God often speaks to me and gets my attention through the use of symbols. My two symbols are the butterfly and the turtle. I didn’t realize until recently how I must embrace both energies to live a balanced and fulfilling life. The turtle and the butterfly teach me many lessons and I am grateful for both. I believe we are all connected and can learn from one another.

For two days in a row, I put my turtle necklace on that my son gave me for Christmas. I didn’t consciously plan it, but I wore two different butterfly shirts on both days. As I looked in the mirror admiring my necklace, my eyes immediately fell to the butterfly on my shirt and I had an “Ah” moment. I knew in my spirit that it wasn’t a coincidence that the turtle was so close to the butterfly.

The turtle is grounded, connected to the earth and Spirit. It moves slowly, but steadily. It doesn’t appear to be in a rush and is content with its progress. It doesn’t have to be anywhere so it enjoys the journey and it trusts that it is exactly where it needs to be. It knows when to rest, be still and just be. The turtle is not afraid to just be and moves with confidence. It knows when to go in and protect and nourish itself. It also knows when to stick its head out into the world, take action and move. The turtle accepts “what is” and understands that having his head in or out are both essential parts of its journey.

How I want to be like the turtle and embrace its energy and wisdom. For me, sticking out my head may be moving in faith when I’m afraid and don’t feel good enough or deserving. Or it may be speaking up and confronting someone when I don’t want to. It may be just having fun and letting my passions run wild. Like the turtle, I go within and connect with God for wisdom, peace, and guidance. I know everything I need is inside of me.

The butterfly has freed itself from its cocoon after much struggle and strain. No longer is it a caterpillar crawling on the ground for others to step on. It’s able to fly and soar in freedom. It goes where it wants to go bringing beauty and Love for all to see. It’s free to do and be what it wants to be. Its wings flutter and it goes from tree to bush and back up into the sky.

I like to think of myself as a butterfly as I allow the wind and spirit to carry me wherever it wants to take me. It’s called “going with the flow or in the flow.” I am a butterfly when I use my gifts and talents for the good of all those around me. For many years, I struggled to set myself free from my own self-imposed cocoon of not believing and loving myself. My inner voice tried to stop me by telling me “You’re not good enough or deserving enough.” But my soul wanted to soar, and with the grace of God, I set myself free to become the woman God created me to be.

Like the turtle, I keep myself grounded through a daily spiritual practice of prayer and meditation so I can fly like the butterfly and spread Love and Joy to all around me. My spirit and wings are strong. I’m in the flow as I listen to what Spirit wants me to do and where it wants me to go. I no longer have to push myself or make things happen. I trust, rest, surrender, let go and let miracles find me.

To go higher and fly like the butterfly, I go deeper into my spirituality and just BE. I listen to that small still voice of God within and say YES to life and all it has to offer me.

Pat Hastings, MS LCDP is the author of “Simply a Woman of faith.” Pat is the President of her company and utilizes her gifts and talents as an Author, Inspirational Speaker, Spiritual Coach, Retreat Leader and radio talk show host. She is a licensed psychotherapist in Substance Abuse Disorders and has a private practice specializing in woman’s issues and Spirituality.

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