If you’ve ever hung out with contractors, you find out that what looks complex really isn’t, most of the time.
How do you build a house? One nail at a time.
They’ve laid the groundwork so it’s easy for the next guy to follow. It’s literal.
What’s a screwdriver? A thing that drives screws.
A pile driver? A thing that drives piles (poles) into the ground.
If you were on the construction site for the first time and someone asked you to get the drywall, you could be very safe in passing over the lumber for that thing over there that looks like it could make a nice, dry wall.
The language is direct and no-nonsense.
When my husband used to have me look in the shop for something that he lost, I used to automatically say,”What does it look like?” because I assumed I did not know. But over time, I would learn to think about what he just said, literalize it, and know it when I saw it. A rubber mallet? A thing that bangs stuff and instead of something hard like metal on the end, it’ll probably be made of rubber.
I think they called it a “shop” because a carpenter has so many tools that you’d think would do the job but don’t, so he has to go “shopping” among the 125 different kinds of hammers and 20,145 clamps to find just the right one for the job.
It’s like Mitch Hedberg said: I want to get a job naming kitchen appliances. That seems easy, you know? Refrigerator, toaster, blender. You just say what the thing does, then you add “er.”
It would be fantastic if everything in life was as straightforward.
Feeling Around For The Light Switch
I once wrote about the Spirit To English Dictionary. We keep getting these hints, signs, and sychronicities but most of the time we don’t get it right away. We have to figure it out like it’s a puzzle. At least those of us who are here are aware that there is such a thing as Spirit and it is in communication with us all of the time. That’s a head start, I guess.
The longer I am at this living thing, the more I wonder if I am going backward to basics?
When we have those Big Picture questions about our lives, how do we solve them?
After following the Home Study course all of these years, it seems like the farther I travel, the more basic it gets. There is no need to complicate matters, but at the same time, we often act like we are feeling around in the dark looking for the light switch but we’ve all come to my house where the apprentice electrician didn’t follow the plan and the switch does not appear where you would expect it to be – within arms reach of the doorway.
So we stumble around in there touching all of the walls at arm height. Finding nothing, we start to wonder how far off this plan is, anyway? Might they have put it on the floor instead? No. They wouldn’t have put it on the ceiling, would they? Do we need to find a ladder? If we don’t have anything to climb on, how are we going to find it?
Sometimes it takes someone with the basic contractor skill set to point out that there is no light switch, but there’s a book of matches over there or a lantern on the table.
When we cannot find a job, at length, and we have run out of money.
When nothing turns out like we expected it to.
When someone dies.
When we get sick.
When we try and fail.
When the romance doesn’t happen.
When we see the inconsistency between what goes on in our intuitive minds as “purpose” or “destiny” versus the obligations we have created.
Your Life Is Like A Three-Legged Dog?
I was observing the recovery of my dog that got hit by a car. It seems like even if I walk him every day, nice and slow so he uses the leg, he is atrophying before my eyes.
Now I know that there was the week that it rained every day when I did not get to walk him at all. Then there were those days when I was just too tired and the days when there was too much homework and the days when it was freezing. Maybe “every day” is an overstatement.
Or, maybe if I had him walking every single day for five times as long, he’d still end up a three-legged dog. We don’t know the underlying cause and we don’t know what is actually possible. We just know that we have been told by the vet that effort is directly correlated to recovery, and we wonder if we had tried harder, been more consistent, found a better place to train with more physical challenges, would he be doing better? If we re-double our efforts, will it turn things around? Or is it too late?
There have been times when people have given me the answer to my life puzzles, just from logic. Other times they have been insightful from their life experience or intellect or intuition or all three, and come up with the answer easily.
The puzzles I am good at are the ones where I just listen to people talk and I hear them answering their own questions. Or at least, that’s how I hear it. The answer comes in the listening. I just repeat back to them what I have heard so they can hear what they said.
It can take a third party to show you what you already know but just can’t see. As Don says in The Rosie Project,”Humans often fail to see what is close to them and obvious to others.”
Lately there have been so many questions that seem unanswerable. The basic life situations where we find ourselves stuck but none of the alternatives seem on the gut level to provide a solution.
It feels to us like if we asked Spirit they would reply,”It is there right in front of your face. The answer is obvious.” We can’t see it though, nor can our friends, spouse, counselor, or intuitive.
So it’s not that obvious, at least not to us. The answer could be that “this is not in your life plan” or “this is not possible.”
But when it comes to things like eating, employment, or living in the same country as your husband (in my case) it is a head scratcher that the answer does not present itself.
You Don’t Get Hindsight For The Problems In Front Of Your Face
There’s a saying,”Rejection in God’s protection.” In hindsight, we can see how that plays out.
But we don’t live in hindsight. We live with the unknown that is right here, right now.
Best we can do may be to remember how it has worked for us before. If I look back on the last seven year cycle, I can see why it took me three years to be given a job. I can see the benefit to the times I was banging my head on the table because the bank wouldn’t talk to me about my house. I can remember despair and I can remember breakthrough. I can remember wonder and I can remember connection, and exactly what brought on those things. I can remember mantras I picked up in some place I thought was superfluous, but those things I kept reminding myself of are what got me through that week.
When we look back, we can see the problems we created ourselves and how we led ourselves or were otherwise led to their solutions. Usually they worked out far, far better than they would have if we just proceeded like a bull in a china shop, intent on “our way is the only way.”
No. The Divine works miracles in our lives. Amazing things occur behind the scenes. Sometimes you can just feel how much work must have been going on, to get you to the end solution. It can be so much greater than you can imagine. At times you can see how you didn’t have all of the necessary information to make an informed decision, but you got guided to the right outcome anyway. That is not an accident. It’s by the old “hand greater than mine” – it has to be, because coincidences in that number just aren’t likely.
So when I am discouraged, when nothing makes sense, when I wish I had the answer already, I remind myself that it really IS all in good time. I remember that I don’t know all of the puzzle pieces, but we each have the most amazing teams working on our behalf. If we ask the questions, eventually we get the answers. It has to be so – because we have asked and there are no vacuums in the human experience when it comes to asking these kind of questions. They get answered.
Just reminding you, in case you forgot.
There Is Magic In Your Artistry
Patti Smith said, “You keep doing your work because, you know, you have to, because it’s your calling. Some people say, ‘but don’t you think success spoils you as an Artist’, because you’re a punk rocker, you don’t want to have a hit record? And I say, fuck you. You know, one just does their work for the people. And the more people you touch, the more wonderful it is. You don’t do your work and say,’I only want the cool people to read it.’ You want everyone to be transported or hopefully inspired.”
Whatever your work is, keep going. You do inspire others. Usually they don’t tell you! You are probably unaware of the 99.999% of people who you have impacted with your version of genius, that little seed that only you came into life with so it could germinate and grow.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if, when we’re having a bad day and wondering how we’ll make it through, or what it’s all for, we could have people start knocking on our door. Each one would tell us what we did for them. How we helped. How we inspired. What they did with that inspiration. The line would be so long that we couldn’t see the end of it. Finally we’d raise a hand, say thank you for coming and letting me know, and go to bed to recover.
Yes, you too.