Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Everyday is an Opportunity for Alchemy

Where is the world calling you to create something wonderful
with what's in your basket?
Have you ever shared a challenge or obstacle you were experiencing with a friend or colleague only to have them respond with one of the many popular cliches or platitudes?

"If Life hands you lemons, make lemonade."

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."

"It doesn't matter how many times you fall, just that you get up one more time."


Today's reflection on obstacles and challenges in the Joyous Living Journal talks about those cliches and platitudes.

Yes, they can seem like empty phrases in times of crisis. No problem can seem so staggering as our own when we're in "that place."

Recently I opened a fortune cookie to read "opportunity knocks on your door everyday."

You know what I did with that fortune? I threw it away. I usually put the really good ones in my wallet but this one kind of rubbed me the wrong way.

Now, even though I didn't keep the fortune it stayed with me, in the recesses of my mind, not willing to give up.

I don't watch much tv, but when I do you will find my machine tuned into the Food Network and one of my very favorite shows is Chopped.

Chopped is a competition among trained chefs. They are given a basket of wacky ingredients, a time limit and a course to prepare featuring those mystery ingredients.

It's everyday alchemy.

Alchemy usually refers to that ancient science of attempting to change ordinary lead into pure gold. I like to think of alchemy as taking anything, especially something you don't give a high value to and turning it into something precious and beautiful.

I'm starting to go so far as to think about my favorite cooking show as a metaphor for life. We are tossed ingredients that we may not have consciously chosen and we are called to add our talents, techniques and knowledge of principle to create something uniquely ours for the world to taste and savor.