© 2016 Created byJane Nicolet

Encountering Grace

March 27, 2020

We’re inhabiting a time when our equilibrium, life as we understand it, has moved onto shifting sand. In fact, with the proportion of turmoil out there, it’s feeling a bit biblical . . . plague, pestilence and scourge in the form of a new virus and its profound fallout: fear of the unknown, a frantic search for safety, trust and balance, and a most prodigious display of human-made and bravely-endured chaos. We are craving answers and solutions to problems we’ve yet to even fully understand.

Thanks to the world’s intelligent scientists, selfless, hard-working medical profes...

March 6, 2020

I just looked at her while she shared her best hopes. 

I encountered a grace moment not long ago. A former student and I found each other by surprise in a coffee shop where I was writing my latest blog. We briefly reconnected first about life in general, and then moved on to writing and reading, pastimes we both shared. She talked more about her busy lifestyle, stressing, as a reader, the importance of rich content within few words. She wanted short, memorable and shareable text. 

“We’re so busy,” she stated about her generation; “reading lots of text is really hard to comm...

February 20, 2020

I am ridiculously in love with poetry;  I even write it when I meet a metaphor that won’t let me go . . . and I’ve had enough wine. I was reminded of that part of me (the poetry-loving part) one morning last week. A woman hosting a morning TV show shared that while attending a large, day-long event, she heard a poem that made her cry. Her tears were unexpected and heartfelt; she talked about her experience in ways that made me think that both reading, and crying over poetry are unusual happenings for her. But not for me.

Poetry is such a beautifully dense medium – so...

January 10, 2020

Emily Dickinson wrote:

Hope is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul

And sings the tune without the words

And never stops at all.

One of my happiest truths about moving into anything new is that I’ll have the chance to walk into empty spaces and make new choices. Such chances absolutely fill me with hopeful delight. Sure, I’ll be wandering into the unfamiliar, carrying all kinds of baggage . . . but the good news is I’ll be moving into uncluttered spaces. I can choose what to leave behind because it just won’t fit, and how to reconfigure all the stuff I decide to ke...

December 20, 2019

The tree pictured first showed up for me as an anonymous image meant to represent this holiday season. For years I’ve wanted to replace, as well as add some words and phrases to its branches – to fashion a tree meant to embrace all seasons and all people. I finally took the time to finish that work so that it depicts not only a season or holiday, but every-day living to me. Every separate idea is meant as a message for how to think and feel and behave . . . each and every day. 

I hope you’ll slow down enough to read them as if they were light points on the tree. Perhaps th...

December 6, 2019

. . . and there I was, doing it again and muttering to myself, “Well, that was a stupid thing to do.  I can’t believe I did it again.  I am an idiot!” 

It took a while before I began to finally realize I was once more inadvertently creating the beginnings of an unintentional mantra – a repetition of what I like least about myself.

I’ve come to believe that “I am” might just be the most important phrase we ever use, because the thoughts we place after those words have the power to shape our personal reality. 

Unintended, negative, mantra-like statemen...

November 23, 2019

It was almost 2,000 years ago that this famous phrase was coined: “Home is where the heart is.” I believe this often-recalled thought expresses a concept as important to our lives today as it might have been then – the idea that a physical place and part of the body exist together. In fact, let me walk a few more steps into the core of that idea and state it as a metaphor: our truest home is our own heart.

The holidays mark special seasons in our lives; we can find ourselves making our way to homes, again and again. That kind of traveling can be both lovely and stres...

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