Speaking Words to Comfort Your Heart and Mind

Hi y’all, how are you holding up on Day 10 of the coronavirus craze, in this world full of unknowns?

While there are so many things we can’t control, here are some we can — our attitude and how we react to circumstances. I remember these wise words from author and pastor Charles R. Swindoll: “Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our Attitudes.”

My whole life, I’ve been an avid reader, which has helped me through countless situations. Books were a passport to my imagination. I would find peace, comfort and safety with each page I flipped, as I read aloud to my audience of stuffed animals who enjoyed every story I told. Shhh, that’s the truth, they told me!

During these somewhat troubling times, I find so much joy seeing some of my favorite authors read their books aloud to virtual audiences. It was heartwarming to watch people I look up to like Lisa Ling reading with her daughter on Instagram today.

I was inspired to share with you two readings, one from a book appropriately titled “How to Live with Life.”

And a poem titled “Lockdown” by Friar Richard Hendrick.

Both have inspired calm during these times of manic panic. I hope you enjoy my virtual video reading, sprinkled with commentary between the pages 🙂

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I invite you to read the poem for yourself. I hope you find comfort and calm while reading. Please share with your loved ones.

Lockdown

Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.

But,
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.

They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.

They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.

They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.

Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighbourhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.

Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary

All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way
All over the world people are waking up to a new reality

To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
To Love.

So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.

Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.

Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
Sing.

I invite you to unlock your inner child during this crazy time — create something that calms your mind and heart, and share it with others.

<3
Toan

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