Something extraordinary happened on my walk today.
I know this walking path quite well...I've walked it a hundred times or more. It's a peaceful path for the most part, with lovely trees, a pond, and benches every so often if one's in the mood for contemplation. It teems with wildlife, and I've occasionally felt I was in the midst of an animated Disney movie, with chipmunks, rabbits, birds, and deer scattering in front of me. I love walking here, and generally come away feeling refreshed and grateful for my bounty of blessings. I'm accustomed to the power of the beauty of the earth here.
Today was different. It rained last night. The air was charged with the moisture and the heft of the rain. I began my walk as usual, down the old familiar path, but felt more than the usual appreciation. My senses were heightened. The feel of the wet grass, the scent in the air, the birds calling to each other...it all felt new.
I had been walking for a few minutes, watching with amusement a father and son baiting a hook to try their hand at fishing in the pond. Suddenly, I noticed something unfamiliar out the corner of my eye. Looking ahead on the path now, I noticed for the first time what I was approaching. There was a giant mass of white blossoms swaying in the breeze, as if beckoning me their way. Along the entire eastern border and around the curve of the path, thirty feet high, the waving wall of white called. I walked slowly, arms at my sides, gazing at this glorious display. Wild Honeysuckle, I guessed. I breathed deeply, and smelled the air dripping with their sweet scent. I felt myself enter their midst, and without thinking, I turned my palms outward as I walked. My arms raised, and I felt a jubilant rush. My arms went higher, and I gratefully pulled the scent and the spirit of the flowers to my breast.
I looked down at the path I was on, strewn with white flowers. Where had they come from? Surely not from the bushes I saw before me...they were still laden with flowers. I continued farther into the snowy path to the secluded corner of the trail. The air here was still. Heavy. So heavy with the sweetness of the scent. I walked slowly now, in respectful awe of this new experience. I felt embraced by flowers. Off in the distance I could hear children on the playground, traffic on the street down the hill. But here in this spot, I was alone with my Maker.
Then, out of the bough of a tree overhead, fell a small white bouquet, the tip of a branch of this flowering shrub, I guess. It landed directly in front of me. I stopped in my tracks. It was a beautiful little perfect nosegay. I picked it up and put it to my face, inhaling the magically sweet scent. What a gift I had been given! I rested there in that spot for several minutes, soaking in all that was around me.As I composed myself and continued my walk, nosegay in hand, I heard myself say, "Lord, Gaia, Mother Earth...make me an instrument of Thy peace."
I have started down a new path in my life, much to my surprise. I'm uncertain where this path will lead. I know there will be obstacles, and I know I will need the help of friends to sustain me during my journey. But I know that I'm on the right path now, one which will lead to outward adventure and inward peace. I hope you'll travel with me occasionally.