How To Get More Done? Adventure.

I’m preparing for an adventure. I fly…

And right now that means packing boxes and packing carry-on luggage.

My packing work reminds me of another journey. It was a much bigger journey! I packed my stuff in boxes for a four month world tour. Part of that tour was a pilgrimage of three weeks. 21 days of flying! I went flying to what felt a different world at each destination.

I flew to oceans and beaches and stayed in 5-star hotels. I sailed the Indian Ocean on a tiny sailboat and on a tinier windsurfing board. I climbed through thousands of years of history to enter caves at Ajanta and Ellora in India.

I flew to visit thousands of places of worship! Some were Buddhist, others Christian, Hindu, Jain, Muslim, and Sikh. Some were living places of worship full of people practicing their faith. Others were in caves or surrounded by forests, from former civilizations where nature grew up around abandoned places people had lived long ago.

Before the daily flying began, I was in Calcutta. The Bolshoi Ballet had set up a performance as a show of support for major events in Calcutta. It was during the cold war, and détente was a word that was being practiced by sending top cultural events to share and show off the expertise of nations.

Did you know that Mikhail Baryshnikov danced with the Bolshoi Ballet in 1987? He did. Did you know the performance was in Calcutta? It was. Guess who was there? Mother Teresa. Me. Neither one of us saw the performance.

So I went to the Bolshoi Ballet in Calcutta. Who do I meet there but Mother Teresa? And more than meet and greet, we spend the entire ballet gazing into each other’s eyes. Powerful presence of God! Gazing into each other’s eyes we both miss entire ballet. Then I return to Calcutta and travel about some more. Packing once again… led me to prepare to fly to Rome.

So I went to the Calcutta airport. Who do I meet there but Mother Teresa? And more than meet and greet, once again we spend an entire time of gazing into each other’s eyes. It was my turn to check-in when Mother Teresa arrived with a priest who’d given her community a retreat. He was flying back to Rome and skipped over the long line I’d just waited through, to take my check-in spot. The airline folks apparently went through some long fiasco in getting him settled. Like the ballet, I missed that part. Here I am packing once again… preparing to fly.

Remembering those moments with Mother Teresa brings up a prayerful feeling. Life is about right now, isn’t it? We breathe one breath at a time. When we’re with someone, we’re sharing by breathing in the same air. When we pray together, we draw nearer to God together.

When we’re compassionate we let the light of God’s love shine through. God is visible shining through our eyes into others even when we don’t realize. Even when we are in so much pain we cannot imagine our presence helps others.

For kindness inspires kindness. For example, the first time I met Mother Teresa, just before the ballet began? I looked up to find some little old lady followed by bigger lady struggling to get out. I stood up. Feeling I could help make it easier to pass by me at at least.

But the ballet started. That little old lady looked up at me from a distance. She struggled a bit more. As she drew closer to my seat, I recognized her. She reached me. We stood there together in that one spot.

She was Mother Teresa of Calcutta. She simply stayed standing next to me, gazing up into my eyes. Short of stature, she looked up at me – literally I mean!

Here’s a prayer inspired today by remembering Mother Teresa

Faith is a gift we share

God is light. In Him there is no darkness at all.

 

Help! The prayer I was screaming inside…

It’s still my most frequent prayer.

 

I’m inspiring kindness when I am kind

Joy! Is the light of God’s love in kindness

Kindness delivers miracles

Love shines.

 

Look up to someone. See how they look up to you.

Miracles are real

Noise or silence? You can be in noise and still be in silence. Even amid music and feet thomping on wooden floors.

One moment matters.

Prayerful presence of you O Lord

My God My Savior… thank you for loving me

 

Quiet yourself inside for memorable moments.

Recognition. Pain recognizes pain. Compassion is shared.

Smiles connect human beings.

 

Time? Time stands still. Time speeds by. Simultaneously! Pay attention to transformation.

Up! Remembering Mother Teresa looks up… Looks up at me.

Look up at people. Looking for good.

 

Visible?

Focus on the Lord.

Discernment follows.

 

Words are superfluous

In the presence of compassion.

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