Just before Easter we went camping on the coast as a family. The last morning I was woken by an irritating tapping sound on the roof of the tent – it had to be really constant and irritating to wake me up at 6 (I confess, I am not an early riser)! When eventually I left the warm bed and went outside I saw the rain cover gently tapping (blowing) in the wind. After I fastened it my eyes, half closed, caught a glimpse of the beautiful colours in the sky just before sunrise. I am rarely outside at sunrise!
And here I had a choice – I could either get back into lazy, idling mode, get back into bed still irritated by the wind that woke me, OR I could choose to make something of this unlikely early morning wakefulness. Maybe it was a gentle whispering Voice in the wind: “Wake up, wake up, seize the day and meet Me at sunrise. I chose to respond and make something of this moment. I went for a walk. I found a rock overlooking the ocean towards the horizon, bathed in pink and purple shades of skylight. I realised that my phone wasn’t with me which meant that I couldn’t capture the moment with a photo to post – another wonderful piece of synchronicity and an opportunity to choose – it forced me to just be there and picture the moment through my eyes – not falling into the trap to capture and send or post it, so easily part of the consumerist sharing culture to show where I was.
I took time to breathe, be present and wait for the colours to change, for the sun to slowly start showing itself as the day broke…truly a soulful moment through my choice and response!
In one of his daily reflections during his Lent40 series titled “choose life” Brian Draper referred to Anthony de Mello who said:
The great tragedy of life lies in how much we miss. Human beings are born asleep, live asleep, and die asleep. We raise children asleep, handle business deals asleep and enter the office asleep – spirituality is about waking up!
Soulfulness is about waking up, isn’t it! You have a choice to slip back into same old, same old, with negative energy, or to wake up! As I did. I wasn’t awake when I got up to fasten the rain cover, I awoke in that moment when I saw the colours and made a choice.
Go and be the choice, choose to be aware and to respond. Isn’t it so important at the moment in South Africa to CHOOSE our responses with great care and wisdom?
Which small choice can you make today to be the response, to wake up and not be asleep: during the next business meeting, the next interaction with a friend in need, the next conversation with a loved one or even the next time you walk or travel along a familiar road? It might even be to be present for the smell and taste of your next cup of coffee.
I learned that even the gentle (sometimes irritating) whisper of the Wind can be a reminder that I have a choice and it gave me a beautiful soulful sunrise.
May you wake up and choose to see soulfully!