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What do you see in this picture (credit to Rachel at Simi Valley Five Dollar Bookstore)? Do you just see a broken circle, sliced in half and unrepairable or do you see wings spread out and ready to soar?

Our perspective on all aspects of our lives can be skewed to the negative or the positive. How we view our challenges and those trials and tribulations I always talk about can not only move us into the light but move us toward darkness. As always, the choice is ours!

In Eugene Petersen's "The Message" he tells us this about how God helps us to gain perspective on our lives when things are just so overwhelming that we question whether we can take one more step, breathe one more breath, handle one more thing before we just give in and give up. He says this:

"He energizes those who get tired, gives fresh strength to dropouts. For even young people tire and drop out, young folk in their prime stumble and fall. But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, They run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind."

At around 10 pm last night, my almost 18 year old pup, Puddles, peacefully passed away and went to heaven to be with his older sister who left us two years ago. This past month and a half of our lives have been extremely exhausting and challenging as we dealt with his condition worsening daily and spending 24 hours a day on shifts with him to help manage his time left with us. This often meant sleepless nights, which led to grumpiness and flared tempers and questions, more often than not, of can I go on like this any longer?

Turning on one another, as well as turning toward the darkness, was something we struggled to avoid as we saw only a broken circle that was beyond restoration. The more exhausted our physical bodies were, the more exhausted our spirits were. We saw only impending tragedy and often couldn't focus on the 17 years that we had been gifted with such a fun-loving and sweet furry companion.

It took some deep introspective searching to help us to recognize that our perspective was indeed skewed. When we altered our focus to those things of the light, for example those funny times with him, the silliness he often exhibited, the love and joy he gave us, we were then able to see the great gift we had been given of loving another and receiving reciprocal love.

We now saw the wings spread wide to envelope us in our time of sorrow and grief because we knew from where are hope comes. As hard as this moment in time is for us, we know this is not the end. Reuniting is on the horizon as we too will soar on wings of eagles when we just hold to truth and change our perspective to one of love and light, receiving fresh strength and energy from the source of all life!

Rest in peace my beautiful one!

Today's poem for reflective journaling is for us to use to process any grief and sorrow in our lives:

"Change your perspective,

We are given wings to soar,

Find strength in the light."

And here is one not focused on grief:

“Broken circle or…

Perspective is our vision

Enfold it in love.”

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