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Inspiration is a chipmunk named Bob

I’m a huge fan of inspiration! You know . . . those times when you are surprised and overcome by joy, or an aha, a vision or an insight that can just knock your socks off, remind you of what’s significant and meaningful or even bring you to tears.

I took this picture of Bob when I was in the mountains visiting my son. I was sitting on a boulder looking out on a gorgeous landscape covered by a brilliant blue sky when I noticed I had company. That day I had come needing some divine insight, a kind reminder that I’m never really alone. And there we were – the two of us enjoying the same sky and sun and blissfully peaceful space. Bob, who just seemed to fit his name, stayed close by, quietly, and let me babble about my reason for always returning to his mountains. And, finally, I was struck . . . and the peace of knowing I was not alone gathered around me in the beauty, generosity and clarity of nature's splendor.

Inspiration is revelation, an awakening to something new or forgotten, an idea or vision that begins from a place beyond you, always arriving with an invitation to connect. Elizabeth Gilbert in Big Magic gives inspiration a human quality and describes it this way: “. . . inspiration will always try its best to work with you – but if you are not ready or available, it may indeed choose to leave you and to search for a different human collaborator.”

My reality is that inspiration, like any new friend, has to be welcomed; it’s not going to stay around if I don’t try to hear what it has to tell me. As co-collaborators, we need to be on our toes, listening, watchful and welcoming to the invitational signals of an inspirational moment.

I suppose in our chaotic world, staying open to watch for an inspiration seems . . . well, frivolous. But, my friends, inspiration is anything but irrelevant. It offers connections with the mysterious, the soulful and the sacred, all available to us in the here and now.

Take a minute and reflect on what inspires you.

Is it: ~ watching the courage of one doing the right thing in an impossible situation; ~ the grace of one who forgives what might seem unforgivable to you; ~ the loving kindness shown to those you have thought unlovable; ~ a beautifully stunning sunset closing a day of fear and sorrow; ~ a piece of music that touches your soul, moving you to feel its incredible power on a new level; ~ just the right word said at the perfect time for you to hear and understand its meaning in a more significant way?

In each inspired happening, you’ve been offered connection, something has been willing to reveal itself to you. And, if you’re paying attention, you might just say yes to a sacred collaboration that will change your life.

Watch for it. Trust its power. Celebrate its presence. Be it.

May you notice grace, within and without, as you journey forward –


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