Sunday, 29 June 2008

Lightening Up the Burdens of Your Heart

“ I cannot believe that the inscrutable universe turns on an axis of suffering; surely the strange beauty of the world must somewhere rest on pure joy.” ~Louise Bogan

“With an eye made quiet by the power of harmony, and the deep power of joy, we see into the life of things.” ~William Wordsworth

Think of yourself as a garden. Each day, being grateful helps to till the soil of your soul. We plant seeds of modesty and harmony, which root themselves deep into the earth of who we are and our everyday being. The flowers of tranquility inspire us with courage for both ourselves and for our loved ones, and the courage to make it real. Patience and beauty blossom around us, and we are happy. Not only are we happy, but, we have found joy, a wellspring of joy that refreshes us, nourishes us and renews us from the inside out. We have found our bliss, our place in the world.

I have been lucky enough to walk amongst the daffodils that Wordsworth wrote of so beautifully, and to spend some time in Wordsworth country. It is indeed very beautiful up there. A beauty we can all share in by reading his very beautifully penned words. He was able to see into the life of things through the power of his mind’s eye and he was able to share it with us through his words.

Seeing into the life of things is truly a life transforming step. In doing so, we should be able to embrace the path of true joy, the joy that is there for each one of us to take, instead of the path of struggle many of us walk upon so very often . . .

This involves learning to live in the present moment . . . in letting go of the past and the future. We must stop telling ourselves that the worst is going to happen and expecting it to happen. In doing so I truly believe we “will” it to happen, and it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. “WE” are the authors of our own misfortune. As we struggle through each day, from one crisis to another, allowing circumstance to batter and bruise us, we have forgotten that we always have a choice. We can choose to expect the best things to happen to us . . . instead of the worst. We can start to look at the glass as half full . . . instead of half empty. We can stop the drama and learn to trust in the flow of life and the goodness of the Spirit. We can be the authors of our own happy endings.

Today, suspend your disbelief and take a leap of faith. Tell yourself that today you are going to let go of the struggle and embrace the joy. Claim all the blessings that this day . . . today . . . has waiting for you to discover. They’ve been there every day. They’ll be there everyday. They’ve just been waiting for you to find them. In doing so, you will change the spin of your universe so that it now spins on the axis of joy, pure joy. That’s not to say that bad things won’t still happen, but let’s face it . . . In the midst of all that joy, how can misery and despair ever hope to gain a toehold in your life again??? After all wasn't it Paul who said:

"My grace is sufficient for you, for 'My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
~2 Corinthians 12:9-10

I see the Lemon Cupcakes won my Make Me Bake Challenge this week! Time to put up another one. I really enjoy doing this on my blog. It makes it a bit more interactive with you my readers and gives you a little bit of input in the types of things you want to see me cooking on here! I hope that it's become something you all enjoy participating in as well!

I don’t think I know anyone who is not fond of Roast Potatoes. Their crispy brown outsides and creamy insides just go perfectly with anything. Heck I’d even eat a plate of them all on their own, I love them so much. Here’s a potato you’ll love even more. These delicious little babies truly can stand on their own, but they’re heavenly with Lamb, Chicken or Fish! (Just in time for that Sunday lunch!)

*Oven Roasted Lemon and Herb Potatoes*
Serves 4

Crisp on the outside with a creamy interior just full of lovely flavours, these potatoes are like the Cadillac of roast potatoes. Their flavour is truly amazing.

4 - 6 large potatoes, quartered. (You may peel or not as desired)
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup olive oil
½ cup butter, melted
½ tsp dried oregano
1 tsp sea salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 fat clove of garlic, peeled and minced

Pre-heat the oven to 200*C/400*F. Lightly grease a large baking tray with deep sides. Put the quartered potatoes in a large bowl.

Combine the melted butter, oil, lemon juice, oregano, salt, pepper and garlic. Pour this mixture over the potatoes and toss them all together so that the potatoes are well coated.
Spread the potatoes evenly into the baking pan, making sure that you leave some space in between each one.

Roast for 20 minutes. Take them out of the oven and give them a good shake, turning them over with a spatula and spreading them out evenly again. Place them in the oven and roast for another 15 minutes.

Repeat the shaking and turning them over. Roast for a final 15 minutes until they are golden brown and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Serve hot as an accompaniment to your favourite roast!

*Note - this was, in part, a post that I originally wrote on my Muses back in January of this year. Once more, I am moving some of my best bits over here to Oak Cottage.


  1. I love your devotional. Youa re quite gifted in relating spiritual truths. The recipe rocks! I am printing it off as I type! Thanks for sharing this morning!!

  2. Beautiful thoughts for a Sabbath morning. I'm teaching the Laurels on agency today. I want to impart that we can choose happiness in much the same way that we choose to do what is right. Thanks for the inspiration.
    I'd love to try your potatoes. I've never added lemon juice to my roast potatoes so I'm anxious to add that in.
    Also-wow what a busy week for you. That must have been some exceptional wedding!

  3. Congrats on winning that challenge, Marie. Also, love your potatoes. But mostly...thank you for a very inspiring post. It spoke to me as I'm learning to change my thinking in this way. You are a beautiful person, sweety :)

  4. Aaaah - and I've just prepped crushed potatoes with garlic and rosemary. These would have been better. Oh well, next Sunday eh?
    love, Angie, xx

  5. Dear Marie, you comfort my heart with your words.I feel so weak so Im feel is for me these Pablo's words.
    Yes you have reason but when someone tell you "all is finish or my death or other death (about words or others)" and say "I dont believe in eternity" these words broke my heart because I always try to help my friend, and made me soo sad. Well I think the best is pray (again) and wait by a little miracle, the life is a miracle!!Thanks dear for all.
    Your recipe look so yummy!! Mom is at home by the weekend and she is going to make Ñoquis today (she is not italian but cook wonderful) yes Thanks for God and thanks for the life, kisses and a big hug, Gloria

  6. Your blog is the first one I go to each morning. It gets me going, so keep it up.

    I made your cabbage and noodles last night and it was delicious. I'll repeat this, I know.

    I also could make a meal of roasted potatoes, but I have the include onions and carrots in the roasting pan.


  7. To visit you here daily, Marie, is to find extra uplift for my soul! I have noted the Louise Bogan and Wordsworth quotes in my journal. My Buddhist practice has been leading me down such avenues of letting go, releasing suffering and embracing joy daily. We face to much in the course of 24 little hours...but much of the experience is a choice we make. I choose JOY! :o) And more JOY will be meeting you--one week from today! So thrilled to be meeting you for real at last! Hope everything went well for the big wedding...And congrats on the challenge! Love you, my friend ((BIG HUGS))

  8. Hello there! Beautiful post. I am a friend of Lura's (Grammy Staffy) she is in my ward and as a fellow blogger, she sent me to your blogspot. I love it and know that I will be a frequent visitor. Thank you for the lift to my spirit today. The potatoes were just added to the menu for this week!

  9. Hello again,
    We are home from church. I'm in a hurry but I had to drop in on you and see what inspirational thought and recipe you had for me today. It seems that I am addicted to my "Marie" uplift each day. Thank you friend.

    However, I can't stay long. I must run over and visit 1 sister I still need to see on my VT route. I kept missing her this month. I want her to know that I care enough to come by even if it is the end of the month.

    After that I must make dinner for Mindy and family. It is my week to cook. I love our tradition of trading Sundays for dinner. Like your Todd, for years John's callings kept him at church much of Sunday but now he is home with me. I don't have to set aside a plate for him to warm up any longer. If I need help he will even lend me a hand. He is great at cutting up mellons and fruit for a fruit salad. Sometimes he even sets the table.

    Must rush... besides it is close to your bedtime and I mustn't keep you up. I'm sure that you are very tired from all the hard work you did last week for the wedding and need your rest... so,rest well and I'll drop back by tomorrow.

  10. Thanks for asking me some questions! I'll have a post readied for you so you'll have something nto read while I'm in Alaska. I hope everything went all right. Congradulations on your award! The potatoes look tasty, as always!! Ben told me today that his parents may come stay with us when we get back from Alaska for a few days. They're watching our dogs for us, so when they bring them back they might stay for awhile. Then it's my mom's birthday the next weekend! Things are going to be crazy!

  11. I TOTALLY believe in the power of "The Secret". If you dwell on it, good or bad, it will come to you.

    I also have been trying to really focus on living in the moment instead of, waiting for the school year to end, counting the minutes till a meeting is over, feeling impatient in a grocery store line, etc. Enjoy the moment, whatever it may be and don't wish it away.

    Enjoy the journey!

  12. yay i can read your page today without it was driving me batty last week..just your so special marie!! ;-)
    I loved your words this morning..I am choosing to have a great day today!!

  13. Hi Marie,

    I'm quite new here.. about a week. I signed up cos I was so fascinated with your stories about your life at Oak Cottage.. those plums that you happened to find.. and your recipes.. well, I'm so delighted that I've got more than I bargarined for!! It's such a joy to read your blog.. so inspiritational and uplifting. And your 'ramblings' about writing nothing in particular.. I enjoyed it.. so no worries!! It's the little things that counts in life.

    Thank you so much!

  14. I am making roast chicken for dinner tonight...and I think I will make these potatoes with it!!


Your comments mean the world to me, and while I may not be able to address each one individually, each one is important to me and each one counts. Thanks so much!