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Creating a State of Grace

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“I want first of all… to be at peace with myself. I want a singleness of eye, a purity of intention, a central core to my life that will enable me to carry out these obligations and activities as well as I can. I want, in fact–to borrow from the language of the saints–to live “in grace” as much of the time as possible. I am not using this term in a strictly theological sense. By grace I mean an inner harmony, essentially spiritual, which can be translated into outward harmony. I am seeking perhaps what Socrates asked for in the prayer from the Phaedrus when he said, “May the outward and inward man be one.” I would like to achieve a state of inner spiritual grace from which I could function and give as I was meant to in the eye of God.” — Anne Morrow Lindbergh

As the year comes to an end, I don't want to create resolutions as hard tasks to be met but to reach for grace: the beautiful inner grace as described by the eloquent Anne Morrow Lindbergh in Gift from the Sea. If you haven't read this short, insightful novel, I highly recommend it. Anne shares her inner most thoughts and through her musings you are drawn to inner contemplation.

A state of internal grace is something that, like all other good things, takes work. As a mother, wife, employee and most of all a woman, I put myself last after all the errands, tasks etc. are completed. The reality is that they are never completed because there's always a dinner to make or someone needs help. I'll be better at all of the above if I afford myself the same consideration that I give to all my other responsibilities.

I get things done when I put them on a list so I'm making a list, not of resolutions, but things that I can do to help nurture and renew my inner grace. We all need time to spend alone to reflect and renew our spirit and be the people that we want to be.

My wish list to create a state of grace:

    • Focus on gratitude and thankfulness.
    • Fill my happiness jar as suggested by Elizabeth Gilbert. I found the perfect antique blue Mason jar and I'm excited to fill it with colored bits of paper with happy, hopeful thoughts from my day.  What will fill your happiness jar this year?
    • Find the time I need to refill my inner creative fountain and make the time to express what I find.
    • Read more books to educate and inspire me.
    • Hit more yoga classes.
    • Write more book reviews of the books I read to help the authors whom I enjoyed.
    • Celebrate my family and friends.
    • Put a love lock somewhere this year on a trip with my husband.
    • Make more things from my fantastic Pinterest boards. It's such a great feeling to create something.

I also hope to find more time to write in the new year which will only happen if I make the time. Thank you to you, my wonderful reader, for all your support of me and my writing. It means to world to me! I have so much to be thankful for my family, friends, colleagues and all the wonderful things that happened in 2012.
I wish you a lovely new year ahead and hope that you too will able to create a state of grace and peace. Do you have anything that you will be striving to achieve in the upcoming year?

“One writes not to be read but to breathe…one writes to think, to pray, to analyze. One writes to clear one's mind, to dissipate one's fears, to face one's doubts, to look at one's mistakes–in order to retrieve them. One writes to capture and crystallize one's joy, but also to disperse one's gloom. Like prayer–you go to it in sorrow more than joy, for help, a road back to ‘grace'.” — Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Gift from the Sea on GoodReads

Featured image courtesy of javajoba via Creative Commons.

Article by Peg Fitzpatrick

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10 Comments

  1. Perfectly said Peggy!  Finding balance in our crazy lives and achieving true inner peace is the greatest gift we can give ourselves.
     
    The end of the year always seems like a perfect time to reflect inward on what stopped us and what moved us forward during the year. However, much is to gain when we take the time to do that all year long. You are a living testament to this and I’m so incredibly honored to have met you this year and now call you friend. Merry Christmas to you and your family and cheers to a hugely successful New Year!

    1. @Rebekah Radice Have you read Gift from the Sea? You’d really get a lot from it!
       
      It’s interesting that at year end, birthdays or other milestone dates can lead us inward. It’s really good to stop every once in awhile and reassess especially when we are so busy with everything else in life. 
       
      Thank you for your kind thoughts, Rebekah! It’s been such a pleasure for me to get to know you and have you as a friend. I look forward to a fantastic new year ahead checking out all the latest updates and tools with you!

  2. Beautiful sentiments, Peggy. We are both list makers, but as we know all too well, the constant ticking off of list items can become a hamster wheel of endless to-do’s. This can wear thin over time and if we aren’t careful, it can get in the way of our true purpose and what brings us real happiness. This is a great time for self-reflection and I like your idea of skipping the usual resolutions, and instead take a more holistic approach. Sometimes it is good to just stop and appreciate the little things that are usually right in front of us but too often overlooked, in order to attain the bigger things that are important to us. Thanks for clarifying these reminders and thank you for a spectacular 2012. There is always something more to learn and wisdom is not attained over night. I wish you a happy and healthy 2013!

  3. Beautiful sentiments, Peggy. We are both list makers, but as we know all too well, the constant ticking off of list items can become a hamster wheel of endless to-do’s. This can wear thin over time and if we aren’t careful, it can get in the way of our true purpose and what brings us real happiness.
     
    This is a great time for self-reflection and I like your idea of skipping the usual resolutions, and instead take a more holistic approach. Sometimes it is good to just stop and appreciate the little things that are usually right in front of us but too often overlooked, in order to attain the bigger things that are important to us. 
     
    Thanks for clarifying these reminders and thank you for a spectacular 2012. There is always something more to learn and wisdom is not attained over night. I wish you a very happy and healthy 2013!

    1. @PaulBiedermann 
      Taking time to reflect and plan ahead is important but as you mentioned, the to-do lists can get repetitive and can steal away the creative mojo. Time to refill and refuel for the new year!
       
      Thanks for your thoughts! High five for a great 2012 and an even better 2013!

  4. Lovely thoughts Peg! I need to work a little harder on this as sometimes I forget to give myself some grace. I tend to just put my head down and run. If I look up and haven’t met my goal, I tent to be my own greatest critic. 
     
    Thanks for your thoughts here Peg!

    1. @dustinstout I think we’re all our own worst critics. Some pressure to do our best is good but we also need to stop and celebrate successes as they come. At the end of the day, doing our best is really the best we can do. 
       
      Thanks for reading and commenting, Dustin!

  5. beautiful post @PegFitzpatrick I wish you no only grace for 2013 but that wonderful feeling you get when you complete your list – my kind of girl 🙂 Much love dear friend !!

    1. @JodiOkun I always strive to complete that list, Jodi!
       
      I wish you lots of growth and joy in 2013 as well. Thank you for being a good friend all throughout 2012! XOXO

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