Encouragement, Family, Strength, Wisdom

How an Afternoon Walk Turns into More


Sometimes a whining dog is my conscience. 

Chip, said dog, stared mournfully at his hanging leash. He reminded my busy self to take advantage of the warm weather and take a walk. Okay, I wasn’t busy. More like tied up in my own thoughts of problems my family and friends are going through.  Chip caught me looking at him, then his leash, and let out a bark. 

We strode past the walkways in the neighborhood, past the geese at the tiny man-made lake, and past the golf course.  Calmness drew into my brain with each breath of outdoor air. I often forget that the mind clears during these times.

We walked by shrubs that he wanted to pee on. Of course he wants to pee on every tree, bush, and hydrant, but this time I let him saunter up against the hedge. 

I noticed one purple flower in the center of the bush. It must have struggled through the thicket of broad leaves surrounding its thin wiggly stem. Lavender petals among dense greenery. Peeking out. 

It probably blew there from some far place. No other purple flowers on the path. From the dirt, through the thicket, up towards the sunlight, poking its head through a crowd of heavier leaves the flower swayed on its frilly stem. The petals soaked up sunlight.

I thought about God and the universe and how we find our way through the scrub of life. It’s often a fight, through the darkness of the undergrowth, weaving in and out of a temporary sunshine, sometimes on a crooked stem. But if we keep at it, believe in our strength, and keep pushing, we can enjoy the sunshine.

Chip tugged at his leash. He was ready to mark more territory. I snapped a photo. Who knew one could find encouragement among the hedges and wisdom in a scraggly flower. 

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