This month’s featured art is the interior wound of a cactus – in this case, a wound that helps the cactus survive.

Watercolor on Paper
15 x 20 inches

Look no further than nature for the best analogy of why wounds are necessary to reach our fullest potential. When a cactus is wounded, it responds by creating a tough interior bark; one that helps it retain water and continuing growing in extreme desert temperatures. This process is both amazing and beautiful: the stages include an incredible “unveiling” of many layers, much like what happens to us when we are wounded.

There is no doubt that life is a series of unexpected wounds; small, medium and large. We are always given the choice to step up or give up, to weaken or become stronger and more beautiful, like the bark of the cactus. It begins by trusting that every situation is an opportunity to learn and grow, something that is so much easier said than done.

Just like anything else, “trust” is a practice. It calls for time and deliberate, ongoing personal effort. To me, trust is the greatest of all life’s journeys: once we surrender to it, everything becomes possible.

Trust begins with trusting yourself – your decisions, your insights, your own inner wisdom. This is not to say that every decision you make will have a perfect outcome, but it is to say that your soul and spirit hold all the answers to what will bring you the most learning.

Diving into a trust practice begins with opening your Spiritual Toolbox, and choosing whatever practice supports you in being the most present: whether it’s a walk outside, some form of meditation, or getting creative in any way, the first key is discovering what most helps you calm your mind, lose track of time, and “connect” with something greater than yourself.

The second key is using this tool – regularly, as preventative medicine. In this way, when life changes course, you can trust yourself to trim your sails.


Elizabeth Bryan-Jacobs