So today and for every Wednesday in the near future, Wednesday's will be days about Spirituality! I know, there are those of you out there that just rolled your eyes and said, "She's going to get all religious on us. Sigh!" Well, maybe. However when I saw the topic it sparked my interest in the fact that spirituality covers a lot of ground in both perception and actuality. This could leave the door open for some really amazing blog pieces. Truthfully though, there maybe religion involved because 1) spirituality and religion are both synonyms and opposites depending on which side of the coin you are on and 2) I am after all writing it. So hang on to your Wednesday because here we go.
In my humble opinion, spirituality is something....anything that brings us closer to God, whether it be church, music, family, etc. Yesterday I saw a post on FB about Americans voting on their likes and dislikes of the 50 states of our country. My state, Kansas was voted the ugliest. REALLY? It made me sad because I had to believe that many who voted had never been to Kansas or they might have voted differently. As I went back and read comments this morning I realized that I was not alone. Thus today's blog!
Jason Aldean had a song out not long ago called Flyover States. It essentially talked about the fact that the midwest is so underrated in its beauty and that we are just regarded as flyover states and nothing more. (I will post the video at the end of this blog. It is worth the listen). The first time I heard the song I fell in love with it because I knew....whoever wrote the song got it and the way Aldean sang it, well it appeared that he got it too!
I have always felt that Kansas had a raw beauty all it's own. It is kind of like that country girl who wears no makeup and at first glance is overlooked and disregarded. Then there is that magic moment when you really look at her and you realize that she needs no makeup, nothing fancy and no bling. She is a true beauty without any fuss at all. Yes, to me...Kansas is that true beauty!
What does all of this have to do with spirituality? I believe it has everything to do with it. If you have ever seen a golden wheat field dancing in the wind just before harvest, played under a brilliant blue Kansas summer sky or sat in the back of a pickup truck in the country watching a full moon rise in the evening Kansas sky, then you know there is something amazing going on. It is something that makes your heart beat faster and makes you know that there are things much bigger in this world than us mere mortals. You feel connected to the earth and the sky and yes...to this worlds Creator.
Walking a leaf ridden street in small town Kansas in the fall or watching a spring storm with it's flashes of cloud to ground lightening and its rolling blasts of thunder does something to you deep inside that moves the soul and clears the mind. Hearing the locusts on a hot summer evening or watching the snow fall silently on a cold winter morning is awe inspiring. Knowing that I can drive down the road and see for miles with no obstruction from high rises and very little traffic makes me realize how lucky I am to be apart of all of this and realize that not everyone is as blessed as us Kansans are.
If you listen to a life long Kansan talk, you are likely to hear a grumble or two about the weather (too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer) but the thing is, they are life long residents for a reason. Like Aldean, they get the beauty of Kansas. They get the miles of prairie and the wind with little to block it as it blows across the plains. They get the tornadoes that often meet the spring, both their massive beauty and their massive devastation. They get the icy roads in the winter and the scorching heat and humidity in the summer. They get farmland for miles and small town life. They get that God made Kansas special....just like all the other states and whether it be farm, small town or city, each of us is blessed to be a part of such a beautiful state.
So I say, before you call us ugly and visualize us as nothing but drab open space, come see us in spring and experience that amazing storm. Come see us in summer and lay out under a pristine blue sky. Come see us in fall and witness the turning of the leaves and the feel of a brisk Kansas fall day. And finally.....come see us in winter when the air is cold and the snow silently covers farms and towns and makes us a winter wonderland that even Santa loves. Next time Kansas is simply just a flyover, why don't you stop in. Maybe then you too can know what us Kansans have always known. The true beauty of this flyover state!