How Gratitude Moves Us Forward By: Amy Adams
“Ask and ye Shall Receive.”
WOW! I can’t tell you how true this has become in my life as of late.
My daughter and me, we say it often. I love that we share this profound belief in a very powerful Universal Law.
I’d like to illustrate for you the myriad of ways in which this statement has played out in my life recently.
This is as much an exercise in Acknowledgment and Gratitude for me as I hope it is a depiction of Divine Providence for you.
I am originally from a medium-sized town in Pennsylvania. Four years ago, I experienced very strong inner stirrings to move out of that town. This caused me immense anguish and turmoil as my children live in that town, and I was (and still am) clear that they belong there. After two years of fighting and resisting my still, small voice within, I came to a point where I had to do something, anything, to release the pressure I was feeling due to “arguing with God.” The first baby step I took was moving out of the house in which I lived with my two children and their father. I moved into the house next door. As challenging and painful as this was, ultimately, it brought what I’ve come to call “Soul Relief.” The best way I can describe to you what it is I mean by “Soul Relief” is to liken it to what I imagine Jesus must have felt when he surrendered on the Cross. His personality struggled with his “fate” for some time. He even cried out, “My God, My God, why have you abandoned me?” And yet, when he aligned with his Soul, that is, when he surrendered to what Life was choosing for him, he experienced immense and expansive Joy. This was in spite of how much he Loved those he was “leaving behind.”
Due to circumstances beyond my control, after this initial move, I would ultimately end up moving four more times until I ended up where I am today. This last move brought me full circle to my original guidance to move out of the town in which I was living. Now, I won’t suggest that there was anything “wrong” with the moves in between. In fact, I suspect that they were what one might call very purposeful detours. Possibly, they were even God’s way of easing me into my most recent decision. On one hand, it felt like “prolonging the agony.” On the other, it felt like a gentle process, filled with baby steps, weaning and time for everyone to assimilate.
All along, I was provided for in miraculous ways. In fact, there are way too many examples to discuss here, as this would certainly become a novel rather than a blog post. I want to bring us to the present day, so as to share the latest and greatest about how I am so Blessed.
Just before I began writing this article, I read the following quote from the book, “Creating Money: Keys to Abundance” by Sanaya Roman and Duane Packer:
“You know when you are on the right path; doors open, people appear, coincidences happen.”
I like to call the coincidences “synchronicities.” And there have been so many in my life recently, particularly since I’ve stepped it up a notch in terms of following my inner promptings.
Two occurred during the span of time in which I began this article several weeks ago.
First, I was sitting on a bench outside the library in my new little village. A gentleman made his way to the bench and took a seat beside me. This was fine with me until he attempted to strike up a conversation. I found myself feeling annoyed at the interruption. Moments passed, and I decided to make a conscious choice to be grateful instead. I engaged in the conversation, and he proceeded to show me his penny collection. Before it was all said and done, he handed me a penny to keep as my very own. This was a precious gesture as I had just been lamenting (in my mind) the fact that I was literally counting pennies to make ends meet that week. I have saved that very penny to this day as reminder of wishes fulfilled.
Second, as I was sitting and conversing with this gentleman, a woman walked by with her husband and daughter. She looked at me and said, “Oh, I was just telling my husband about the young woman who gave me such lovely compliments last night.” (I had complimented her after a wonderful performance at a local theater production). Anyway, we got to talking and realized our daughters were close in age. Just before I had planted myself at the library, I was walking along thinking, “Gee, it would be nice for my daughter to have a friend with whom to play when she visits.” Oh, and, did I mention a new friend I had met at a local fair was also in the theater production and had provided me with a complimentary ticket so that I could enjoy the amazing performance?!!!
“Thank You, Thank You, Thank You” has become my prayer in things large and things small. In fact, I am realizing this very second as I write this that a prayer of Gratitude in this very moment would do well for my current state of mind:
“Thank You, God, that this problem is already solved for me.”
I borrowed that one from one of my favorite authors, Neale Donald Walsch, who wrote the “Conversations With God” series along with many other wonderful books.
Yes, this moment, I am feeling regret and stress about not moving forward with a certain aspect of my life. Paradoxically, it seems, to be Grateful even for the fact that I’ve placed myself in this so-called conundrum is how I will, ultimately, end up moving forward.
Yes, Gratefulness for everything-things past, things present and things future puts us in the Flow of life. Worry and regret keep us stuck. Gratitude frees energy, unlocks doors and, most importantly, opens our minds to possibilities we hadn’t before considered. As a group of my friends like to say, “This or something better.”
A Prayer of Gratitude is our resounding “Yes!” to Life. I am grateful even for the times when I’m not feeling so grateful.
Here are some ideas for practicing Conscious Gratitude:
- Keep a Gratitude Journal. In it, each day, write 5 things past, 5 things present and 5 things future for which you are Grateful (yes, you can affirm and express gratitude for things which have not yet occurred-in fact, this is a very powerful way by which to draw them to you).
- When something occurs and you don’t like it or agree with it, take a moment of Silence for yourself and express a simple “Thank You.” Affirm that, in doing so, you are opening up space for the hidden Blessing to present Itself.
- For ½ hour each week, dance a “Dance of Gratitude.” Find a space all to yourself, put on some of your favorite uplifting music, and let your body do the rest. All the while, intend to express the Joy, the Gratitude, that you are.
- Randomly raise your arms to the sky, opening your heart as you tilt slightly back. Then, bring the palms of your hands together and slowly lower them to your heart as you bow slightly forward. Breathe in as you raise your arms and out as you lower them. This is a lovely and simple embodiment of being Grateful for everything “outside” of us and everything inside of us.
- Once a week, walk a “Walk of Gratitude.” Walk for ½ hour by yourself (no cell phone), and, during that time, meditatively express your Gratitude for anything your little heart desires-parts of your body, various natural wonders present on your walk, people in your life-anything!
Do these things for one week, and watch…
You’ll be so Grateful you did!!!
Nature’s majesty in the backyard.
fast-moving and gorgeous water.
even as it comes up against
so many rocks along the way.
Kind of reminds me of my life these days.
Dead leaves, as beautiful now as when they lived.
And in their decomposition, the beauty remains.
Are they really dead?
Are we, ever?
I get the sense that Life goes on,
for the leaves and for us.
in its emptiness and in its fullness,
Life goes on.
Sometimes, I get lost in the expansiveness.
Well, always, I do, really.
In the expansion, any sense of “I” just falls away.
Then I sit with this water and these leaves,
and “I” sort of creeps back in to enjoy it all.
It’s a mystery to me, I must say.
At first, it’s frightening to allow the falling away.
Until I choose to be one with It.
And I become
the leaf falling from the tree,
preparing for winter’s blanket.
Yes, like nature, I expand
and I contract,
so I can play,
in the world of form.
Even as I write this,
my daughter sits beside me
in all her glory,
on her chosen rock,
in her own little creative world.
And I know
is bigger even than us,
than this Mother/Daughter thing.
Yet, my heart bursts with Joy
that I get to experience and savor
just a taste of It
in this moment in time.
I Am Grateful.
For All of It.
Whatever appearance It takes.
At times, afraid to succumb.
Still, it’s nothing like the fear
that kept me locked inside my own mind for so long,
when I was doing the same ol’ same ol’
day in and day out,
year after year.
It is decided.
While I walk this Earth,
I shall play
in whatever way my Soul moves me to.
I shall Love
because that’s all I really know how to do.
And I shall Live
in the Space,
With and for…
Amy Adams is a poet/writer who wishes to serve Humanity and the Cosmos by authentically expressing what it has come to mean to her to be Divinely Human. Her initial inspiration came from what she calls a “tried and true ‘Dark Night of the Soul’ experience“. Insights, poems and writings continue to pour through her to this day, and she will write as long as writing is what’s in front of her. In addition to writing, she enjoys dancing, singing, walking, reading, nature, conversations, playing…
Joy has become her guide, and it is her intention to allow Joy to Be contagious, sharing It with everyone she meets through her unique gifts and, ultimately, her Life lived.
“Humaira” is a name that was gifted to her at the time the writings began. Amy has come to know Humaira as a very clear and wise aspect of her Being, one who is not censored, but who lives naturally, simply and from a place of Aliveness. When Amy aligns with the “Humaira energy”, a co-creative synergy seems to occur, and it is magical, beyond even the words.
Look for my first book, coming in August 2012:
“Book of Love: Poems to Light Your Way Home”
Follow Me @:
My Blog (The Dancing Pen)
***Amy is available for poetry readings and playshops/workshops , all related to Coming Home to ourselves and Shining our Light to the world and beyond!