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Choices: One Reaction at a Time

A reporter recently declared: “We should buckle up because it looks like we’re in for a rough patch.” Seriously? Do we need reminding about an action that feels almost like second nature? How about looking forward to something different . . . something more freeing, rather than so confining.

I often quietly sit in a spot where I can look out to watch small birds circle and call as they land on my birdfeeder, sharing space and having a meal. I love that view. It makes me smile. I feed them; they return – a simple action bringing a consistent reaction.

This picture brings to mind one of my favorite truths, resting in a Chinese proverb:

“You can’t prevent birds of sorrow flying over your head –

But you can prevent them from building nests in your hair.”

These words, short and to the point, serve as a reminder: we have choices. Our own, unique, metaphorical sorrowing birds circle often, and most times we have no control over their motives or the fallout of their despairing actions. Buckling up? Maybe. But there’s beauty in knowing that we have the power to choose a different reaction.

Try shaking out your hair; comb out some old nests. Consider what it would take to truly accept whatever is out of your control. After all, most circling sorrows fly well beyond our reach.

Instead, how about choosing a lifestyle viewed through the lens of what you can control . . . whatever brings you peace, makes you smile, wraps you in love. Feed that view. Let it land and nest in you, to return and be chosen again and again.

From my hopeful heart to yours—

Always sending grace,




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