BE MINDFUL OF NOW.

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(taken from my hand-written journal April 16, 2000)

Today I took a walk.

I went out into the field to my “sacred place.” I call it the Valley of the Crows, because they always gather there. It’s really just a dip in a neighbor’s field with a creek nearby and trees all around.

I sat on the grass then lay back, letting the sun kiss my face. I heard a fly buzz close by me. I heard a cardinal calling, “purdy, purdy, purdy.” Other birds flew about with different calls. I could hear the rustle of small things in the bushes and trees.

There is an old tree that overlooks my “valley.” I imagined that it was a guardian, maybe Moses, with the law in his arms, maybe a mother holding her baby, but then, finally, it took shape and I saw a brave, a warrior, ageless and fearless, immortalized in that oddly shaped tree, standing guard over the one time home of his people, standing guard over me.

At that moment there was only then, no past, no future, just the moment. I lost track of time, sitting, standing, and lying there between heaven and earth, listening to the sounds of birds, feeling the sun and the breezes, imagining trees were warrior spirits and communicating with a divine being that defies all our expectations and goes beyond all our understandings.

I didn’t have to be in control and it felt good. All I had to do is trust the Creator and enjoy the moment for all its beauty without comparing it to the past or even to the future. When we compare a moment to a past moment, we rob the present and cheapen our memories. No need to worry over tomorrow, either. I may not even be here and I will have wasted today thinking about tomorrow and miss both.

Today is today. Now is the present, the gift. Right now–that is where the treasure is to be found. Now, is when I feel the joy of things hoped for as if though they were here already. Now, is when I still my soul and give thanks for all that is good and right in my life. So, I think to myself, “Learn from the past. Don’t live there. Trust for tomorrow. Don’t live there, either. This moment is its own. See the beauty in it. There has never been another like it and there never will be another like it. Be fully in it. Enjoy it. Appreciate it. Love it. Be thankful for it.”

Oh, me,

awake with the morning

rise with the dawn.

Feel its warmth on your face.

As a butterfly

let the wind lift your wings

until your spirit soars

until it sings.

Remember, myself,

this day shall never be again.

When the sun sets

it is but a long gone friend.