Have you ever attempted to “run a quick errand” only to have the Universe decide otherwise? How did you respond? Did you get irritated? Or did you look past the obvious and see the gift – even if the gift wasn’t evident?
A recent visit to the grocery store reminded me how we must look past the obvious to receive the truly valuable gifts of life.
Third in line (with my 4 items) at the only register opened, I was behind a woman with a full cart. In front of her was a woman paying by check and a problem was encountered during the processing. A line was quickly forming behind me – including sound affects from an unhappy toddler.
My initial reaction was one of judgment. “Who pays with a check?” Fortunately I was aware that the thought was instantly creating agitation and discomfort within. Faced with a choice, I could continue to embellish that thought or choose a better feeling thought. Right 21 (page 63) in Embrace Your Rights – “I have the right to take necessary and appropriate steps to improve my life, even if these steps are difficult, uncustomary, or seemingly illogical to me or others.”
The only better feeling thought within my grasp was the word love. I focused my attention on that word realizing I could be that woman, or she may be a loved one. Immediately I felt calmer and lighter. After all, I did not cause, nor could I control the event that was unfolding, but I certainly could control my thoughts which directly cause my feelings.
As the manager assisted the cashier it was determined to be a computer issue. The manager had the cashier open a new register and he opened one as well. The woman in front of me with the full cart went to the manager’s register and I remained behind the lady with the check; who became very apologetic for the “trouble she caused.”
The cashier assured the woman it was a system error. Because I chose a better feeling thought I could offer a light-hearted comment, “If that’s the worst trouble you cause today, you’re doing okay.” She smiled and thanked me as she seemed to have a sense of relief pour over her.
As the cashier processed my order she commented, “You may have just missed an accident.”
It was then I recognized that I started to get caught up in the evidence of an event instead of looking past the obvious to the gift. How often do we miss the gifts of life because we look at life through a pinhole? How much better is the view when we back up and remove ourselves from the center of it all?
At minimum my gifts included a smile for myself and others, compassion to another, serenity (both during and after the event) and a pleasant interaction from the cashier when it was my turn. For some these may seem trite, but I believe these are the essential, undervalued building blocks of creating a desired life. How often have you allowed one situation to steal your serenity and then dictate your next situation?
What would you have thought, said, or done? The next time life inserts a “snag” to slow you down, take a deep breath and ask yourself, “What’s the gift in this?