Thursday, December 31, 2009

It's Always Darkest Before the Dawn

Today is New Year’s Eve. For ME, this is always the darkest day of the year. I realize it isn’t actually THE darkest day of the year; the Winter Solstice is that in actuality.
However, in a spiritual sort of way, New Year’s Eve is that day for me. It’s an ending; it’s a time to put to rest the troubles of the past, and make a fresh start. The saying “It’s always darkest before the dawn” becomes applicable. Tomorrow, New Year’s Day, is a dawn of beginnings and day of fresh starts.
I can’t promise that our fresh starts will “take” so to speak, but we have the physical reminder that we can have redemption and renewal if we strive for it.
In reality, every day of the year can be a fresh start, a moment in time for trying harder and choosing to live a more Christlike life. Sadly, many of us can’t seem to pull it together until the New Year rolls around and we are faced with the season of goals and promises and that’s why, today is the darkest day.
The day I vow once again to get on the treadmill, to eat better, and be more diligent in my spiritual endeavors; tomorrow is the dawn of the new me—again.

Tonight, on this darkest of nights, we’ll gather with friends, play games, watch movies and eat junky treats; we’ll laugh and we’ll love, having those who are special to us gather round.
Tomorrow and every day, we’ll recommit ourselves to become who our Father in Heaven knows we are.

If I may paraphrase the sentiments from that Jolly Old Elf for a moment: “Happy New Year to all, and to all a Good Night!”

Have fun, and be safe.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


It’s raining today. It’s almost Christmas, and yet I’m not missing the “white” of “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas.”

Having grown up in the Northwest, I suppose rain is just part of my soul. There is no pain that a cup of hot chocolate and the happy patter of rain can’t soothe for me, at least for a time.

Here in Oregon it’s often known as "liquid sunshine.” That may seem a stretch for some, but for me, it’s the sound of peace. I've lived in many places: Ohio, Utah, Colorado, Washington and Oregon; yet I've never been as content in any of those places as I was when it rained.

When the heavy mist falls, it looks like millions of falling stars, twinkling under the lamplight at night; shimmering, swirling, they make their way to the waiting earth to form patterns on the pavement and in my psyche; when the heavy rains beat a tattoo on the roof, it’s nearly as good and soothing as the rhythm of the surf at the coast.

If you find a rock, and it doesn't look like much, spit on it-well, you could just put it under the hose, but, you may not be near a water source; spit on it. See how much prettier it looks. That's how the world looks to me in the rain. Colors pop and everything is washed clean; the world seems happier somehow; refreshed.

Rain makes puddles. I LOVE to drive through puddles. I don't know what it is, but as that wall of water comes up and I push through, it makes me giggle.

Next time it rains where you are, snuggle up and listen to it. Listen to it splash and patter across your roof or porch. Let the happy liquid sunshine wash away the cares of the day; have a book, a blanket and a mug of hot cocoa nearby, and the day will be pretty close to perfection.