Monthly Archives: October 2017

Finding Inspiration In Small Places

It’s easy to feel weighed down by world events. I can’t control earthquakes, floods or hurricanes. I appear to have limited impact on government decisions although I do what I can.  Sometimes I worry that two megalomaniacs playing verbal chicken will trade barbs for bombs and end my life—at least life as I know it. But, as Alfred E. Newman always said, “What, me worry?”  Worry changes nothing and hinders my ability to enjoy NOW. Anyway, most of what I worry about resolves itself or never happens. What’s left can only be dealt with once it arrives.

Newspapers and the media love to report doom and gloom. Sensationalism sells. Here’s my advice. “Never start your day with the news. Never watch it right before you go to sleep.” For some, this is blaspheme. As for me, I prefer to start and end my day on a positive note.

Lately, I’ve been finding hope and inspiration in unlikely places. My chiropractor likes to post encouraging thoughts on her office walls, friendly reminders of what I already know but often forget…


Maybe we should all post positive thoughts on our walls.  How about “Remember to be kind” posted where we can see it every time we leave the house?

Recently, I found inspiration in two seemingly insignificant occurrences. Some unexpected flowers, a spider and a fly motivated me to write the following two parables.

The Parable of the Spider and the Fly

There is a window in my bathroom. It is too high for me to reach without a ladder, but it bathes the room in light. One day, a frantic buzzing caused me to look up. There, in a corner of the window, was a spider web containing a spider so tiny it was barely visible, and a large and juicy fly trying desperately to extricate itself from the web. The spider was closing in and, incomprehensible as it seemed, the miniature assassin was about to partake in the meal of a lifetime. Now, you might ask yourself, “What is so inspirational about a spider devouring a fly?” It was the seeming impossibility of the task at hand, and the chutzpah of the spider  that made me think. I thought about the challenges in my life that had seemed insurmountable, and the ones that face me today. I realized that, more often than not, I do succeed.That little spider reminded me that what seems impossible often isn’t. So dream big. Tackle that fly in whatever form it takes.

The following morning I entered the bathroom and looked up. The fly, the spider and even the web had disappeared.

The Parable of the Parking Lot Flowers

Beauty is often found in unexpected places, like a church parking lot. As I stepped out of my car, my foot just missed flattening a clump of small purple flowers. They had managed to push through the hard packed dirt and gravel, miraculously escaping car tires and busy feet. I bent down for a closer look. Each  miniscule flower was perfect. There were more—a few clumps under my car, some nestled against the wheel of the next vehicle. We’d had no rain to speak of for weeks. No one had purposefully planted them. They had simply appeared. A small miracle.

I thought of people who bloom in the unlikeliest of places, and the moving power of beauty—all because some flowers had the tenacity to challenge the odds and grow.