Open Heart, Clear Head

February 19, 2014

Do your greatest hopes ever scare you?

It’s an honest question. One I was called to ponder over the last 10 days or so. Hopes are beautifully diverse, varying in intensity and impact.

Some hopes are like happy sprinkles on the cupcake of life (yes, mine would be gluten-free, dairy-free and oh so chocolatey, but that’s beside the point) such as hoping it doesn’t rain, hoping for a call back on a key question or hoping for a sale at your favorite store. There is nothing at all wrong with hoping for these tidbits of delight and comfort. These are the hopes that simply make me smile.

Other hopes seem aspirational and may be related to career growth, an opportunity to experience something or, perhaps, resculpting your physical body. These have definite merit, and are tied more to progressive concepts or positive changes. Many times, they have an associated timeline, an expectation of completion or a destination. These are the hopes that call me to act as your cheerleader.

Our next set of hopes is related to more intimate interactions like the hope for the recovery of a loved one, the hope to be a parent, the hope of lasting partnership or the hope to regain spiritual balance. This category of hopes is often more reverent, strikes deeper chords and, for some, comes with self-imposed pressure or angst. These are the hopes I pray are answered for you.

Then, ah yes, there are the hopes that are woven into our very core. The hopes that bubble up from a few inches outside the heart, race to the mind, bounce around our consciousness and bring a flush to the skin. Hopes like this can jog loose past hurts, unspoken longings and our most raw energies. These hopes may have been carefully submerged under the pull and push of our everyday lives, only to reveal themselves boldly when we encounter a person, awareness or opportunity beyond our expectations.

So, what then? Your hope bursts forth like fireworks, an onslaught to your senses and a dizzying jolt to your entire system. Do you let doubt rush in? Do you fortify your walls to keep yourself from potential harm? Do you embrace it fully? Do you absolutely let go?

For me, I was blessed to encounter two deeply spiritual people who fit instantly. One a teacher and friend across time, with a heart of gold and a graceful energy truly beyond words. I could not decide whether to laugh, cry or rejoice in song. So, I did all of that. Wow. Such encounters are amazing. It opened my heart entirely and inspired a solace that passes explanation.

The second knocked me right into a weightless spin. This person embodied a hope that I had all but abandoned . . . believed could not ever manifest. God likes to show me I’m wrong. This driven individual challenges me, makes me belly laugh, somehow seems to “get” my quirky ways and has a heart that has been bounced around like mine—only to keep beating strong and loud. By entering my life, this amazing spirit shook loose my defenses, uncovered my hesitations and made me reflect at length about whether a hope can be “too good to be true.” Mind you, all of this is blessing enough. But, as a truly experiential being, I look forward to further discovery.

Does it freak me out? Actually, yes. But the best things often do at first. I’m not used to being seen. What do I hope for now? The grace to simply be present, the clarity to let all my walls crumble and the passion to show the world what the full glory of hopeful sunshine looks like.

No matter what transpires or how long this journey lasts, I surrender. Thank you, God, for keeping me guessing.

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