Ripples

*Thanks to Henry Petty for serving as today’s guest contributor!*

Prayer is powerful.  It touches base with our Creator.  Think about adding this exercise to your prayers and see how it impacts you. Not only will it show loving kindness for yourself, but for others as well.

With eyes closed, imagine a pool of clear, still water.  Now, imagine a little raindrop hits the water, and you see a little ripple.  Imagine that first circle of the ripple and say:

May I be happy
May I be peaceful
May I be safe and free from suffering

Say this several times, and then imagine the second ripple, say:

May they be happy
May they be peaceful
May they be safe and free from suffering

As the ripple grows and grows, repeat this for people you know, the government, your boss, the earth, world peace, England, the atmosphere, so on and so forth.  Let it grow and grow, wide and broad.  But realize this started with just you – the center of it all, the first ripple.

Washed away

On our first day of vacation at Gulf Shores, we decided to hit the beach, take pictures, and cool off. James is always more adventurous than I am, and he jumped into the water and started swimming out into the ocean past the breakers right away. I timidly stood at the shore and slowly moved further out.

He grabbed my hand and told me to follow him past the breakers into calmer water. I didn’t really want to, but I decided to give it a chance, so I followed him. A few minutes passed, and a gigantic wave crashed into me, submerging me for a moment and knocking my very expensive prescription sunglasses off my head.

“Where are your sunglasses?” James asked, frantically looking around in the water.

“Gone,” I said. “That’s several hundred dollars just gone.”

I headed back to shore.

“Why don’t you stay out here? There’s nothing we can do about it. They’re gone. We’ll just get you some new ones,” he said.

“I know there’s nothing I can do about it, but it makes me sick to lose something so expensive. And I don’t feel like swimming when I’m upset. That’s not fun to me,” exclaimed an emotional, water-logged, pregnant wife.

I headed to the beach and laid on my towel, contemplating how to get a copy of my prescription while two states away and get prescription sunglasses made in a timely fashion. James came to join me and comfort me.

“Babe, really it’s okay. It’s just money. And luckily we can afford to replace them, so we will just do that. Let’s go back and take care of it right now,” he said.

So we did. And of course, it all worked out fine. Sure, we had to alter our plans that day and the following day to accommodate my lack of sunglasses and the time it took to make new ones. But we found other fun things to enjoy and used the time to shop and rest together. Everything was fine.

I’m not sure how James maintains such composure most of the time, or how he can almost always see the horizon in spite of the crashing waves in front of him, but I’m grateful he does.

And I’m grateful I lost my sunglasses that day. Maybe every time I put my new sunglasses on, I’ll remember that things are only as big a deal as I let them be.