Life is a lot about letting things go. Sometimes it is people I cling to, sometimes things, sometimes ideas and what I believe to be knowledge. I've noticed that the tighter I hold onto something, the harder it is to give up. I sometimes hate to think of that old cliche that says "If you love something let it go, if it comes back it was yours, if not, it was never yours to begin with." I hate to think of it because it is right, yet it is so contrary to my human tendency.
Mexico was a place that brought that concept home to my heart a bit more firmly than in the past. My mind has been dancing tenatively around the whole concept, but I think it finally came to rest on the beach in Las Glorias.
Being in Mexico was a lesson in giving things up because most of what I am used to having just wasn't available there. (I did bring my own Mountain Dew, so at least I had that, LOL) I went to the beach but there were no conveniences there. No beachside soda stands, or snack bars. No lounge chairs or bathrooms. There was just water, sand, seashells, wind, me and my God. And I have to say that I have never felt what I felt that day! I walked up and down the beach, combing for seashells and sand dollars and worshipping God through song, prayer and a general appreciation for the beauty surrounding me. God talked back.
It was the coolest thing when I found two sand dollars, one right after another. One was nearly perfect, the other, a little marred but still quite wonderful. I trundled along, enjoying them and thanking God. After a bit, I had asked God if he'd help me find some more. His answer, "Give up the ones you have and I will give you more." I've learned that God is faithful in those kinds of things.
So, when a family of 5 from Quebec passed by with three small children, I knew I should share my treasures with them. I checked with my Father and He confirmed. Over to the small group I went, offering what I had. It turned out that one of their three children had found a sand-dollar but the other two had been searching in vain. I shared, they went off happily and guess what I found almost immediately. Two and half more sand dolllars made their way into my bucket. But I must admit, after sharing my treasures with those children, it didn't matter so much what I found to keep. I had shared something beautiful as well the love of God. What more could I want?
It is the small lessons like this one that I just love. The way God is so tender to show me His blessings. The way He does it gently, and yet still firmly. He is insistent that I follow His lead, but it is in a beckoning way rather than a showy or demanding way. When I'm sensative to Him, he has no need to bully me and so I learn in grace and beauty.
The one impression I came away from Mexico most strongly with was that I need to let go of things. I need to be willing to wait to see what God wants me to have and let the rest slip between my fingers like so many grains of sand. When I'm holding on to them, I see that I will miss the simple beauty, the things that are calming and energizing. I'll spend all my time trying to maintain a hold on what never was mine in the first place. The question I keep asking is this, "What is there in my life that I am unwilling to live without?" That is the thing I must most emphatically hand over to God.