August 23, 2021


Rangeley Lake Sunset 10/06/2002 Oil Paint Rendered — Rangeley, Maine
When the destabilizing forces
roll through your world,
how do you re-stabilize?

What do you do to restore
balance and harmony?

I wait to find the next thing
that needs to be done
and do it.

And then find the next thing
that needs to be done
and do it.

And on and on like that.

Doing the next thing
carries us past the last thing.
And when we are overwhelmed,
we can get our feet back under us
just doing the next thing that needs doing,
and the thing after that,
and letting our thinking be focused
on what we are doing,
and not on what's going to happen,
and what are we going to do...

The focus is just on what we are doing,
right here, right now.
And on what is the next thing.
This thing and the next thing
are all we need to worry about
right here, right now.

Restore our balance.
Regain our harmony.
Seek the consolation
of the inner guide,
the ministrations of soul/psyche,
the comfort of the communion
of our ancestors mediated
through the Collective Unconscious 
of our DNA.
Knowing we are not alone,
but carry the genetic makeup
of people who were slammed and stunned 
and found what they needed to carry on.

We belong to a great company
of those who were destabilized and undone
and figured out how to do it
and come through it.

Open to their presence and guidance,
wisdom and insight
flowing into and merging with our own
and finding that to be a source
of courage and strength
in the darkness waiting for the light.
In the silence listening for the sound
of goodness and life
coming to life again.
Even here.
Even now.
Even yet.
Even so.



Black Bayou 06 11/02/2015 — Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Monroe, Louisiana
Every scene is better
at one time than another.
The photographer's work
is waiting on the right time
and knowing it when they see it.

Not every time is the right time
to take a photograph.

Snapshooters don't know this,
and treat all times alike.

This is the only difference
between anybody with a camera
and a photographer with a camera.

Taking pictures out of the picture,
all times are the right time for something.

It is our place as Servants of The Way
to know what this time,
this moment,
this here and now,
is the right time for--
to know what needs to be done
here and now,
and to do it exactly when it needs to be done,
the way it needs to be done,
because it needs to be done,
and do it no matter what,
time after time,
place after place,
in each situation as it arises,
all our life long.

The right word,
the right act,
in the right place
and the right time
is a miracle of time and place.

As Servants of The Way,
we are Masters of the Miracle
of time and place.

What is it time for right here,
right now?

Do it!
Straight from the heart!
With complete sincerity and spontaneity!
And do not worry about the outcome!
Trust yourself to the moment!
And press the shutter button!

In this way,
you will be making miracles happen
all of the time.



Cypress Swamp 03/27/2015 Oil Paint Rendered — Lake Martin, Beaux Bridge, Louisiana
If I were to do my life over
I would do it differently.

I would start with my parents
and my point of origin.

But, here I am.

Here we all are.
This is it.
This is what we have to work with.
Just as it is.
Just as we are.

Now what?

How we answer that question
makes all the difference,
day in and day out
for the rest of the time left for living.

Given the givens,
what can we imagine doing with them
right here, right now?

How we live right here, right now,
or at least,
strongly influences,
what happens next.
And that changes everything,

This moment, 
right here, right now,
is the fulcrum,
the pivot point,
levering our future into position.

Do. Not. Do. It. Like. You. Have. 
Always. Done. It.

You can transform what remains of your life
right here, right now.

Our parents and our point of origin
are our parents and our point of origin.
What we do with that,
and with all that lies between 
then and now,
is our call to make
from this moment going forward.

We are not bound to live here and now
like we have lived in all the moments
preceding this moment.
Here, now, is where we act
to transform our possibilities
and our likelihoods.

Here, now, is where we act
to reclaim our potential
and recast our chances
and our prospects.

What is this moment asking of us?
What future are we being called to,
right here and right now?

How we live here and now,
puts that future into motion,
and makes it more likely
than it was just a moment ago.

When you sit quietly,
in the silent stillness,
what can you feel/sense
stirring within,
hoping you will give it a chance
to show you what you can become
even now, even yet,
never mind where you came from,
or who your parents were?

Follow the drift of that movement!
Give your soul the opportunity
to twinkle and dance!

We all know what our past is?
Why allow the future to just be more of that?
Why not live to find out what the future
may yet be?

Live out of your own authority
toward what is struggling/hoping
to be born in you,
through you,
even now,
even yet, 
even so! 



Dry Falls 04 10/21/2014 Oil Paint Rendered — Nantahala National Forest, Highlands, North Carolina
How we meet the moment
determines everything that follows.

The way to proceed 
moment by moment
is to be right about what needs 
to happen there,
and serve that with our life.

Our liege loyalty
and filial devotion
has to be to what needs to happen
in each moment
of each situation as it arises.

To step aside from the needs of the moment
is to shirk our duty to the needs of life,
and open the way to chaos and disaster.
We had that tandem off
by rising to every occasion
and doing what needs to be done,
when it needs to be done,
the way it needs to be done,
because it needs to be done
in every situation as it arises
throughout our life.

To forsake the needs of the situation
in serving our own interests,
is to abandon our calling
and live lost to our wants and desires.
And, whoops, uh-oh, here we are.

We find our way back to the path
we were born to live
by the simple formula
of being right about what needs to be done
in each moment,
and serve it with our life.

And because it takes a certain knack
to know what is right,
we start with what seems/feels 
to be right 
and do that,
and read the outcome
to adjust our response
to the situation that arises.

And if it becomes apparent
that wasn't what needed to be done,
we reconsider the situation,
and do what seems/feels to be right,
and read the outcome
to adjust our response
to the situation that arises.

And, so on, until we are right
about what needs to happen
in the situation that has arisen--
and live to be right
about what needs to happen
in each situation that follows.

This is called,
"Living the adventure of our life." 

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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