S2Episode36 Looking Up Can Change Everything

April 1, 2024

Good morning from New York City. I come to you this morning with a full heart. I think the expression goes my cup runneth over. Easter was really beautiful. I ventured back to the Marble Collegiate Church on Fifth Ave. Now, I’m not a church goer. I’m basically one of those people who goes on Easter and Christmas. I went last year with my friend Sarah Forden who was in town and this year I pushed myself to go alone. Going to church alone felt kind of funny, but I wanted to push myself because I’ve come back to New York after these six months on the road and I want to maintain the momentum behind trying new things and pushing myself outside of my comfort zone. So when I woke up, I said, come on, Constance let’s go and get yourself to church. It’s a beautiful day to go. And indeed, it was.

There are a couple of things I like about this church in particular. One is that it is very representative of New York City. There are people from all over the world and you really see that when you walk through the door. But what I love most is when you walk into a church that has an active congregation, you can really feel this palpable sense of community. The DNA of this particular church actually comes from the origins, I think. It was the church of Norman Vincent Peale who wrote the book ‘The Power of Positive Thinking’ and there’s this positive energy in the church. You feel instantly happy that you made the effort to go. Of course it was Easter, so there were beautiful flowers, an orchestra, a choir, and the organ was ringing out. It was glorious.

Anyway, I’ve been noodling many of the things that came through the minister’s sermon that I want to take into the week, and I thought I’d share a couple of them. Of course, it was Easter so the theme throughout was the resurrection. While I don’t want to talk about the biblical or religious references, I love the symbolic meaning of resurrection. Resurrection is about revival and rebirth and renewal of our spirit. It’s about fresh energy and fresh eyes, and the stories and invitations throughout the sermon were very much about that. It was really beautiful.

Two of the themes that came through the sermon as it relates to renewing our spirit and bringing fresh energy into our lives were about sight, and silence. As it relates to silence, I was very struck by the minister’s first words. He said, silence is our first language. He talked about how ripe those silent spaces can be and the importance of quieting ourselves enough to listen. You know, here on the podcast I  refer to my morning time as my quiet practice and it’s because I really love quiet Those words really resonated with me yesterday and I was thinking about how much I savor this opportunity that I have right now to quiet myself again in my own home to listen for the cues and clues silence is ripe with.

The other thing that I really loved was when he was talking about looking up. He was talking about how we tend to just put our head down and keep going and do what we need to do, and the invitation was to look up and he was talking about how we regain our sight by looking up. I love the Marcel Proust quote that he offered during the sermon which was this: the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. Isn’t that beautiful?

I thought that this idea of quieting ourselves enough to listen and remembering to look up were invitations basically to rethink what’s possible in our lives. That’s what was intended when he was talking about the resurrection, the symbolic meaning of rebirth of the spirit and renewal in our lives. It’s so easy to drift from our priorities and his was a beautiful and simple invitation to, in his words, lay claim to our hope and our dreams.

I’ll end today with these last words that I jotted down. Looking up can change everything. And as Proust said, discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.

That’s all for now. Until next time, from my heart to yours.

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dear Listeners,

Friends say I live my life out loud. That’s because I’m a curious, adventurous person and, as an appreciator, I simply love to share what lights me up. Consider this is your invitation into my fun, multi-faceted world.

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“Speaking with Constance helped me to see myself  – and my experience –with fresh perspective.  I got great clarity and completely shifted gears. She totally got it. The experience fully re-energized me.”

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