SGLY: Being better
The birds are singing within earshot but out of my sight. They are waiting out the heat of the day in the cool belly of the trees. My dog pants — her pink tongue rises and falls in a patch of shade under the porch where I sit. The sound of the air conditioning units kick in and remind me that there are cooler places to be than outside on a Texas summer day. But I remain for a little while longer in an intoxicating state of comfort.
Even though it is not lit, I can smell the citronella candle beside me when a breeze passes over my lap. The smell tickles my nose. Occasionally, the fragrance upon the new blooms of yellow roses lingers long enough to make me turn my head and give them a thankful nod. Little white puffs float from a bit of branched green from my neighbor’s yard into my view. They look like snow-filled bubbles, and the child in me wants to get up and chase them.
Amazing how so much arrives in stillness. The balance and nature of things reveal themselves — the many ways we adapt, blend, and accommodate one another. One action sparks another like the wind picking up the scent of a candle that tickles my nose or the birds’ hidden songs creating a symphony for my ears.
I would have experienced none of this had I not been content to remain still. The world is so busy that we have failed to truly realize how uneven we have become. We look through slanted lenses and expect to see an accurate view.
We are off-balance.
We have forgotten the importance of stepping outside of our agenda, opinions, and feelings and truly hearing and seeing one another. Somewhere along the way we have either forgotten or forgot to care that our actions spark other actions and reactions. We have lost the desire to work together. Consequently, we no longer see the value of something different. “Different” has become a threat rather than a thread to cultivate and celebrate the best in each of us.
Many have become so accustomed to nitpicking that they have pecked their vision blind to the fact that they are contributing to the low morale of those around them. They have become covert haters cloaked in self-righteous justification and condescending smiles. We have become a world of people who trust less and less and dislike more and more. And when the world gives the bulk of their limited voice to their disagreements, we become deaf to our need for balance, adaptivity and community.
The breeze will eventually come. What scent will it pick up and carry from you to share with the world? Are you scattering positivity and kindness or poisoning your environment with cattiness and callousness?
May we be challenged this week to sit still for a little while and allow God’s display of nature to remind us of the need for balance and the value of working together. May we put our fight into being better rather than thinking our way is always better.
As the dog finds solace in the shade, may we too find peace in the best of what the other provides.
SGLY, dear reader.
(Smile, God Loves You.)
Tiffany Kaye Chartier is a Christian author and opinion columnist. Submit feedback and connect for more soul lifts on Facebook: Tiffany Kaye Chartier; Instagram:@tiffanysgly; and Twitter: @tiffanychartier. The views and opinions expressed here are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect those of Texoma Marketing and Media Group.