July 30, 2002
Nevis, West Indies
Greetings from Paradise
"Ten Valuable Life Lessons That I Have Learned Living in Nevis"
One of the great joys about living in Nevis is the wisdom that I have gained living among Nevisians. Nevisian for the most part are a very spiritual people, believing strongly in God as their partner; the provider of all of their blessings. They are far more accepting of life, death and the obstacles along the way. When a tragedy befalls, they grieve as any human would each in his or her own way but the analysis-paralysis that pervades American culture is non-existent here so that most of one's energy, focus and prayer can be spent on gratitude for what she or he had and finding the necessary strength, love and support to move ahead. This doesn't mean that when a mistake occurs, they don't stop and figure out why and how to improve, but they don't beat themselves over the head about "why" just accept that is the journey is their destiny.
I share with you some of the lessons that I have learned, chatting over the garden fence, going for walks with friends, listening to the outpouring of a friend's soul and just living among the Nevisian people. They don't just utter the words, but truly believe and live them. Their philosophy has given me far greater peace of mind than I have ever experienced in my life and the energy and ability to focus on a more meaningful and productive way of life. This is the Nevis that I have experienced and love so deeply:
1. If it doesn't come your way; it wasn't meant to be yours. (Life is that simple!)
2. The Great Master never gives us a burden greater than we can carry.
3. "I prayed very hard and God answered my prayers." (It seems as though they have speed-dialing to heaven here.)
4. Every good thing that happens is because it is a blessing from God; there is no such thing as good luck. (See Psalms 16:2) When things go wrong, they don't blame God, but realize in the tragedy or mishap, there is a lesson to be learned.
5. When they realize that they no longer have any control of a situation, they put their total trust in God or Jesus.
6. If you don't like what you see, hear or feel, keep it to yourself and don't return. (One of my favorites.)
7. Those who seem to have the least in material possessions have the greatest peace of mind.
8. Nevisians rarely complain and never explain. If they can't, they don't and it is all accepted in good faith that each person has a legitimate and plausible explanation.
9. I need far less than I ever thought I needed. When I am fearful, I immediately ask God to help.
10. Pay attention to my "source-voice" (one's inner voice--the connection to one's soul and God) and take better care of my spiritual and emotional needs. These are my responsibility. Seize the moment and live life to the fullest, even if it is as simple as watching the sunset or taking a picture. Five seconds later, it may be gone or different.
Up and Down and Across the Sky; Blessings All Around.
Double Rainbow Sending Blessings.