I remember the crisp autumn mornings of elementary school, full of anticipation, angsts, new back to school sneakers, and a full complement of school supplies. One of the anchors of the day for me was roll call; the teacher calling each name to see who was there and who was not. I guess one could say that this was my first experience of call and response. When we heard our name called, we were invited to acknowledge our presence by raising our hands and saying either; “Here” or “Present”.
It has been a while since I have experienced roll call as such, yet I believe that Spirit calls my name daily to show up in some way.
“Be where you are; otherwise, you will miss your life” --Attributed to the Buddha
So, let us look at what exists beyond the verbal acknowledgment. Being present is an action that accompanies the response and causes us to pay attention to whatever is going on and not getting sidetracked or distracted. In other words, this means living where life is happening. I can hear the wheels turning as I type this, and I know that being present sounds easy, but sometimes it really is not. I do not know about you, but the 24-hour news cycle has been alive and well in my head, long before we gave it a name, is sometimes louder than the present moment. There is always something being broadcast in my thoughts or scrolling across the marquee of the mind that stands boldly between me and the now moment. If not that, there is an internal team meeting that is usually ready to share commentary on anything and everything. My internal broadcast has three settings; what was, what is, and what is not yet, and the analytics show that what was has the highest hit count. This live stream is brought directly from the land of “Re”. Dictionary.com suggests the following:
re- WORD ORIGIN. a prefix, occurring originally in loanwords from Latin, used with the meaning “again” or “again and again” to indicate repetition, or with the meaning “back” or “backward” to indicate withdrawal or backward motion.
Question: Why keep going back?
Here is the lesson: The roll call is not a rhetorical question. It is a declaration of being and purpose!
My Truth: When I am not present, I will not see what is going on right here, right now, and therefore miss out on much of the coolness of my very own existence. I am still working with this idea of how life, existence, and being is relentlessly trying to tell me something. I believe that being present has the power to show all of us more of our true selves.
Today, I invite you to a fresh experience of the first day of school roll call as a way of establishing who you are instead of wading through the pool of mistakes, missed opportunities, and misgivings of days gone by. I guess this is what it means to let bygones be bygones. Let’em go y’all! Beloved, you have everything that you need right now to show up and show out in the best and most beautiful ways. Be here! Be present!
Life, love, joy, and grace are happening all around you. Remember the present moment is the only point in time where you can decide what to do or say. Now is the moment that you have been waiting for and now has been waiting for you. What happens when your name is called?
These are the lessons that I have lived out loud, thrown upon this page as Just Words. May the essence of my life become light for your path and bread for your journey. Selah!