Beauty is not caused. It is.

Emily Dickinson



Underneath the pain of a stomach bug is the joy of drinking ginger chamomile tea and receiving this beautiful reminder by Emily Dickinson on the tea bag. Underneath the boredom of a zoom call is staring out the window on a glistening day, watching the drippings of an icicle splashing geometric designs on the terrace. And best is realizing that underneath the doings of my day, I am paying attention to the simple but real presence of beauty and wonder that’s right under my nose.
Yesterday I went to church and was reminded of what Lent is meant to be. The message was about slowing down, becoming humble, and simplifying. But the real message was found in the experience of a twenty minute pause, standing in the midday sun as cars roared by, listening to birds chirping in the woodland behind the church, and feeling the spirit and connection that comes when I am quiet and observant.

“Beyond the beauty of external forms, there is more here: something that cannot be named, something ineffable, some deep, inner, holy essence. Whenever and wherever there is beauty, this inner essence shines through somehow. It only reveals itself to you when you are present. “

Eckhart Tolle

The giving up tradition of Lent is not about scarcity and deprivation so much as it is about simplifying, so we can feel the abundance of beauty that already is. An icicle, a chirping bird, an inspirational tea bag. Those were little joy-filled curiosities found in my day. How about yours? Are you finding that practicing quiet helps you better see beauty? That’s the idea of Lent.

This Week's Practice:

Each day is a gift. And time spent in silence is a gift within that gift. The way to tap into the abundance of joy that rests quietly within is to simply be present with it. The time is now; do it for you! Try five minutes today.

This Week's Prayer:

more info: inquiries: info@40daysofpeace.comjournaling encouraged; personal favorite- the old ‘composition notebook’ , a good online option is

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