It’s amazing how little things can mean so much.  Music can trigger a deep emotion that is normally locked away.  The sight of the sun can bring peace to the heart.  The smell of something can bring up a memory that you haven’t had in years.

I walked outside to this beautiful scent that reminded me of my childhood and a Cat Steven’s song.    The forest is damp with rain.  That scent brings a sense of magic, new life, and wonderment.  It’s the smell of a new morning, and endless possibilities.

Sometimes I picture my life like a chose your own adventure book.  It’s full of interesting characters, scary moments that test my bravery, and sometimes my path leads to very hard realities.  I know I’ve had to start over a few times.

The last few months I’ve been picking up my book and trying to make the right choices.  Transition has been the theme of this year, and while I normally love adventure I’m feeling weariness in my travels.  The great highs of my journey have been met with some lows of loss in the changes.

In my early 20s I wrote a life statement for myself that includes, “To live without regrets, to love without condition…”  As I walked outside this morning this was my prayer.  To choose to live my life, not being held back by others choices, or even my own.  I was reminded that today is a new morning full of magic, new life, and wonderment… and Cat Stevens’ song.

Morning has broken, like the first morning.
Black bird has spoken, like the first bird.
Praise for the singing!  Praise for the morning!
Praise for them springing, fresh from the Word!

Sweet the rain’s new fall, sunlit from heaven.
Like the first dewfall on the first grass.
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden,
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass.

Mine is the sunlight!  Mine is the morning.
Born of the one light, Eden saw play!
Praise with elation, praise ev’ry morning,
God’s recreation of the new day!


‘The greatest explorers,’ she said, ‘are the explorers of the human heart.’ (The Sum of Us)

The first time I heard Harry Mitchell speak those words, they touched my soul.  Words spoken to share wisdom with his son, given with a heart full of hope that he would experience the love Harry had with his own wife.  I was swept away by the movie, seeing the journey of life.

While I dearly love this film, this blog isn’t about the amazing father/son relationship they had… It’s about taking chances with your heart.  It’s about living life with no fear of heartbreak.  It’s about taking the leap, even when it may lead to a dead end.

I’ve lived my share of heartache.  I’ve experienced friendships that end with that brutal killer silent treatment.  I’ve been disregarded by boyfriends that had ‘found something better.’  I’ve had the pain of best friends moving across the world.   I’ve experienced the loss of a dear friend taking her own life.  I’ve lived heartbreak.

At times I thought I couldn’t take another.  I would rather be alone, have my walls up high, and know that I was safe.  I would rather not let people in, because I couldn’t handle ‘the pain of it all’ (for those of you who know the movie “the agonizing pain”).

But something amazing always happens… Time passes, my prayers are answered, my wounds seem less severe.  I find forgiveness in myself, peace in my heart, and a joy that what happened made me a wiser person.  While I’m not perfect at this, I’ve learned to grow from those hurts, and find myself ready to let someone back in.

I’ve recently experienced this.  I’ve had the opportunity to open my heart and my life.  I took the chance knowing that I was REALLY taking a chance…   I am living without fear.  This morning, I woke up a little blah, but Harry’s quote came to mind… “The greatest explores, are explores of the human heart.”

Being an explorer of the human heart isn’t a pretty job.  It takes time, effort, honestly.  It means being real, showing your ugly side, and can be painful, humiliating, at times tragic.  It can also be beautiful, life changing, humbling, and amazing.  It can be the sweet moment of connecting with someone on a deeper level, laughing with them about something stupid, and can make you feel like the luckiest person in the world.

I know that it can be hard, but I also have experienced the ecstasy of a life of love.  That is what I want.

I want to know when I’m old and gray, that I have no regrets in my heart area.  I want to know that when I cared for people they knew it.  When I had the chance at romance, I took it.  That when heartache arose, I forgave without condition.

So, for today, this is the path I choose.  To live without regret, to love without condition, to give of my heart without fear… and to let people know that I care.

Have you ever had one of those mornings?  You know the morning where everything seems to go wrong?  I have… I’ve had more than I can count, but a while ago I had one I can’t forget.

It was the typical bad morning.  I overslept, I couldn’t find my keys, they messed up my order at the coffee shop, I got cut off on my way to work, and someone was in my normal parking spot at the Union Gospel Mission where I worked.

I walked into the normal routine of breakfast being served, but had my attention drawn to a homeless man sitting down with his food tray.  He was haggard looking, had a tear in his coat, and I remember something in his beard.  His friend at the table greeted him with a typical hello, something like, “Hey Man, how’s it goin?”

His answer has changed my life.

“The sun is out, and I’m alive.  I can’t complain.”

Wow… That morning, I had already complained a lot.  I had complained about that fantastically warm bed that I couldn’t get out of.  I had complained about the wonderfully overpriced coffee I could afford.  I had complained about the luxury of being able to park my car and walk farther than normal.

Years later, and I still think about that comment.  When I’m tempted to dislike the rain, I try to remember there are people with tarps covering them, trying to stay dry.   When I’m frustrated at the long line at the bank, I try to remember I am one of the lucky people who have a few bucks in it.  When I’m tired because I was up late watching TV, I remember that I have a warm bed to wake up in.

Life is good.  God is faithful.  And even when things don’t go my way I can always remember, “The sun is out, and I’m alive.  I can’t complain.”