Tag Archives: beauty

Earthquake

Hey y’all!

I def didn’t mean to disappear. But life has been life. I think I’m gonna just continue to let life be and get back to it at the beginning of April.

However. I had a concrete, postable (is that even a word?!) thought earlier so I’m heeeeeeere!

There are, at times, cataclysmic events, people, seasons, and/or situations that shake the foundation, core, plates of our lives just like an earthquake.

Like legit. An earthquake is the moving and shifting of the tectonic plates in the earth’s crust. Far from where our eyes see, there is pressure at fault lines (thanks for the refresher Google and wiki) that causes the plates to grind and shift.

Some earthquakes are felt and some are not. Some we see evidence of and some we do not. But no matter what, something happened and left the earth forever changed.

The biggest earthquakes have visible changes, disturbances in roads resulting in cracks and sinkholes. Houses and buildings destroyed from the foundation up. Not to mention destruction of their contents. Water main breaks. Gas lines destroyed. Havoc wreaked on power lines. Death. The list is endless.

The smaller ones exist but, much like the daily rotation of the earth, we don’t necessarily see or feel them at the moment. But, as sure as winter turns to spring, summer, and fall, leaves and flowers, daylight and darkness, nothing stays the same.

Not to mention the aftershocks or shockwaves. Those tend to be worse and far more dangerous than the earthquake itself. Things are already out of whack and perilous. And here comes more shaking to add to the destruction.

For us, cataclysmically, death, loss, life, addition, quakes us. Changes us. Would seemingly destroy us. Or make us better.

If we stay at the quake we miss out on the beauty of it. If we hold on to whatever it is, good or bad, we don’t make room for the goodness that can come of it.

Being stagnant is not always a standstill in grief. Sometimes we think we have arrived at the best we’ve ever had and as good as we think it’s gonna get. So. Out of an abundance of caution, we park there so we don’t risk it or lose it. Never mind the possibility of more or better.

There is something to rebuilding though. Processing the event. Learning from it. Growing from it. Mourning or celebrating. Grieving or rejoicing. Going through what the earthquake brought you and putting it into proper perspective. Learning the lesson and accepting the gift.

All life really is is a collection of moments sewn together to make a well-used, patchwork quilt. It is up to us to determine what we do with the pieces and how we embrace or even use what is sewn together.

Proverbs 24 (The Message MSG)

Intelligence Outranks Muscle

1-2 Don’t envy bad people;
    don’t even want to be around them.
All they think about is causing a disturbance;
    all they talk about is making trouble.

3-4 It takes wisdom to build a house,
    and understanding to set it on a firm foundation;
It takes knowledge to furnish its rooms
    with fine furniture and beautiful draperies.

5-6 It’s better to be wise than strong;
    intelligence outranks muscle any day.
Strategic planning is the key to warfare;

Wise conversation is way over the head of fools;
    in a serious discussion they haven’t a clue.

8-9 The person who’s always cooking up some evil
    soon gets a reputation as prince of rogues.
Fools incubate sin;
    cynics desecrate beauty.

Rescue the Perishing

10 If you fall to pieces in a crisis,
    there wasn’t much to you in the first place.

11-12 Rescue the perishing;
    don’t hesitate to step in and help.
If you say, “Hey, that’s none of my business,”
    will that get you off the hook?
Someone is watching you closely, you know—
    Someone not impressed with weak excuses.

13-14 Eat honey, dear child—it’s good for you—
    and delicacies that melt in your mouth.
Likewise knowledge,
    and wisdom for your soul—
Get that and your future’s secured,
    your hope is on solid rock.

15-16 Don’t interfere with good people’s lives;
    don’t try to get the best of them.
No matter how many times you trip them up,
    God-loyal people don’t stay down long;
Soon they’re up on their feet,
    while the wicked end up flat on their faces.

17-18 Don’t laugh when your enemy falls;
    don’t gloat over his collapse.
God might see, and become very provoked,
    and then take pity on his plight.

19-20 Don’t bother your head with braggarts
    or wish you could succeed like the wicked.
Those people have no future at all;
    they’re headed down a dead-end street.

21-22 Fear God, dear child—respect your leaders;
    don’t be defiant or mutinous.
Without warning your life can turn upside down,
    and who knows how or when it might happen?

More Sayings of the Wise

An Honest Answer

23 It’s wrong, very wrong,
    to go along with injustice.

24-25 Whoever whitewashes the wicked
    gets a black mark in the history books,
But whoever exposes the wicked
    will be thanked and rewarded.

26 An honest answer
    is like a warm hug.

27 First plant your fields;
    then build your barn.

28-29 Don’t talk about your neighbors behind their backs—
    no slander or gossip, please.
Don’t say to anyone, “I’ll get back at you for what you did to me.
    I’ll make you pay for what you did!”

30-34 One day I walked by the field of an old lazybones,
    and then passed the vineyard of a slob;
They were overgrown with weeds,
    thick with thistles, all the fences broken down.
I took a long look and pondered what I saw;
    the fields preached me a sermon and I listened:
“A nap here, a nap there, a day off here, a day off there,
    sit back, take it easy—do you know what comes next?
Just this: You can look forward to a dirt-poor life,
    with poverty as your permanent houseguest!”

Do you

That is a powerful couple of words.  Sometimes it’s so hard to just “do you.”  We are conditioned to cater to and pander to others.  It’s part of our human nature.  We seek approval and validation outside of ourselves in others.  It is natural to desire praise and recognition for what it is that we do.

It is also dangerous to depend on others to create how we see ourselves.  By giving people permission, the keys, to dictate our worth and our value we become prisoners to their fickle, human minds.  By giving others the keys we unintentionally allow them the authority over all of who we are.

By allowing others and the world to tell us how great or horrible we are, we get on a wheel, a merry-go-round, a seemingly unending cycle.  Once we allow another or a thing to control us, once we seek permission from others to be who and what we are, they/it will never be satisfied.  They will always want more.  One day we will look up and be shattered remnants of the person we once were.

By being unwilling to “do you” when no one looks or applauds we are holding captive the passion and what we were created to do.  As individuals, we should seek to be free.  Free to follow our hearts.  Free to follow our passions.  Free to fulfill what we were created to do.  Free to be happy.  Free to have joy.

Society places an emphasis on external measures of success and beauty.  Society says we have to look a certain way, act a certain way, wear certain things, own certain things, talk a certain way or we just aren’t good enough.

I submit that we are all good enough.  We are all beautiful enough.  We are all talented enough.  We just have to own our own keys.  We have to be willing to “do you” no matter what.

I don’t men be rude, ruthless, mean, cutthroat, or disrespectful.  While we “do you” it is imperative that we value us enough to value others.   Poor behavior is often indicative of poor self-worth.  If we can’t treat others well while we “do you” we cannot “do you” well. We may lie to ourselves and justify our behavior.

But there is a conscious effort we make when we “do you” and being ourselves that, when done with the purest of motives, will not allow us to “do you” at the expense of others.  Sure, people appear to be successful who have done it at the expense of others.  But those people often live with regrets and that success comes at a price they may be unwilling to pay if they had it to do over.

So today, I challenge us to “do you.”  Even if nobody notices.  Even if nobody ever recognizes it.  The self-satisfaction in being true to our authentic selves will far outweigh anything any other person could ever give us.  People’s accolades are temporary.  The internal power, strength, and love that we receive from our decision to “do you” far outweighs anything any other person can give.

“Do you” boo!