it’s already here. open your hands.

I spent years adrift with no concept of a greater reality beyond the terrifying things I’d learned in the church I left behind at 13. Somewhere in my twenties and early thirties, it was suggested I could choose my own conception of a power greater than myself and I tried on a little Buddhism, dabbled a bit with the Hindus, hung out with some Baha’is and a lot more. While they were improvements on what had come before, nothing touched my heart. Nothing felt real. But that had been my childhood problem too.

One morning in 1990, I stepped outside to check on some seeds I’d planted. I’d just moved from my downtown apartment to midtown Tulsa in order to feed an out-of-the-blue obsession with growing things. As a spanking new gardener, I had visions of a small urban farm started from scratch. I dreamed of a little goat, a few chickens, and a lot of flowers and vegetables. At this point, though, it was all new to me.

When I raised the covering over the tiny pots, there was a haze of palest green. Looking closer, I could see the seeds ~ those dried up, seemingly dead husks I’d put in the soil just a few days before ~ and they’d been transformed. There were tiny thread-like stems and big sturdy ones. Some were straight and some still curling from the tight enclosure of their casings, the remains of which they wore like crusty little caps.

A spiritual awakening can happen in a flash and arise out of the most mundane events. What struck me at that moment was the power of life itself. As Suzanne Giesemann calls it, Love In Full Expression. What else could turn the death of dormancy into the shimmering green of new growth? What’s powerful enough to fuel such a metamorphosis?

I was walloped by waves of bone-deep shivers. Something in seeing the aliveness bursting from those seeds gave me exactly what I’d been missing.

There was my power, unfolding right in front of me. Whatever it is that fuels the miracle I’d just witnessed, that was my god, the thing I’d been hunting from my earliest days at First Lutheran. Science could explain the mechanics of what happened with the seeds, the processes, but not the originating power or where it comes from.

That power. It just IS. And it’s in all of us. It’s the best kind of sacred magic and it is awesome when we really see it.

The seeds were the visual evidence and experience of something I’d felt and been changed by ten years before. In 1980, I’d been at a retreat in Oklahoma City. In the campus chapel on a break, I was praying the way I’d been told, asking for help with the misery of my life at that time. But I’d been praying the same way for months and nothing was happening. Nothing changed. It felt as dead and pointless as it had in the sanctuary on Sunday mornings. Just words, going nowhere, unheard, and meaning not one thing.

And then it was as if the roof was lifted off the chapel and there was a soft sort of whooshing, a feeling of expansion, and I instantly knew I wasn’t alone. I felt the expansion around me but also IN me. I heard a voice (outside? inside? it doesn’t matter) and it said “Open your hands. Accept what is already yours.”

Wait. What? Already mine? I was ten years out from my church failures, but still deeply imbued with the sense of worthlessness I’d acquired there. Why would the sudden awareness of something beyond myself show up with a gift like that? How could the thing I was desperately seeking already be mine?

Years of thinking I was broken beyond hope left me thinking I was missing something everyone else seemed to have. Certainly it felt that way in church as I peeked at the others, so devout in their prayers. In truth, the only thing missing was my understanding of who I AM. I was a dormant seed myself, just waiting for light, warmth, and water.

How could I already have it? Because we are That. We are Great Big Love. We are that L.I.F.E., that Love In Full Expression. It’s all already here. We’re made of it. Opening my hands, my heart, my mind makes me aware of how it flows in, through, and all around me ~ and everything else in existence.

But I / you / we are already That / This / The One of Us / JOY.

The thing I was looking for wasn’t lost or missing. I didn’t need to acquire it, to be good enough, smart enough, to meet some impossible standard to receive such a gift.

I needed only to excavate the false beliefs and misconceptions that were standing in the way of knowing I AM.

I’d love to say that was the end of all struggles, that self-loathing, unworthiness, and all of that mess was lifted out of me like a berry out of a basket, but it hasn’t quite worked that way. It’s much easier to see the perfection in how things are revealed when they’re long past. A lot of what I experienced then I didn’t have words for. But the experiences were real, as were the feelings and the changes.

What I now understand is that I was given a conception in that chapel of the template of who I really am, and with that, a promise. A template to map the clean-up, the excavation, and a promise (that sudden elevation of my consciousness) of where I was headed.

Most of us don’t reside in that Oneness awareness full time while still drawing breath. But I’ve been clearing and excavating for decades now, and since 2013, it’s all been in overdrive (thanks ruinous grief, with your tote bag full of profound gifts).

Now it’s possible to kind of morph back and forth at will. And in doing that, I often find delight and humor and a lot of fun in this earthly experience.

When this human thing gets a bit much, relief is at hand: a visit home, to the Truth. Because in the ultimate reality, how could I (how could any one of us) be anything less than divine beauty? And when earth life overwhelms, I need the reminder — and it’s there.

It strikes me now that these spiritual insights and awakenings, these transformative experiences come in so many ways for all of us that we could swap stories for centuries and never tell them all. For me the first big thing was a voice. The second huge thing, after ten long years, was the seeds. After that, they started coming like shooting stars, big and small, each one bringing clarity and a more refined understanding.

After the experience of the seeds, I was in hot pursuit of more. I wanted experiences that matched that sacred magic. It wasn’t long until I saw the seed experience unfold again, but in human form, as a 45 year old zombie of a man with dead eyes and terrible shakes walked into the basement of Mt. Zion Baptist Church. The first night Verlin appeared, I got him a half full cup of coffee and watched it nearly vibrate out of his quivering hand. His shame was so intense he couldn’t even look at me.

Over the next couple of months, I was graced to witness that dead man come to life, just as the seeds had. He was in the rooms every time the doors were open. I suggested 90 meetings in 90 days. He absorbed the light and warmth of that fellowship, liberally watered with coffee, and suddenly I was seeing him everywhere. One day, there was a smile. Another day, I noticed his hands had steadied.

And one night I walked into Friday night meeting to see him standing at the door with L.I.F.E. in his eyes, welcoming newcomers. He was alive. He had literally become Love In Full Expression. From the walking death of late stage alcoholism to three months of freedom, the Joy that had only been buried for a while was revealed, and it was shining out of his eyes.

Joy-as-the-All-That-Is is ever present. Joy as the life force. It’s the template. But wow, can our experience of it ever be dimmed by the human stuff. And yet we are never less than loved. We are never less than cherished, no matter the trials we face in this life, no matter our experiences or failures or perceived misdeeds.

We are loved. Always.

We ARE love. Eternally.

Open your hands. Receive the gift that is already here. It’s waiting just for you.

Now look in the mirror at the blinding light of your own shine, Love.

35 thoughts on “it’s already here. open your hands.

  1. Wow what a way to wake up this morning! A beautiful and powerful piece with so much heart. And a reminder of something we all share but sometimes have to dig a little to see. Thanks again for the way you express your knowing.


  2. So much of your story is mine too. I was confirmed in a Missouri Synod Lutheran church, Grace Lutheran in Winter Haven, FL, then spent two decades floundering around different Christian denominations before giving up.  My revelation was less dramatic, but also fueled by astounding grief. Now I am close to understanding my gifts and how to share them. Plus I’ve landed in a warm, inviting Episcopal parish, 

    They aren’t perfect, but the peace I feel there is.  With love and compassion,Dawn Anderson

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone


  3. Beautifully expressed through black and white… words that are more than just words. Thank you for sharing and starting my day in such a lovely way. Blessings…


  4. Funny how the universe responds when poked. Although we have never met, your words have touched me deeply at times most needed. You crossed my mind 2 days ago and here you are, profound as ever. Thank you and much love.


  5. This is just lovely. When you write, I cannot help but think about my own journey. That reflection is really important for me, so thank you for that! Fave paragraph: “Now it’s possible to kind of morph back and forth at will. And in doing that, I often find delight and humor and a lot of fun in this earthly experience.” I feel likewise.


    1. Isn’t it divine, shiny one? It’s so dreadful to think this is all there is, and so delicious to find the More. It’s such a freedom now. We’re just here playing and experiencing the all of it. Such fun to share the whole thing with you and your beautiful bride. Xo

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Your commentary touched my heart. It was absolutely earthshattering and it reduced me to tears. The fact we are all one and here to share love and compassion life in full expression. God bless you, and if we don’t meet in this life, we will meet in the next. Xxx


    1. I used to hear about Oneness way back in the day … 40+ years ago. It made no sense. Sounded wacky. But to have experienced these things … wow!!! Makes me wonder what else is coming. Something delicious, no doubt, especially since now surrounded by kindred spirits. Thank you for reading, Jacqueline. It means a lot.


  7. Thank you Lynette! We have so much in common! Sometimes slowly, sometimes quickly.. I know you get it. We have so many Gifts and I Am Grateful!


  8. Your beautiful words never fail to move me and bring me so much JOY. I love feeling the warmth of your light that shines ever so brightly. Sending my love and gratitude❤️


  9. Love you, and reading your words always feels like a warm hug. I struggle to navigate the immensity of grief, firmly planted in deep loam; I WAS is my Iron Maiden. Thank you for snapping me briefly into I AM, and a realization that the sun shines continuously even when we spin away from it.


    1. I WAS, oh how deeply that resonates, Tate. I so wanted to go be with him in 2012 and for years after. There’s an equilibrium now, but no desperation. Loving life. LOVING the day of our reunion, whenever that comes. Thinking of you, honey.


  10. Your words are drops of life, teaming with love and compassion. They are a balm to our souls. Thank you for sharing your knowing and your gifts. 🥰🥰🥰


  11. Lynette,


    div>As always, your posts are beautiful and profound. You should have been a professional writer… you would be


  12. Lynette, how grateful am I that your writing and insightful perspective have come into my life. Your words speak from my heart. Thank you, thank you!


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