The Rose Bush

The rose bush is still

Three new buds present, unopened on the upper stakes of the vermillion bush.  Yesterday I brought a half blown rose to the little vase on my dining table to replace the wilted specimen from last week. I have had fresh roses on my table for two months.

The rose bush that someone landscaped 20 years ago and carefully tended in the small backyard of this rental townhouse is still blooming.  I am grateful to that caring person for giving verve and color to the small private space. I acknowledge that no hard freeze has yet struck our neighborhood. I am also aware that the enduring beauty and survival of blooms is partly due to my careful watering, attentiveness and consistent pruning. 

May I exercise that same care and stewardship over my own comings and goings so that I bloom far into the winter!

I love to walk

a fine inspiring walkI love to walk.  Walking is a habit, an addiction, something as necessary for my well being as sleep or food; music and written words.

I love to walk; but, not for transportation.  I do not really enjoy destination walking.  Walking for transportation or to a prearranged destination inevitably carries with it a deadline; some sort of stress or reason to arrive by a certain time, looking a certain way.  Besides, destination walking often takes one parallel to traffic noise of every sort and on concrete sidewalks that jolt one’s joints.

Walking for exercise or meditation is quite flexible; and therefore, inspiring. One constantly has choices and makes benign decisions. On impulse I can change my course; live a bit on the wild side, or have a mini adventure simply by taking a path I have never been down (or up) before. If my cogitations and ruminations take a little longer than expected, I can walk around an extra block or butte until I get the niggling knots thought out. If I spy a rainbow (five times in the last three months), a superlative invoking sunset, or light reflecting through the ever changing autumn colors just so; I can take time to pause and reflect on that fleeting moment of nature’s beauty.

Walking for recreation or meditation is not the same as aimless wandering.  It has purpose and a malleable goal. It simultaneously invigorates, relaxes and empowers; leaving me refreshed and energized to stand on my own two feet in other situations large and small.


CherryAt first I thought they were silly – not to mention sloppy: little sticky notes everywhere; three by five cards taped over the sink and on the refrigerator. I once made a reminder which said, “Smile,” and taped it to my bathroom mirror. The next day when I exited the shower, I looked up expectantly, waiting for encouragement, only to be disappointed.  The strip of ordinary white paper was rippled from the steam and running red marker letters were fast blurring into watercolor hieroglyphics. My tentative smile felt a bit as though my spirit had been caught in the rain in non-waterproof makeup and a crinoline dress.

Never-the-less, these little reminders must be effective.  Graduate language students continue to step in and out of elevators and bump into normal folks while reading little cards always in abundant supply from a vest pocket. Music teachers and Math teachers still recommend flash cards. Life coaches persist in prodding clients to meditate daily, murmur canned prayers, and, above all – Affirm yourself!

 Since I am a music teacher and have experienced first hand the positive results of the flash cars mentioned above; I have come to see the logic and benefit in daily review and affirmation.  Today I invite you into my inner sanctum of meditation and thought to share my current affirmations – private to me; yet publicly available to all in the widely published book known as The Bible.  The thing that is most affirming to me is that I did not go in search of these particular verses and themes.  I came across them during natural times of meditation and daily need.

 Do not neglect your gift; which was given you through a prophetic message when the body of elders laid their hands on you.  I Timothy 4:14

 Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.  I Timothy 4:15

 But one thing I do:  forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13b

 The peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things…and the God of peace will be with you.  Philippians 4:7,8,9.

 God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:19

 It is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.  Philippians 2:13

 [Today] God fulfills his purpose for me.  My heart is steadfast.  I will sing and make music.  Psalm 57