Chosen...just because
Opportunities in Difficulties

One Step at a Time

I will get my own post up later on today, but I wanted to share something that I received in an email last week.   So many times we get overwhelmed with the magnitude of the problem before us that we fail to see the reality that things can change.  Unfortunately, change takes time.  It takes time in our own hearts and it takes time for others to recognize that we have in fact changed for the better as well.  I'm speaking of a specific situation here relating to a couple with marital issues, but the principle still remains.  Big dreams take shape one step at a time.  Reconciliation between two hurt parties takes place one step at a time.  Please take time to read the following story, The Daffodil Principle.  I think my favorite quote from the story is this:

"When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things.  We can change the world."

We can change the world, and we can change our worlds, especially if we involve God in the process.  May you be strengthened with these words today.


THE DAFFODIL PRINCIPLE

Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come
see the daffodils before they are over." I wanted to go, but it was a
two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead.

"I will come next Tuesday," I promised, a little reluctantly, on her
third call.

Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and so I
drove there. When I finally walked into Carolyn's house and hugged and
greeted my grandchildren, I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The
road is invisible in the clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the
world except you and these children that I want to see bad enough to
drive another inch!"

My daughter smiled calmly and said, "We drive in this all the time,
Mother."

"Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears, and then I'm
heading for home!" I assured her.

"I was hoping you'd take me over to the garage to pick up my car."

"How far will we have to drive?"

"Just a few blocks," Carolyn said. "I'll drive. I'm used to this."

After several minutes, I had to ask, "Where are we going? This isn't the
way to the garage!"

"We're going to my garage the long way," Carolyn smiled, "by way of the
daffodils."

"Carolyn," I said sternly, "please turn around."

"It's all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if
you miss this experience."

After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw
a small church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand-lettered
sign that read, "Daffodil Garden." We got out of the car and each took a
child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. Then, we turned a
corner of the path, and I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most
glorious sight. It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of
gold and poured it down over the mountain peak and slopes. The flowers
were planted in majestic, swirling patterns-great ribbons and swaths of
deep orange, white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butter
yellow. Each different-colored variety was planted as a group so that
it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There
were five acres of flowers.

"But who has done this?" I asked Carolyn.

"It's just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property.
That's her home." Carolyn pointed to a well kept A frame house that
looked small and modest in the midst of all that glory. We walked up to
the house. On the patio, we saw a poster. "Answers to the Questions I
Know You Are Asking" was the headline.

The first answer was a simple one. "50,000 bulbs," it read. The second
answer was, "One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and very
little brain." The third answer was, "Began in 1958." There it was, The
Daffodil Principle. For me, that moment was a life-changing experience.

I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years
before, had begun-one bulb at a time-to bring her vision of beauty and
joy to an obscure mountain top. Still, just planting one bulb at a
time, year after year, had changed the world. This unknown woman had
forever changed the world in which she lived. She had created something
of ineffable (indescribable) magnificence, beauty, and inspiration. The
principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles
of celebration.

That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a
time-often just one baby-step at a time-and learning to love the doing,
learning to use the accumulation of time. When we multiply tiny pieces
of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can
accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world.

"It makes me sad in a way," I admitted to Carolyn. "What might I have
accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty
years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all
those years. Just think what I might have been able to achieve!"

My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way.
"Start tomorrow," she said. It's so pointless to think of the lost
hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson of celebration
instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, "How can I put this to use
today?"

-- Author Unknown

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