Monday, August 26, 2013

Seeing Before and Beyond

“Before you begin a thing, remind yourself that difficulties and delays quite impossible to foresee are ahead. ... You can only see one thing clearly, and that is your goal. Form a mental vision of that and cling to it through thick and thin.”

“Man can only receive what he sees himself receiving.”

“All prosperity begins in the mind and is dependent only upon the full use of our creative imagination.”

It seems like everything is conspiring to keep my technology from working.  My Internet provider has blocked my service again and they don’t know why it’s not working.  My charger won’t charge my computer and a new charger isn’t cheap.  (That problem just resolved, thank God.)    Still, I feel grateful and peaceful and I’m glad to be sitting down and writing.  The next time I feel like losing my patience with my Internet provider because they can’t provide my Internet, I need to sit down and write.  This, more than anything, gets me calm.
I haven’t been here with my blog in a couple of days and I can tell.  I don’t like not being here.  I really don’t.  The chair I’m sitting in is my favorite place to be.  As long as I’m writing while I’m in that chair.  It doesn’t have to be that chair.  It could be a seat at the local coffee shop, or the floor, or a library, or just about anywhere, as long as I’m doing my writing.  But this chair works best because it’s early and still dark and I’m alone and there are no interruptions and it’s quiet.  I am extremely grateful for all of it. 
Even now, when I still don’t know what I’m going to say and when I don’t have something to write, I’m extremely grateful.  This is the best place in the world to be. 
Well, there might be two other places that are better.  One is in the direct presence of God, which while I am in this chair, I feel.
The other place is my house on the beach.  Yesterday, while on a long drive, I was listening to The Pledge, Your Master Plan for an Abundant Life by Michael Masterson.  (A better writer knows that the part about the long drive was not necessary in that last sentence, but I want it known that listening to instructional materials while driving is one of the best uses of my time, and perhaps yours, too.)   Masterson talked about the power of visualization, how it was even more powerful than positive thinking.  More powerful than either is the power of determined action. 
I liked the idea of visualization and how I can visualize the things I want.  Combining this principle with the principle of the power of each moment, I realize how I can visualize the rest of my morning.  I can see myself moving calmly and cheerfully through each moment, doing things well, being on time or even early.  I can visualize my interactions with people. I can visualize how I’m going to smile at my children and give them a lot of hugs.  I can visualize my workday.  And I can visualize my house on the beach.
First things first:  I like the idea of visualizing each of my moments.  In this way I am present and I am planning at the same time, because if I can be peaceful later, I can be peaceful now.  So I’m planning how I’m going to behave today.
·      I’m going to smile…a lot.
·      I’m going to work diligently and cheerfully like the peasant Pong Lo in A Grain of Rice.  (Eventually that peasant became a prince.) 
·      If something unexpected and unpleasant occurs, I’m going to breathe.  (I have to be prepared for this because in resolving to be positive and present, I have just declared war against all the forces of darkness.)
·      I’m going to organize my environment.
·      I’m going to do more work than is necessary.
·      I’m going to take time to meditate and rest.
·      I’m going to use my time well.

By seeing all this before it happens, by visualizing the internal and external details, I take control of my day.
I am also seeing beyond.  I’m seeing that house on the beach.  It’s not a big house, but it has everything I want and need.  It is a house filled with love and peace and study and prayer.  It is a house filled with God’s presence.  It is a house that is a sanctuary for me and for those I love. 
This is what I’m visualizing for each day and each part of my day.  This doesn’t come easily and I notice that the greater my resolve, the more fierce the attacks of the Enemy.  I have to be careful to not allow myself great alarm or surprise at setbacks or disappointments. 
I have to Get Started.
I have to Keep Going.
And I don’t dare stop.