Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Open to new things

I had no idea of the blessings I would receive when I said "yes" to serving as a mentor to one of my congregation's confirmation students many months ago. The relationship with Rachel has enriched my life, and I know it will continue to do so as we stay connected.

This is a good reminder to me of the truth of something I just reread in Joan Chittister's book The Gift of Years. In it she says, "Life is not simply what happens to us—though in moments of surprise life waits, too—but life is also what we ourselves make happen.

"We become what we do. We become new inside when we urge ourselves to do new things. We become awake when we do not allow ourselves to simply sleep through life."

I take that to mean not just doing new things and saying "yes" to things we might not otherwise do—but also staying awake and aware enough to actually see the richness of those experiences. Sometimes, it's only after the fact that I realize how I have been changed by some experience. I want to raise my awareness level so that I can also savor things as I live them, not just afterward!

Reach out. Find ways to serve that fit your gifts and your lifestyle. Pay attention. Savor. Open yourself up to new things—and just see all the blessings you'll bring to others and you'll receive in your life. What a cycle of joy and happiness this sets up!

How has this been true in your life lately?

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