I was walking a deserted stretch of a beach that holds great magic for me each time I visit. Not only is the beauty unparalleled, but there is a special energy I feel when I visit here, almost as if this beach talks to me.

That day I was looking for seashells. I felt that if took something tangible from the beach, perhaps I could harness the energy I feel when I’m here and recreate it at home.

I found many pieces of large broken shells yet wished they were whole. Suddenly, my friend Brian appeared for just a few minutes and we talked about Wabi Sabi, the art of things being incomplete but still complete. His message was a beautiful reminder of not only the perfection in the seashells, but in my life. In that simple exchange between us, I was reminded that even if something appears to be imperfect, in that too, there lies perfection.

That day, I was dealing with some financial issues as I walked and told God about some uncertainty and maybe even a bit of fear I was feeling. After about half an hour, I was alone with nothing but the shells and the ocean. I was alone with my thoughts. I began collecting very small but perfect seashells. They were like tiny worlds unto themselves.

I found myself quickly lost in time and space, simply by changing my thoughts. It was so beautiful, the fear was left behind. It felt almost surreal and I wished that very moment of connection could continue forever!

Handful of baby shells

I started to notice the abundance of seashells around me, and found that instead of wishing for bigger, better ones, I was profoundly grateful for the perfection in the tiny shells that I had found.

I was filled with gratitude, not only for the day, but for my amazing husband, my friends and this beautiful beach. It was the perfect day. With each new wave crashing onto the beach, I felt more gratitude washing over me, cleansing me and chasing away any cares that I had.

My thoughts turned inward to the core of my being. Normally I am bombarded by so many outside distractions, it felt good to be focused inward. I walked to the water’s edge and as I gazed at the ocean, felt a strong urge to look down at my feet. There lay a beautiful spiral inner core of what once was a stellar seashell and I was struck by its exquisite beauty.

I picked it up and at first thought to give it to Brian for helping me get clear in my thoughts about perfection. Then decided it should go to my friend Arielle. But then I thought of Darryl, my beloved and how he is the core of my life. And then I thought, “What about me?” This could help me remember the core of who I am on days that life tries to make me forget.

As I pondered my choices, I thanked the sea for the gift. Within seconds four almost identical core shells came to my feet with the next wave. The wave answered my question by bringing me exactly the number of shells I wanted. Now, I had one for Arielle, Brian, Darryl and me. ?

I started laughing at how easy this is when I go inside and get out of the way. Suddenly I noticed the sounds around me…. Of shells moving across the sand in the tide.

I looked down and there were about a dozen perfect large shells at my feet!

Each wave brought another one to me. When I set the intention for my walk, these shells were exactly what I was looking for! When I let go and practiced gratitude, I was surrounded by abundance.

I chased the shells around in the moving waves as they came in and raced out, as if playing a game with the ocean. I splashed around the water’s edge as I picked them up, laughing, filled with a childlike glee. Where did they come from and why all at once?

They were perfect, shiny shells, not one was beaten, battered or encrusted with coral. I gathered a dozen and was still surrounded by more. I felt like I’d been panning for gold and hit the mother lode. Yet part of me felt almost guilty for scooping them up, thinking that I should leave some for others.

Then I realized that this stream of abundance was coming right to me, for me, and it was okay. I stayed there for only a minute or two just receiving.

On my hour-long walk back to Darryl, Arielle and Brian, I wondered why I hadn’t stayed longer in the flow of that stream. Already I doubted the reality of what had just happened.

I had set out on my walk in fear of scarcity and when the walk was done, I was given the greatest tangible lesson, in the form of an abundance of seashells. When abundance comes to you, accept it. Be grateful for it, and more will come. There is always enough for everyone. My breathing air doesn’t leave less for someone else, just as my taking a seashell doesn’t diminish someone else’s experience. My financial abundance doesn’t leave less for others, instead it creates a greater benefit for all.

And in what may initially seem to be imperfection, there too lies perfection. My hope is that when I get back to Colorado, looking at these shells will keep this memory and this lesson alive. I’m filled with joy and a profound sense of gratitude. Thank you Brian and Arielle for sharing Wabi Sabi with me. Thank you beach for always being the magical place that I remember and yearn for when I’m away from you.

Au revior for now, for with this beach, it’s never goodbye.

Author's Bio: 

The Self Growth Official Guide to Inspiration is Gail Lynne Goodwin. Gail Lynne Goodwin, known as the Ambassador of Inspiration, has been lifting people's spirits for years. Motivated by mentors like Jack Canfield, Wayne Dyer and others, Gail realized the importance of daily morning inspiration in her own life. After years of gathering and sharing some of the best available inspirational wisdom with others, she founded Inspire Me Today in 2008 to make the Best of the Best Inspiration Daily, easily available to the world. Get daily inspiration and your free "Secrets to Soaring" eBook at InspireMeToday.com Now!

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