to come along, heard the injured man. He stopped, took care of his wounds as best he could and then took the injured man to where he could receive the care he needed. The Good Samaritan did the unthinkable. He aided a despised other. The Samaritans and Jews hated each other in those days. The Jews of Jesus’ day were astounded by this parable.

            The priest and the Levite were excused because to touch a dead body would defile them although there were circumstances that would permit them to do so. That’s what we think today. If we interact with unacceptable people, they will rub off on us. We will be defiled. In fact I was once told by a former missionary to the Philippines, “My husband will not eat with you because you eat with black people.”

            Our society is so busy, so desensitized, so fragmented that we do not see or hear one another. We pass each other. We might even speak or wave but we do not see. That is all anyone really wants: is to be noticed, to be heard, to be acknowledged, to be valued.

            Did you speak to a stranger today? Did you offer a word of encouragement to anyone? Did you walk by or just step over the wounded person?  Did you bind up or put ointment on any wounded hurts today? It’s just a question.

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52 Keys for Living, Loving and Working

            What are the keys that unlock the door to a fuller, richer, happier, more fulfilling life? What are those ingredients that foster mental, physical and spiritual well being? These questions are as old as time. No one has all of the answers, but centuries of human struggles and triumphs have revealed the ones that seem to be most effective when cultivated and exercised over a long period of time. There may be others that work well for you.  Add them to the ones presented here. All of humanity constantly strives to uncover the secrets that lead to a sense of well being and fulfillment. Although we all strive for happiness, the wisdom of the ages argues that happiness seems to be a byproduct of how we live our lives rather than a strategy to be mastered. The direction of all life is toward growth. Each experience, each encounter, each revelation prepares us for the next.  Each new insight opens even more vistas to us. Life continues to unfold before us if we are open to receive the lessons and if we are willing to push our boundaries beyond what we already know and what feels safe. The abundant life we crave does not reside in safety. Unless we are willing to step out in unknown territory and make ourselves vulnerable to pain and uncertainty our lives will remain unfulfilled and dim shadows of what could be. Life is meant to be an adventure into discovering who we are and our relationship to one another. Life is made up of a series of ever changing, ever evolving relationships that touch and create other relationships.

The Centrality of Faith

Faith is the foundation of all relationships, with God, with our self, and with others. We establish and develop relationships through faith. We decide whether or not we want to establish or maintain a relationship based on a mutual understanding that states, I believe that this will be good for each of us. We also decide whether or not to enter into a faith relationship with God and at what level. According to the Holy Bible only a minute measure of faith is required – our faith only needs to be as great as a mustard seed which is the smallest seed known. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” We must also have some measure of faith toward ourselves. This requires that we know who we are and what we are about – not an easy task. Establishing relationships demonstrates a basic faith that there is a tomorrow – a reason to live, love and hope.

The Keys

Be present                  

            Be present is by far the most important key. Be in the moment with your whole being not thinking of what will come next or what has happened in the past. Be in this moment fully committed to it. We need to glean from each moment what it has to reveal to us. This is the now. What is happening this very instant? We cannot detain the moment, or recall it, but we can easily miss it.

            When we are at work, we spend much of our time thinking about what we would like to be doing at home. Sometimes we are planning our vacation, thinking about our daughter’s impending wedding, thinking about our grandchildren or perhaps retirement. Our mind has temporarily taken flight. We are not present with the current project or with the other people in the room. We miss what is taking place in the moment.

            When we are at home, we think about what awaits at work again missing the now. We miss the smiles, sparkling eyes, sighs, stiffened body language and the lilt in the voice. We are focused on another place and time.

            Liza Minnelli, the fabulous Oscar, Emmy, Tony, and Grammy winner, has it right when she says, “If you’ve got one foot in yesterday and one foot in tomorrow, you’re missing today.”[1]

[1] Liz Smith. Parade Magazine. March 01, 2009

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