Friday, January 30, 2009

liquid of life...

As I perused the paper yesterday, I was struck by a recent article on water facts.. So often here in the Western world we take for granted the ability to drink from a faucet, to take a shower, and to plunge in a pool. Yet much of the world is without adequate fresh water and all too often we run water as if we have an endless supply. Here are some fascinating facts provided by the Science Museum that brought me to pause and reflect of the importance of conservation...

* 70% of the Earth's surface is water, yet only three percent is freshwater.

*According the Water International, less than 1% of the freshwater is directly accessible for human use.

* 2.7 tons of plastic are used each year in bottled water; only about 20% of that is recycled

* If you fill the bottle 1/4 full of oil... that is how much oil it took to make and produce the bottle

* It takes 74 gallons of water (including plant growth) to make a cup of coffee

*It takes 713 gallons of water to produce a T-Shirt (yes, we need to recycle!)

*According to Water International, 3.575 million people die each year from water related diseases (i.e. lack of clean water)

*Water International indicated that at any given time half of the world's hospital beds are related to water related diseases

*More than 2/3 of people without access to clean water live on less than $2 a day

*According to Water International, an American taking a 5 minute shower uses more water than many typical people in "slum nations" use in an entire day

*Poor people in these nations spend 5-10 x more than the rich for a liter of water in the same nation

These facts are shocking... and remind me of the importance of water conservation...

and stopping to be thankful for every glass of clean water. They too are a reminder that we must minimize pollution and work towards energy conservation. ... I've always been one to shy away from plastic bottled drinking water.... perhaps too I need to think of all those pop and juice containers? Recent studies discuss that many of the bottles are unhealthy anyways given the chemical compounds...

Perhaps I needed the news article to encourage me to take time to stop, think
and be thankful for a clean, clear, refreshing glass of water!!!


Monday, January 26, 2009

I Can Only Imagine

As I stop by this blogsite I do so with much thought tonight. I think of the precious nature of life and living and making the most of every moment, cherishing all experiences, each emotion, and every step of the journey.

Yesterday I learned of the death of a dear elderly man who graced our church. ... Though in his mid-80's, to his final days he sought not to focus on his own needs, but to give to others. ... This past year he had learned that I had inherited a coin collection from my dear late brother. He so generously indicated that he loves coins and volunteered to organize the collection as I know very little about the nature of coin collection. .. Though I insisted on paying him, he refused indicating he'd love to organize the collection and his only wish was a dinner out. Periodically he would update on the progress, I of course feeling that he was spending much too much time, he enjoying the process. ... Sadly, before learning of his death, we never got to share that dinner. ....

Life is so precious... we never know how our days will be counted. Yet it is in the faith of death, compromised health, or close calls as in accidents, that we are reminded of the precious nature of life. I have always been moved by the words of the song "I Can Only Imagine" by Mercy Me. I often think of my dear brother Brian who despite his epilepsy, learning disabilities and TBI ran marathons, biked across America, and owned his own business. I share a video today that I have sent to those most dear in the past. It is the song put to a video of the Hoyts, and extraordinary father-son connection.

Here's to you dear Brian.

I Can Only Imagine

I can only imagine
What it will be like
When I walk
By your side

I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When your face Is
before me
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

Surrounded by Your glory,
what will my heart feel
Will I dance for you Jesus
or in awe of you be still
Will I stand in your presence
or to my knees will I fall
Will I sing hallelujah,
will I be able to speak at all
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
When that day comes
And I find myself
Standing in the Son
I can only imagine
When all I will do Is forever
worship You
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
I can only imagine
When all I will do
Is forever,
forever worship you
I can only imagine

Blessings to anyone who stops by

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Invitation...

As I sat today waiting for an important research meeting, I glanced on the shelf of one of our partners. The book The Invitation by Oriah "Mountain Dreamer" sat captivatingly singing to me. ...

I saw these words she had written

and was so deeply moved. .....

The Invitation

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream of
or the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me
what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you
have touched the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled
and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy
fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know
if you can disappoint another
to be true to yourself.

If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see
Beautyeven when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source
your own life from its presence.

I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand
at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,


It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know
if you can get up
after the night
of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know
if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with meand not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me
where or what
or with whomyou have studied.
I want to know
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know
if you can be alone with yourself
and if you truly
like the company
you keep
in the empty moments.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


The effervescent tingle
permeates her mouth
whisking away cares

washing her in the tantilizing taste
of pesto's fresh cut
Olfactory bulbs light
from dim portions of past

sweet sensations arrive
a sensory bath

Basil your call
spice carry me on
lift spirits to heaven
sweet sensory song...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I am mindful how the most beautiful and precious things in life cannot be purchased, bought, nor bargained for.. belief, love, faith, hope, health... they are a fountain to the precious nature of life.

Look to your health; and if you have it, praise God and value it next to conscience; for health is the second blessing that we mortals are capable of, a blessing money can't buy.

Izaak Walton

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Thoughts at lunch time...

Amidst lunch hour today I stopped by the insightful blog of a friend as it discusses thoughts on why we do what we do and how we create meaning and happiness in our world. Recently, amidst the steadfast joy in my life that comes from my faith along with love of God-others-self, I hit a roadblock and was having a sad and difficult day both due to my own internal state, yet too given recent hardships and stressors several friends were facing. I stopped by various sites and chose to take yet another "Happiness test"... there are several available. Although I was feeling sad and stressed at the time, and wishing to nurture my own needs as well as be there for others, amidst the "down" state, I reached to an internal source of faith, love and comfort-- perhaps from the Lord, yet too in the subtle supportive messages from those around as well as the comfort and insight provided from personal writing. I thought of how even when we are sad, down, hurting, or having a difficult day, we can hold to optimism in the process keeping in mind the natural hills and valleys that come along in life. As one who works in mental health, I consider the difference between sad and depressed. The state of sadness is a mood, yet one can feel this way and still have optimism, hope, and a fervent love of life. Yet with depression often comes a hopeless outlook, lack of interest, and difficulty performing daily activiites. Perhaps as we work with individuals who feel depressed, or if any of you, we, or anyone we know or work with becomes depressed, in addition to the natural means of addressing the depression (i.e. meds, exercise, light therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, etc.)... efforts to consider means by which we can shed light on perspective and bring hope may prove fruitful in the long run. For those interested in the insightful blog I referred to, you may access it at: wonderful information!

I too have always found useful the Happier.Com website as it has many useful resources and self assessments:

So as to save my results (as quoted) from the self assessment, they are copied here:

YOUR RESULT: Balanced and Happy You are very balanced and well-rounded. When you hit an emotional funk or a frustrating situation, you have the ability to step back and carefully evaluate the problem and your response. Keep on doing what you are doing. But don't stress if you accidentally let a work issue spill into your personal life or handle a situation in a way you wish you hadn't. You are human, and mistakes are going to happen. The good news is that you'll take them all as learning experiences and be better for them in the end. Kudos to you!

Yeah, the concept of mood is fascinating... as is how we create, sustain, nourish, and respond to our moods. Perhaps it is a unique dance between our thought process, our mood, our actions, and our interactions (smile).

Blessings to anyone who stops by

Monday, January 12, 2009

Sometimes the simplest of messages can bring sunshine to the day...
Choose Daffodils

Friday, January 2, 2009

Thoughts on the Perplexity of Health...

I just read the news that John Travolta's 16 year old son died following a seizure. ... Though the heart always responds for those who lose children... this one hit me hard as too it was a seizure (behind the wheel) that killed my brother when he broke through his medications. Epilepsy continues to perplex the medical field. I am mindful of how amazing medicine is, yet too how much we know compared to a decade ago, and how little we know compared to a decade from now. ... The heart grows tender as thoughts of my dear brother revisit just now. As posted on my Christmas blog.. the holiday season brings such joy in spending time with those loved... yet too when we lose someone in this world pre-maturely via early death, and/or when grandparents, friends, and loved ones have died, rituals, routines, and the tides of the seasons change, and they are missed.

I bow in prayer today for the Travolta family and their pain

and too say a prayer of thanks for 30 wonderful years with dear Brian...

Sometimes the heart grows tender

yet is there not such beauty in relationships, life, and love?