You may have heard my story of growing up in a family with an alcoholic father and an enabling mother. A match made in dysfunction heaven to be sure.
These childhood experiences have impacted each of my siblings in different ways. For me, growing up in this chaotic environment left me with feelings of uncertainty. I was uncertain what I would return home to after a day at school. I was uncertain about what I would wake up to each day. I was uncertain about what awaited with each holiday or birthday celebration. The uncertainty left little desire to invite friends to my home, so I more frequently visited them at their homes.
Over the years, I developed a deep need to have consistency, tranquility and some predictability in my life. Having children brought this need front and center to my attention. Noise and confusion sometimes reign supreme in a household with three children, their friends, dogs, cats, hamsters, turtles, an occasional snake and the remaining menagerie of creatures that were brought home. I savored the years of rearing children and the sounds and activities of life they brought to our home.
This desire for order showed up in my clothes closet. For years, all of my clothing has been meticulously organized, beginning with short skirts, long skirts, tank tops, tops with short sleeves, tops with long sleeves followed by pants. Everything was also organized and hung according to color. First came white, cream, light brown and dark brown , yellow, pink, red, light green, dark green, light blue, medium blue, dark blue, grey and black. I always knew where everything was in the closet and it was quite easy to hang things in this orderly fashion on laundry day or after a trip to the drycleaner. It was also simple to find items quickly every time I opened my closet.
Fast forward a few decades. Perhaps it was the recent Daily Word “flexibility”. Perhaps it was years consciously devoted to my spiritual growth. Perhaps it is the pleasure I have experienced in the process of seeking what is mine to do that led me to disorganize my closet. Last week, I hung blues in the middle of reds, blouses with long sleeves next to the sleeveless ones. Complete and utter disorganization! Each morning as I chose my clothes for the day, I had to make my way through my clothes. “Oh, it’s been a while since I’ve worn this.” I thought and created a whole new outfit. How fun it became to seek and to explore my closet each morning.
As I have sometimes made my way through life’s confusing or disorganized moments, I have had lovely experiences of serendipity over predictability. I have found delightful surprises in the seeming disorder. I have found joy and laughter as the universe surprises me. As I allow my human need for order to lighten up and let predictability go away, the sweet flow of Divine Order can be revealed. Life becomes sweet. Like the sweet nectar of the first ripe peach of the season, or sliding my kayak into the water for my first excursion of spring, I experience the joys of the flow. I feel certain about life’s offering. I noticed that over time, if have built a strong foundation of spiritual truths upon which my human life now stands, the uncertainties of life are no longer frightening because I know and better understand the spiritual laws that are at work in the universe. Whatever comes, I know that God is in all. I practice seeing with my God eyes the good that is in each experience. When the vision of good is initially blurry, I clean my God goggles and look again and again until I see good.
The feelings of ease and welcoming the gentle surprises that living in harmony with humanity and creation affords me, the exquisite pleasure of spontaneous joy of unplanned dinner with treasured friends, stopping by the lake on my drive home and parking my car just as the sun sets over the horizon. I am gifted the moment I sit in my backyard with Micah, my loyal Golden Retriever by my side and glance through the treetops at the fullness of the moon above.
Now I ask, “Is there a closest that would like to be disorganized in your life?”
Sunday is Mother’s Day. Let’s pause together to honor those who have been mother figures in our lives. Please join me for “Momma said There Would be Days Like This”. As always I’m saving a seat for you!