I was in my bathroom this morning looking at a picture collage hanging on the wall from my Open House soon after the divorce. I had moved into a rental house and wanted to share the provision with others. The friends that came to the party penned their words of encouragement to me on the matting of the frame. I’ve kept this hanging in my bathroom since then because reminds me of the beauty of friendship.
So today I read the words that one friend had written: “Life has begun!”
I remember in that particular season of my life that those words meant so much to me. They were like a promise I grabbed up and believed. They uplifted and moved me to see fresh light in what had been a pretty dark time. They inspired me to reach for what I wanted and not let anything from the past get in my way.
This morning as I read these words again I pondered the questions, “Well, isn’t every day a new beginning? Couldn’t these words apply to today, to this moment, just as much as they did regarding the divorce season? And if they did apply, how would that look? How would that impact my attitude, my emotions, my thinking and my actions?”
What if I awoke each day and thought, “Today Life Has Begun!”
What if I awoke and felt the excitement of “Today Life Has Begun!”
And even better perhaps, what if when I fell asleep each night I closed out my day with intention, putting to rest all the feelings I don’t want to carry into tomorrow. Putting to rest what I don’t understand. Putting to rest judgments and assumptions about others from that day or week or year. Putting to rest anything from that day that I’ve struggled with or been at odds with. Putting to rest sorrow or sadness, not deciding ahead of time that tomorrow is going to look and feel the same way.
I really believe that life does begin again any moment we choose it to. And that the past is only the past, and has no bearing on what is possible today unless we allow it to. We’ve been conditioned to live our day, fall asleep, wake up and live it all over again. It’s just conditioning, nothing more. And new conditioning is available ALL the time. It’s up to you. It’s up to me.
My all time favorite words of Jesus are, “Behold I make all things new.”
I bet implicit in that declaration also is that life has begun. Now, and 30 minutes from now, and an hour from now. Our cells are regenerating and beginning anew 24/7, so why not our thinking, feeling, and actions?
Perhaps for you, to embrace this clear intention, you might need to let go of a few things. You might want to surrender some things, give them up, in order to make space for the new, and in order to have energy to create anew.
If you were to really let the past go, what would you need to say goodbye to?
Here are some things that come to mind:
Things you don’t understand about another.
Assumptions you have made about the actions of another.
Valuations you have placed because of comparisons you have made.
What you perceive as failure.
The high you get from the addiction of guilt.
The excuses you make instead of choosing to live responsibly.
The feelings you carry around because of a broken relationship.
What would you want to say hello to?
A clean slate.
Giving others in your life a free pass, seeing them new too.
Believing in yourself again.
Extending compassion to yourself and others.
Acceptance of what doesn’t make sense to you.
The innocence of another—they are doing their best too.
Forgiveness for everyone, no exceptions.
The promise that Jesus made and is available always, to everyone: All things new.
Perhaps you want to put up a sticky note on your bathroom mirror to remind you that life begins today.
I am so grateful I get to go again and again and again. And that I have been gifted with a fabulous mind and spirit and body with which to create an excellent and abundant life. Anything contrary is simply not the truth.
Love and warmth from my heart to yours,