We have been on a journey together for three plus decades. As I wake to an amazing sky, with sun reflecting on the buildings downtown and soft pastels playing out on scattered clouds, I can hear the city sounds and several birds. Everything is slowly waking up to the new day. I see today differently because of our friendship and the different ways he has introduced me to new forms of beauty.
Even as I look back in my mind, I realize that the nuances and textures I see and feel today are richer, warmer, and deeper because of his guidance. It is as if he listened in on old prayer, “Open my eyes so I can see what you show me of your miracle-wonders,” (Psalm 119.18) and then decided to answer it on Divinity’s behalf.
Somewhere, somehow, he infused the following ideas within my heart.
Be curious, especially about other people’s stories. Do more than listen! Ask questions followed by stillness and patience. In an age of competing noise, images, and messaging, most long to tell their story. They may not know where to start, so questions help. Most importantly, space, time, and a listener are required to create the window for stories.
Be aware of what is going on around you; in the chaos of life are wonderful gems to be discovered and embraced. You will also find pain and uncertainty. Responding to that, especially in the moment of discovery, creates bonds, renews hope, and models what it is to be fully alive.
When you see truth, take time to observe, experience, and celebrate the moment. Lights and shadows dancing in nature and reflecting on objects are wonderful ways to connect with the things often taken for granted. A smile given freely is filled with wisdom, compassion, and a willingness to share life. The pain reflected in another’s eyes is, once shared, can be treated with empathy, care, and love.
His big eyes have helped me experience more. His gift created a debt I can only repaid by gifting it on to others.