My awareness was brought back to the present moment by a tugging at my side. My three-year-old daughter was tugging on my apron, seeking attention. My first instinct was to snap at her for disturbing my thoughts, but as I looked down at her sweet face, my heart melted with love. I realized in the midst of my self-pitying misery, God had sent me an angel to remind me of what really mattered. I scooped her up in my arms and thanked God for her presence in my life, as well as all of my children.
My focus on the problems I was having, had pushed the things that really mattered to the back of my mind. In Unity we teach of the Law of Mind Action, which states that the things we hold foremost in our mind manifest. "Where the mind goes, energy flows, and manifestation follows." Therefore, to manifest the life we desire, it is important to keep what we want in the forefront of our minds, and not our problems.
This does not mean that we will not have problems, or that we can ignore them. It does mean that we cannot let them take over. In fact, if you think about it, you will probably realize that many of your life problems were solved by not letting them have power in your life, which empowered you to see solutions.
Now, I consider myself to be a relatively bright person. How could it possibly take so long, and so many errors for me to finally get the "BIG Aha!" that permanently shifted my mind and heart? I think it is because it is so easy to get caught up in the trivial pursuits of our "human part," the perceptions and precepts of worldly consciousness.
In a quest to be approved and accepted; valued by the standards of "the world," many of us put what really matters in the back of our mind. Whether the goal is financial status, physical appearance, relationships, career success, etc., sadly we miss out on what matters most. Life.
This is not necessarily a narcissistic quest. It can be the exact opposite; a desire to be a good provider for the family, assuring they have the best of everything needed for "the good life." It can simply be a means of trying to re-establish a sense of self-worth or confidence lost through some of life's experiences.
Yes, sometimes it is also the seductive call of the ego to be richer-than, more attractive-than, or more powerful -than others. The bottom line is the same for all: missing out on what matters most. And then comes the realization and regret.
In my mom's kitchen there was a plaque that read "We grow too soon old, and too late smart." Like the dad in the classic song "Cat's In The Cradle," we chase after "the good life," and miss out the gift of life itself. All too often, as in the song, our children follow our example.
So, what can we do? Here are some things I do to continuously reconnect with what matters most, so it doesn't get lost in the "Trivial Pursuit" of daily life.
1) Ease into each day. Start by reconnecting with the Divine, whatever "Name" you give it. My "morning ritual" is to get my morning coffee, and start my daily visit with God.
2) Take time to think about your life. Sound strange to you? When was the last time you just thought about the "big picture" of your life...where it is, where it is going, where you want it to go.
3) Express thanks for what matters most; your many blessings. The day. Life. Health. Love. The desires of your heart, etc. Bring each person, place and thing to mind and heart. Don't just think of them, feel the love and gratitude. I journal, which helps me to focus, and even to work out issues.
4) Before leaving your "Sacred Space," write down three things you will do that day to stay connected to what matters most.
5) Don't just make plans, take action.It could be as simple as a text, phone call or email. It could be as complex as planning an event or trip, signing up for a class or starting a project. Regularly review photo albums, journals and catalogs to let your soul soar and entertain ideas and adventures past, present and future.
6) At the end of the day, again give thanks.
This will not guarantee you a perfect, trouble-free life, but you will find that you handle problems with more faith, strength and serenity than you ever thought possible, and you will have more appreciation for the good things.
ALL of the best things in life may not be free, but they should never cost us the price of what matters most.