I have a friend who knows I love sweet peas, so she offered me the ones she had germinated with her granddaughter in the spring. They were quite spindly, so I transplanted them very carefully, even placing twist ties to hold them to the fence! After one particularly blustery day I also cut up plastic cups to give them a bit more protection from the wind. My friend jokingly mentioned that she even had some friends praying for their survival. I thought: “How blessed I am to have a friend!”
Robert J. Wicks is a Psychologist, and in talking about his book “Everyday Simplicity” he told the story of Thomas Merton talking to an old monk. The monk told him he was “Not Okay!” and he thought he was losing his faith. Merton put his hand on him and said: “Courage comes and goes …hold on for the next supply!” Sometimes all that is needed to get us back on track is a bit of hope
Wicks went on to say that in order to maintain a healthy perspective on life, and not take ourselves too seriously we need four kinds of friends.
The prophet, who asks what voices are guiding your life.
The cheerleader, who supports you with clarity and kindness.
The harasser or teaser, who doesn’t let you take yourself too seriously.
The inspirational friend, who calls us to be all that we can without embarrassing us (and takes us where we are at!).
We can be working on self awareness and knowledge of ourselves but need the balance of caring for and protecting our souls, just as I cared for those sweet peas! A quote I wrote down is “The soul is like a plant which in the nursery is fed with growth hormones and watered daily. Take it out and put it in the ground and neglect it – it will die.” Naturally I noticed that the daily watering, pruning, and cutting of my sweet peas causes them to blossom more! Having a daily rule of prayer, spiritual reading, and scripture helps me to care for my soul.
Minnie Riperton, an African American singer, said, “Your wealth can be stolen, but the precious riches buried deep in your soul cannot.” The treasure deep in our souls is God.