"Consider how the lilies grow..."
no worries, little lilies; no worries.
my sister of another mother and I were catching up over the weekend...
she is Vietnamese, and was one of the many, running for her life, in a day in the life when Saigon fell; and scripted like out of the movies -- her father, divined by God, just so happened to be in the area -- on an American destroyer. Oh, it would be quite some time later before they were to meet; and even longer before that little lily from world's away would one day say to me, along with her distinct and genuine giggle, "I love America; I love my country. I owe my life to this country."
Now, in proper context -- this exclamation/proclamation/exasperation came just after the two of us were lamenting our broken marriages and finding ourselves never happier...
oh life! life is funny, isn't it?
and of course, many times it is not (funny).
wildfires in the wine country comes to mind
Hollywood showing its true technicolors, is another
life truly rocks us like a hurricane all the live long day, and it gets right back up to do it all over again on the next.
It's an ocean out there.
One ocean after another.
We get to the other side; we find respite; and then suddenly something else happens. We begin bobbing in deep waters all over again, having never seen it coming.
To be able to predict and fully prepare for what's ahead is futile...
But of course it is; for by definition, respite is a temporary position.
In my American Heritage dictionary, circa 1980 -- the word resplendent follows respite. And isn't that a glorious word: "filled with splendor, brilliant." Lilies come to mind. Sunshine dancing upon the water, like diamonds, is another.
And scripted like out of the movies, the very next word is respond v. 1. to make a reply; to answer 2. To act in return or in answer 3. To react positively or cooperatively...
The thing is, life, itself, is full of surprises. Indeed.
Abut just about everything gets down to our response to these things, these things that happen in and around and through life's highs and lows, the ebbs and flows, that becomes the very thing that changes everything and makes a life.
If we respond with a positive, forward thinking, vibe -- we actually move forward in positive, productive ways; if we respond with negativity, what else is life to do with that, but mirror that scrappy attitude -- add an award winning slap in the face, for special effect, and suddenly your life is worthy of an Academy Award.
Taking this idea further, like a ripple on a golden pond -- as individuals -- we are individually mandated to direct our lives with honor, with integrity, with grit, and with an understanding that every little thing we do is interconnected to every single soul bobbing around us. [Jane Fonda directs her blockbuster just like the rest of us.]
from ripples to tsunamis...
every action has a reaction.
But let's be clear, like Doris Day on a clear day -- Harvey put the hole in his own damn boat.
It's called the law of life; and it has a first and last name, and she is widely recognized about town as Little Miss Cause And Effect.
Oh to be or not to be; oh to act in return or in answer; oh to every sordid action, and in proper turn, the mandatory reaction -- good, bad or indifferent. Oh, I wish I was more brave, right Jane? Oh I wish I hadn't positioned myself so close to the enemy...
Our response to life is everything; while, all the while, how we treat other people is another. Like a whirlpool, what goes around comes around in crazy madness right on cue.
Oh my, my little lily -- my sister, my friend -- she recognized this little secret, somehow, some way, and in spite of horrific beginnings. And while her story is turning out okay, it must be duly noted that she didn't just go from coming to America and landing within a loving family and getting married and having kids and eventually having a nostalgic conversation with little old G thing one day like she walked on the set of It's a Wonderful Life...Oh no.
She had trials from the moment her little toes touched American soil; she had issues just like every other American girl, as in something metaphorically borrowed, something terribly blue. Details omitted, this little lily could have given up on creating a life filled with resplendent favor, even for one day, being overcome with the moments that totally suck and appearing out of nowhere like a perfect storm.
But that just wasn't in her God Given DNA -- better defined as the Divine, and that which is Naturally and Actively present in the every day, inside each and every one of us. Making a habit into tapping into that feed -- that truly is the way, and the truth, and the life.
Oh to consider how the lilies grow....
this is all about Luke presenting the case, answering to the doubters, that Christ lives; do not worry, for look at the lilies... Do you see them fret? Portraying the little lilies as these little lowly creatures, a life expectancy of almost nil, as the lilies rejoice in resplendent joy all their numbered days. In the very next verse, Luke goes on to explain:
"If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! Do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well."
The little lily of Vietnamese birth has kept her face to the sun, has kept her faith in Something Greater than any of the un-splendored things that have come her way. Oh to the angels unaware, she is a living example of a life resplendent; never mind the riff-raff that was meant to take her to some deserted island and leave her there only to succumb to a life lost in heartbreak and loss.
Her mindfulness of being more than her circumstances gave her all the brute strength she needed to be truly brave; to live a life in constant connection to that which truly feeds her IS her ocean and her homeland -- it is where she lives in her soul. Nothing can take It away, nothing can diminish It's Power and Might.
Only fitting that her most common response to things that don't go the way she imagined: "oh well."
Spring up Oh Well!
All in all -- no matter the imperfections -- America is this kind of land resplendent. By design, America has always stood tall, as the pinnacle, as a free beacon, to all the world. [Oh John McCain...you just don't get it; maybe at one time you really and truly did, but today you have surely lost your mind and your headings. Duly noted, you hate Trump. Check. Go ahead and raise your skull and crossbones flag.] He says:
"To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain “the last best hope of earth” for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history."
The irony is, when McCain calls out the "half-baked, spurious nationalism" kind -- he is attacking his own kind, the conservatives who have allowed him the good pleasure of serving in the Senate all these years. Simple Americans, like myself, like my sister of Vietnamese birth and full blooded American spirit, take offense to this kind of nonsense.
Nautically speaking, his speech seemed to be heading on a good course -- until it hit this spot. This is neither time, nor place, to have your ego battle Trump's ego; this is a time to unify, to support the "last best hope of earth," beginning with supporting your fellow republican president!
Speaking of SPURIOUS making this girl furious, the reality is -- with decades of evidence before us, revealing years of pure fraud against these very ideals, and principles, that have made America great -- the unconscionable usurpation of the rule of law and the unchecked growth of the national debt has created the very conditions on land for this kind of rare rise of a populist president in the first place!
YOU are the cause, John McCain; you personify the very cause; welcome to the world of its ill-effects. You bloviating, pompous, self-serving, half-baked bureaucrat, Little Miss Cause and Effect wants your autograph so she can throw it into the fire made of lilies and hot air.
Self-assured, you, sir, are a liability. [antonym for resplendent anyone?]
Not to worry
All things will be given
this, too, shall pass
all things considered, especially considering how lilies and liabilities grow, it's all good -- it all gets us to where we need to go....eventually.
Sweet of you for dropping by -- it's just G, here, just responding in resplendent respite every day, on one thing or another. Hope to see you again real soon...someday when you least expect it... like a tidal wave.
Make it a Good Day, G