Heaven Is A State Of Mind

We just returned from a seven day trip to Arkansas. The purpose of the trip was to see fall color that is nonexistent where we live. The Ozark Mountains are closer that any other location where the changing of the leaves and the cool, crisp weather are almost guaranteed in October. There was also a secondary purpose. Ever since my brother’s wedding in Arkansas, we have toyed with the idea of living there. Lakes for fishing, trails for hiking, a slow pace of life in a state where the entire population is smaller than the metro area where we currently live.

As often happens when one sets their sights on something of this magnitude, disappointment is often just around the corner. Most of the southern United States suffered from a drought this past summer; this lack of water had a negative impact on the trees, thus fall color was not as expected. Beautiful, but not quite a match for my vivid imagination.

I tend to fall in love with virtually every new place I visit and then imagine what a life there could look like. Inevitably this leads to dissatisfaction with where I do live and that path is never a happy one. We decided to go back to Arkansas just to see if the reality matched the memory. Some of it did, other parts did not.

I have learned that upon a second, or third, visit to my fantasy home, without my rose colored glasses, I am able to see clearly what these new locations all have in common. None of them are perfect. None of them offer anything different than what I have here, except the landscapes are all pretty. And, in fact, this time that small still voice came to me in the middle of the night to remind me what I would be leaving behind if we were to move.

I always snap out of the funk. I resign myself to life in the hot, humid and rather unattractive place I have lived for forty three years. I choose a life where my family is close at hand. I choose a life where I have made memories which sustain and delight me. I choose to trust the voice that comes to me when I am at rest and receptive. That voice never leads me astray.

Image from @writtentospeak on Instagram.

This morning when I read this quote, I knew God was comforting me in my human disappointment. Arkansas will always be a place we go for the soul nourishment of natural beauty. Once refreshed, we will come home to continue with the life we have been given.

Peace & Love,

Sheryl

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