Wednesday, October 9

Improvements: Removing the Dross From My Life, Revisited 10/9/13

       Good evening,

I'm bumping this up. I wrote this over two years ago. Let me know what you think.

Refining gold, removing the dross.
      It will be morning for most of you by the time you read this. I'm squeezing in my gratitudes while I can, before the next day rolls in, claiming the time.  As most of you know, this place provides a gratitude journal for the visitors of this inn. I ask those who drop by, to sign the registry to this place by sharing three gratitudes. It's easy to do, really. Would you give it a try?


My Gratitudes for Today:

1. Met with a client today, the time we spent was powerful and rewarding. I enjoy seeing progress and I'm happy helping others deal with long-term issues, many of them stemming from childhood.  I love seeing others celebrating life more than they ever have.

2.  This evening, I had dinner with a friend of seven plus years. Afterwards he spoke at an event and I tagged along.  It's fun seeing another person using their craft. My friend has quirky humor that I delight in. I like the honesty we share----it meets my need for communication, belonging, inclusion, love, respect and support.

"Improvements" vs. Change

      My life is in transition.  The word "changes" is not used when I refer to them.  They are improvements.  Most people don't like change, nor do I; but, improvements we don't mind.  The outcome of these refinements are eagerly sought, like the candy I longed to buy after earning my weekly allowance as a kid.  I know a month from now I'll be happy settling into a new environment.  Greater peace of mind, will be mine, not that I don't revel in it, now.

     As a kid, my image of God, was that of a cruel divine being, who, like Zeus, doled out punishment, usually embarrassing and degrading, when I missed the mark.  I feared a wrathful, harsh, unforgiving deity.  Like Greek mythology, if I misbehaved, I was greeted with catastrophe, similar to being struck with lightning.  All that would remain that would speak of my existence would be a greasy smudge on the sidewalk of my psyche.  My faults splayed out on my psyche like the road kill that's been pressed in the asphalt on the Fruitvale Street Bridge in Alameda over the past three months, getting blacker and greaser as time and cars roll by.

      That image of God is long gone.  In its place is knowledge of a God whose nature is loving, gracious, quick to forgive and desires the best for me.  What a change.  And am I glad.

3. I luxuriate in a God who is patient and kind is my present experience.  He frees me from the unhealthy issues in my character that do not serve my best interests.  Am I glad.

4. Knowing that I can't change the areas where I struggle through the dint of my will power, makes me thankful.

     Why?  Because the pressure is off of me.  I'm mindful that God is able to remove my frailties. The areas in my life needing growth are many.  The good news is seeing tremendous growth, over the past  nine years.  The wonderful thing is knowing that the best in my life is yet to come.  Life gets richer and more satisfying as I yield the dross of my life into God's hands, knowing that He alone refines me.

How About You? 
What are the qualities in the God of your understanding?


Carl H said...

Dear Innkeeper,

On this Thursday night, I am grateful for...

1. A transformative, two hour celebration memorial today at the Three Crosses Church of the short but profoundly well-lived life of Sara Husokowski Anderson, wife of Edwin, new mother to William (2 months), First Grade School Teacher, and neighbor. Only God knows why, but somehow we have to trust that and release her to her new, next journey in the eternal world of spirit.

2. A renewed appreciation for loved ones, family, friends and neighbors. I hope to no longer take any one for granted, but to find new energy to invest time, talk and touch as I can...

3. Some quality time with our 24 year old son tonight to clarify important matters, and help him chart a clear path forward into a new future.

Carl H said...

Dear Innkeeper,

On this Saturday night, I am grateful for...

1. Time to share and catch up this morning over Eggs Benedict at the incomparable Montclair Egg Shop in the Oakland hills, with my younger brother Paul; a fellow traveling, kindred soul.

2. Spending much of the day with my third oldest son Vincent caring for my Mom, sharing Chipotle, shopping and running errands.

3. As always, whenever possible on a weekend day-off; taking time to heal via a glorious, late afternoon nap!

4. Watching two great films at home, back-to-back; with my Polish Kohanna; the 1967 brilliantly acted thriller, "Wait Until Dark" on PBS, with Audrey Hepburn, Alan Arkin, and Richard Crenna and the contemporary "Now You See Me," with an all star cast including Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine.

5. Sleeping in on a Sunday morning; not having to get early tomorrow morning (at 4:15 AM) to go to work.

Pablo said...

Dear Carl,

It's encouraging hearing there was celebrating of this young woman's life and the reminder you have that we want to treasure every moment, every person and especially our loved ones.

You have my prayers as you mentor your third son.

That movie was scary. I saw it when a young kid. The ending, when Alan Arkin leaps in her flat, made my heart jump.

Thanks for sharing what's alive within you!

Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.