She had asthma. She had allergies. She had glasses.
She had buck teeth. She broke them.
She had five dads and no dads. She had one mom and no mom.
She had a grandma who saved her.
Her grandma died. Her dad died. Her mom did not die.
She tortured frogs and flies. She set fires.
She had no boyfriends.
She had a white candle, a light inside her.
She ran away at 15.
She was saved again. She had a testimony.
She was a shining example of Christ’s love.
She sang. She danced. She grew her hair long.
She won an Optimist Award.
She got contacts, braces. She grew beautiful.
She was in a pageant. She didn’t win.
She went to college. She was raped at gunpoint.
She questioned her religion.
She did not question her faith.
She got married. She bought a house. She got divorced.
She had children! She welcomed them.
She and her children taught each other.
She worked. She traveled. She wrote.
She had boyfriends. She danced salsa.
She married a young man. She danced with him, sang with him.
She traveled to his country. She was loved by his family.
She tried to have his child. She failed.
She was betrayed. She questioned her love.
She did not question her faith.
She watched him grow.
She welcomed him back.
She and her family lived, loved, worked, grew together.
She sang. She danced.
Remember that sign Lucy used to hang over her kiosk? Consultations 5 cents, I think. Well, I made at least a dime this past week, more like 15 cents! Two very close real life friends and one online friend shared relationship issues with me. I listened as best I could, made suggestions if I thought it appropriate and mostly just reassured them that their inner wisdom would lead them to the next right steps. I received emails this morning from all three of them; all have made progress and are feeling much more positive about the direction of their relationships.
I remember a coworker from an old job had a screensaver scrolling across her computer screen, white letters on a turquoise background. “Do the next right thing”, it echoed itself, all day long. This was way before the Spike Lee movie “Do the right thing.” The phrase just hit me. It struck me immediately as the only piece of advice a person ever needed. I really believe we all can access our intuition, our spirit self. We all have a Source, whether we call it God or something else. I really believe we are ALL led – it is just a matter of whether or not we listen and then are willing to follow. “Do the next right thing”. What I like so much about it is, not only does it remind us to focus on what is RIGHT, it both encourages action (“do”) and limits that action (“next”). Ahh – simplicity. I just need do whatever most needs doing next. The old longest journey/single step, eat the elephant/one bite, “one day at a time” concept. We all KNOW this stuff, right? Yet somehow we allow ourselves to be paralyzed into inaction because all we can see is the unattainable SOMEDAY contrasted against the unacceptable NOW. The goal is SO beautiful and so unreal; our current circumstances SO paltry and in-our-face. No wonder we just give up before we even begin.
I remember being so confused during my marriage crisis. I honestly did not know WHAT the next right thing even was most of the time. I was reduced to the bare minimum – praying for peace and serenity, for me and for him. I had no clue what the future held in terms of our marriage. I didn’t even know whether or not to answer the phone, or if I did what to say, or whether to say anything. At those times, the next right thing was nothing at all until I got clear guidance, another shine of the flashlight on the next few feet of the path. Hard? God yes it was hard. But the guidance was worth waiting for, every single time. So. “the next right thing” – and JUST the NEXT right thing. Let’s all do only that, right now.