“People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.”
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

What a wonderful description of a serene woman (or man). Both parts of the quote. We want to sparkle and shine and be full of color when it is sunny. We want to revel in the light and add to the beauty that surrounds us. And when it is dark, whether from stormy weather or the night time, we want to have a light within us that shows our true beauty – the beauty of humanity.

The trick is how to do that – how to have that light. What do we do to “sparkle and shine” in the sunshine – I think it is much more than having our hair and makeup perfect. What makes us radiant is, in great part, how we choose to see the world, how we bring out the best in all those around us, how we have kind words to share, how we treat the world gently, how we are playful with each other.

In the evening and in stormy times a different set of skills is called for if we wish to reveal our true beauty. Strength, calm, steadiness, quiet joyfulness, warmth, and loving hugs are part of the beauty seen in the dark.

That is what it looks like to me; but how do we get there? What do we do so that we can be all of those things? Perhaps one of the more important things to realize is that we ARE beautiful, we can reflect our beauty in the daytime and the easy times. That is built into each of us, we only need to learn how to tap it.

To do the same in the dark times, to be radiant and warm and loving, perhaps we need a sense of awe, we need to recognize how much beauty and power there is in the universe and to realize that we are an intimate part of that universe – and therefore we might well have access to that power. That realization does not come easily. Often it comes from enduring and growing from loss or heartache. Perhaps it is cultivated with tears. What grows, however, is not sadness or hurt; it is a realization of the incredible strength and beauty of the human spirit. Strong hugs that support each other, kind words that buoy spirits, silent presence that supports – all of these come from the fertile ground of humanity. Is this what gives us the “light from within?”

How do you sparkle and shine? How do you keep a strong light within you? Please join in the conversation so we can all grow and learn and become just a bit more sparkling.