Knowledge absorbed by the mind is fickle. Sometimes it stays,
sometimes it fades. Knowledge that descends from the mind, down into
the heart, remains forever. It takes root and changes lives.
Heart knowledge doesn't have to be earth shattering to be profound.
A simple change in perception - seeing something through the eyes of
the heart instead of the eyes of the mind - can alter the way you
look at yourself, look at others or look at the world in general.
The grandest and the simplest of my life's lessons have come from
My heart taught me that a cemetery is only a scary place until
someone you love is laid to rest. It then becomes a place of quiet
tasks - grass clippings brushed from a headstone, flowers arranged
and rearranged. It becomes a place where you leave the world at the
gates and devote time to tender memories.
My heart taught me that the lifeblood of my country isn't the rights
and freedoms I enjoy. It is the heart I see in the weeping eyes of
our Veterans on Remembrance Day. It is the cost exacted from their
souls for love of the land I am privileged to call home.
My heart taught me that every generation has its heroes. They aren't
found on the television or movie screen, on the radio or in major
sports. Heroes are busy, away from the limelight, doing what heroes
do best - putting others before themselves. From the major cities
and quiet hamlets in the industrialized world, to the most desolate
and destitute places on earth, there are heroes to be found. All we
have to do - to find them - is stop looking in the wrong places.
My heart taught me that loneliness has nothing to do with being by
myself and everything to do with filling a God-shaped hole in the
center of my being. Some of my loneliest experiences have been in
the presence of other people.
My heart taught me that puppy kisses and hugs from small children
can heal a whole lot of hurt.
My heart taught me that I catch on 'real quick' and suddenly 'get
it', when a lesson I've refused to learn is repeated in the lives of
My heart taught me to stop hatred, fear, disrespect and prejudice at
the front door of my home. I can't stop all the ugliness in the
world, but I can create a safe haven for the hearts and souls of my
family, by refusing the ugliness entrance into my home.
My heart taught me that trying to change people is best left in
God's hands. They will fall into every pothole they refuse to go
around and hit every wall they willingly run toward, regardless of
have much I want to save them from suffering through the
consequences of their actions. I can help pick up their broken
pieces in the aftermath, but God can use their self inflicted
pain to help them make better choices in the future.
My heart taught me that my own personal happiness is my own personal
responsibility. Putting that responsibility on someone else's
shoulders - is unfair. The burden is heavy. It's also unrealistic.
No one was put on earth for the sole purpose of making me happy.
My heart taught me that compassion isn't a gift I can give to
someone's heart. It is a gift of spirit I can only grow in my own
heart. I can plant seeds, but I can't make someone care about the
hungry, the lonely or the oppressed people in the world around them.
My efforts only make them pretend to care - when I'm around them.
My heart taught me that walking out the church door is the holiest
moment of a Sunday morning service. Either I take the message with
me and make it part of my life, or I leave it in the sanctuary,
tucked away till the following Sunday morning.
My heart taught me that time worn advice doesn't always wear out.
The old adage to remember the sun when it's raining and remember the
rain when the sun is shining, contains more wisdom than many modern
day theories and philosophies.
My heart taught me that missing someone is a very real ache. It
comes from a place where another heart has touched my own and left a
My heart taught me that birth really is a miracle. A new baby, fresh
from heaven, is a new chance, for a new heart, to bring new light -
into this old world.
Hidden heartbeats hold threads of wisdom that forever lie inside of
me - and forever lie inside of you.
Living in love and loving life,
© 2003 Terri McPherson