By Shirley Leighton 
I have lately become aware of the value of situations in my life as being “gifts,” however wrapped, sometimes in thorns. Yes, everything contains some meaning and/or purpose – nothing is lost or accidental in the overall scheme of things.
The question comes to mind: What am I willing to pay for this gift? Am I really able to evaluate it in the light of God’s plans for my life? So often, blinders are in place, which prevent any actual insight into potential meaning or direction. It’s easy to go blindly on without acknowledging any special purpose in the judgments and conflicts that continually arise. I try to acknowledge the beauty on my bumpy road, but I’m always hoping for a smoother passage from one condition to another.
With the realization that each “opportunity” to grapple with unknowns is a gift, disguised in morphogenic form, what price am I requested to pay for it becomes an obvious query. What gauge can be used? No legitimate price sheet exists. However, I have found that trusting Divine Providence that presented the situation in the first place can be relied upon to represent a wise selection of criteria, and I can trust that all of it is in my best interests.
So isn’t that the name of the game we as humans are perpetually engaged in? Learning to bask in the silence of the universe’s constant reality – the nothingness of massive space – what higher purpose can the gift of time bring one? To trust and value the balance between earth and heaven becomes paramount.
Within the framework of all our chores to be done, love ones to be remembered, thought to be organized around some obligation lies the backdrop of freedom to which we can choose to turn for renewal. Time is there to serve us – coated in joy and resplendent in the liberty of our inimitable spirit.
 Shirley Leighton is a friend whose acquaintance I made several years ago on a trip to Tucson, AZ. She is a life-long student and teacher of metaphysics and world religions. She has written numerous articles and books over the years detailing her discoveries as she searched for meaningful principles for living. I had the pleasure of publishing some of her articles in Whole Life Development, a newsletter published some years ago. I welcome Ms. Leighton to the pages of LifeCentering. See also: