Category: Vulnerability

Spread Some Joy Today > Vulnerability

Certainty

Certainty undermines one’s power, and turns happiness
into a long shot. Certainty confines.

Dears, there is nothing in your life that will not
change–especially all of your ideas of God.

Look what the insanity of righteous knowledge can do:
crusade and maim thousands
in wanting to convert that which
is already gold
into gold.

Certainty can become an illness
that creates hate and
greed.

God once said to Tuka,

“Even I am ever changing–
I am ever beyond
Myself.

what I may have once put my seal upon,
may no longer be
the greatest
Truth.”

— Tukaram

How Can There Be Anything Else But Love?

“When you understand now, today, that you are comprised of energy, and the man next to you, and the man next to you, and the man next to you are all comprised of the Creator in frequency, how can there be anything else but love? How can there be anything else but goodness manifested?”

— Paul Selig
The Book of Love and Creation

The Gift Of Life – Part 2

There once was a moment when time ceased, when all the heavens rejoiced. This was a moment beyond all moments, a moment that had never existed before in this time and space, a moment exalted by the celestial bodies, a moment so auspicious that the world would never be the same again. A chord on the harp of life had been stroked, and the thrill was felt throughout Creation.

New life is born. Rejoice! A heavenly choir sings in exaltation for the infant seed of life. Hope, faith, and joy herald your birth. Hope is for the blossoming of the seed, faith is for the beauty of its love and joy is for the eternal song of life. There is rapture in the heavens.

Tiny and helpless though you are, you hold within your being the most powerful force of the universe. You breathe the breath of God! Your essence is the spark of life. The light of the universal God flows and illuminates you. You are of greatest value, the most precious gift of God. Your power is the energy of Creation. With this power, you will move mountains, build dreams, and touch stars.

You are given the divine Gift of Life, but for this gift to be realized and to have meaning, you must accept it. This gift, the essence of life, is a sacred trust from the Lord God. Humility and reverence come when you accept the gift as a covenant of love from the Giver, and you glorify the Giver by the full expression of the gift.

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

[Note: The bold italic of the last line is mine. I think that this is such a powerful and insightful thought and I absolutely love how it is crafted. We have no need to glorify God so to speak, but we glorify God as we are the expression of the Gift of Life.]

The Gift Of Life – Part 1

The wonder and miracle of life is that the God of all Creation took each one of you and, by hands of love, brought forth a treasured expression of that love, Just as a Stradivarius violin is precious to its maker, you too are precious to your Maker.

God did not create you and then abandon you to a cruel and harsh world. You are not a detached, isolated, alienated creation set out upon the mighty ocean of life to be tossed about without compass or resource. You are given intelligence, creativity, freedom to create who you are, and God’s greatest gift of all–the promise of God’s own Spirit to dwell within you. You, like the Stradivarius, are made to give beautiful music.

Life is a miracle. I remember my wonderment and awe as each of my tiny newborns was placed in my arms. Each finger and toe, each little nose and mouth, an unbelievable creation given in love by its Maker. Each was life’s most precious gift to me, a gift of love to last an eternity. I loved these babies with a full, joyous human love.

Now, almost forty-none years later, I feel an even deeper awe and appreciation. Each of these–life’s children now grown–are unique, unlike any other, with special talents, gifts, graces, radiance, and children of their own. We are life’s children; we are gifts of God. Are we not created in God’s image with possibilities implanted by God before our birth?

You are created as a separate, independent, and individual person, yet you live with others in common unity and bond. We are at once the solitary individuals who must walk on our own legs and also the relational people who must have intimacy with others to be whole. Those who enter freely into relationships enter into life.

But you may ask, “Lord, must I give up my individual humanness to come into your Divine Love?” The answer is a loving “No,” for you see, God has given you the gift of life and wants you to experience life to the fullest by being transformed by Divine Love. God desires to infuse the unique you with Divine Love so that through your life you can uniquely share true love with others.

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

The Joy Of Service

When our Love
watches the morning’s birth,
allows a child to “be,”
touches a forgotten soul,
bakes a carrot cake,
we will know Joy.

When our Love
honors the other,
helps the helpless,
celebrates the birthing,
comforts the dying,
we will know Joy.

When our Love
plants roses,
shares our fullness,
writes a poem,
dreams a hope,
we will know Joy.

When our love dances with another,
sings to the angels,
whispers to a Beloved,
kneels in thanksgiving,
we will know Joy.

Joy is our birthright;
love is our purpose;
holiness is
God’s Light in us.

May our Joy be
as deep as the ocean;
our Love
as warm as the sun;
our Light
as radiant as the stars.

Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

Who Am I?

When you ask,
“Who am I, Lord?”
God answers, “You are
more than this face, these hands,
this body,
more than your feelings,
your laughter and your tears,
your joy and your pain,
more than your thinking,
your beliefs, your planning,
more than your doing,
working, making,
more than your past,
your parents, your circumstances
more than you titles
father, mother, child
doctor, friend.
You are more than
your anger, fears,
failures or doubts.
You are more than your successes
wealth or fame.
One moment you are this,
another moment that.
One moment happy, one moment sad,
one moment empty, one moment filled.
Like the clouds, you are ever changing.
You are a kaleidoscope, each moment
rearranging the colors of your being.
You are a many-faceted splendor.
You are a beautiful Gift of Life;
a radiance of God’s Light.
In Truth
you are of the Lord.
You are wise, you are beautiful,
you are kind,
you are a fountain
fed by the ‘living waters.’
You are God’s Love.”

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

Practice Makes Good Better

People are complicated. They have many facets, do strange things sometimes, and in so many, their ego leads their life. Nature is easy. That’s where I started in my appreciation practice. I began appreciating plants, trees, leaves, bushes, weather, the sky, the air, the temperature, the breeze, the small close-up view, and the grander wide-angle long views. It was easy and I felt so good expressing my appreciation in my mind. I was thanking God for all of what I was seeing.

Everywhere I went, whether just outside my home or in some other part of the world, nature was right there. As I would appreciate one thing, then I found it easier to appreciate another. As that happened, the Law of Attraction began putting other things to appreciate in my path until I was almost in a constant state of appreciation as I viewed nature.

Then I moved to people. In this, I would try to find at least one thing to appreciate about everyone that I might see, or interact with. I might like their eyes, their hair, the clothes they chose, or their shoes, or their smile, or their laughter. There are so many possibilities that I found it an easy challenge to like at least one thing about other people.

As part of this, I began seeing things about myself that I could appreciate. As I said earlier, to appreciate others and not ourselves is to not really appreciate at all. Then, the Law of Attraction began helping me see other things to appreciate about me. It might be things I said or wrote. It might be the way my hair looked that day. I began complimenting myself in the mirror. Then I began doing it aloud. I do it more today because it is so important to appreciate ourselves. After all, we are who we live with 365/24/7.

Then, I began practicing being bold enough to share something that I appreciated about another to them aloud. It is always interesting to hear and see their responses. It’s also funny. I might compliment a woman on her blouse or other aspects of their choices in clothing, and they will often say thank you, and then tell me how cheap it was and maybe even which store it came from as if they are negating its value by having it be inexpensive. But, whatever their reaction, it has always been positive and you can see how they appreciated someone noticing in their eyes, face, and body language.

Now I do this a lot. If I see the same people time and again like at the bank or something, I can always find something else to compliment them on. My finding things to appreciate is now habitual. I don’t even think about it much. I am used to seeing things to appreciate wherever I am, all day long. It matters not whether I am at home and finding things, or out and about, or at events. I am constantly seeing things to appreciate and I am constantly appreciating them inside.

Even when I see something that I don’t really appreciate, I find things about it that I can appreciate. For example, I’m not much of a fan of graffiti, or at least the kind of graffiti I see around where I live, but I can and do appreciate their creativity. I don’t appreciate that they are damaging other people’s property, or that they are uncaring about any of that, but I can appreciate their humanity and perhaps even that which causes them to feel less than and to try to be more than in an attempt to find their own wholeness.

On that note about graffiti, I see it and quickly look away. I don’t want to give it any energy. I used to give it all kinds of energy by putting down those who were doing these acts and feeling bad in the process. I have learned that feeling good is my goal and it is that which helps me to become more, so I turn to a better feeling view and give that energy instead. Even in this, it is all about finding something to appreciate.

On the other hand, the word graffiti simply means writing or drawing on a wall or other object. In some definitions, they use the word illicit. So, there are all kinds of graffiti that I truly appreciate, and some of it is quite spectacular as art. Even as I sit at the railroad crossing and see all the cars with graffiti on them, I see many with very elaborate painted words and images. Obviously, they had more time to spend on that project, but looking beyond the idea of changing other people’s property without their permission, much of this artwork is truly creative and even beautiful.

Then, outdoor murals can be considered graffiti. There are all kinds of ways to find appreciation in something that we may normally hate to see or even feel angry about and more. Becoming a grateful person is finding different ways to appreciate things, and I think even especially things, that we might not normally appreciate. It is life-changing—changing for the better.

Love Them. Love Them Anyway. Love Them Regardless.

“The secret of health for both mind and body
is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about
the future, but to live the present moment
wisely and earnestly.”

— Siddhartha Gautama

“It makes no difference how deeply seated may
be the trouble, how hopeless the outlook, how
muddled the tangle, how great the mistake.
A sufficient realization of love will dissolve it all.”

— Emmet Fox

[Classic post from 6-28-12. Note: As I reread this post, I thought of similar events in people’s lives that I know or know of. I thought it was an enlightening reminder to consider how we can enjoy the present moments with our loved ones and to worry not about the past or the future. There is positive in every so-called tragedy and as we open to what we can find in that way we are both transformed.]

Since I’ve shared a lot of myself in these blogs, I will continue that by telling you that my wife is dying in front of me and fading more each day. She has ALS, and other ailments and in the last year has aged at least ten. She was forced to retire this year by not being able to function in her capacity any longer. Most recently she was a Children’s Pastor, and now on disability with a fatal disorder.

How do I turn that into an inspiration? It depends on how one would look at this.

Indeed, it would be so easy to say how sad it is and to mourn the why’s and wherefore’s, seek blame, and that list goes on much longer, and it is to no avail anyway. If I believe that these things just are given out at random to undeserving souls, or some devil was to blame, or anything at all we might think of from the outside, it is a seriously sad situation. And, at the same time, feeling sorry and feeling the potential loss is casting a dark shadow on anything like love.

Yesterday, I talked about accepting situations as if we had planned and executed them on purpose, whether consciously or unconsciously. In my mind, it is only with this kind of thought that I can deal with this by accepting and to feel love rather than all those other fearful and sorrowful emotions.

Does the way we think affect our health? I think there is no doubt in my mind and we can watch people over time and see how they deal with things and one way is an illness. Is it too late? I don’t believe so, but it is not up to me. This kind of talk from me falls on deaf ears, but I am too close and she has her own mind and beliefs many of which do not match mine.

So what to do?

Love her. Find joy. Stay in the moment as much as I can because in the moment there is only love and no fear. Don’t treat her as being less than, or excessively careful and all that fear stuff, but to just enjoy all the little moments that we used to let go by unnoticed and unappreciated.

Life can change in an instant when someone goes quickly. Life can change in moments in situations like this. A lot of people around her are sad and avoid seeing her, talking with her because her speech is affected so much now, but I debate with her and challenge her and have fun with her. She was a debate champion and I never even got close to winning an argument on any subject and never had any fun with it either. But now, I have fun.

Now we just go do things on the spur of the moment or do things we haven’t done in a long time, go for coffee which never was her favorite and is now for some reason. It’s not about making up for lost time, or anything like that, it is just a relaxing in allowing the present moment to take priority. It never used to but does now. And, that is a lesson I’ve been working on accepting and learning of late as well.

I talked about one of my favorite books, Power To Praise by Merlin Carothers and that book is what taught me to praise God for everything including things that my previous training taught me to condemn. It is so powerfully true and in the practicing of it, I see his message so clear. It is acceptance, then appreciation and love.

It is also an inspiration to pay more attention to the present every day regardless of health and circumstance. I’ve always liked that quote that says, “if you truly love God, what is there to worry about?

Happiness Is A Choice To Be So By Appreciating The Abundance Of Love We Have In Us And Around Us. There Is An Endless Supply. Endless. Use It.

Spread Some Joy Today–See the sparkle in the eye, the smile of love in the face. See yourself as a reflection of others.

Absolute Vulnerability

“Everything is in perfect timing; you do not have to rush things along. You are an eternal being; you are right in step with the transformation. What's your hurry?

It is only your assumption that there is some mysterious “how” that needs to be known before you will act in the manner you desire. In other words, laugh; be happy… because you want to. As soon as you do, you'll match that frequency. There is no mysterious “how,” none that has to be there. And if you really want a bottom-line definition, then: “Live now; that's how.”

Any time you live right in the now, utterly in the moment, any energy that comes along, any difference you feel, you will match instantly, due to living fully in the now, accepting it all, open to it all through absolute vulnerability. This is not weakness, but openness, strength, self-empowerment. That's how. Live in the now with it. Assume that what is happening belongs in your lives. Accept it; acknowledge it; integrate it. Live through it; get into it. Explore it; examine it. Get excited.”

— Bashar
Blueprint For Change

Letting Go Is So Powerful

“When we understand the needs
that motivate our own and others behavior,
we have no enemies.”

–Marshall Rosenberg

I talk about letting go of the rope quite often. It is that rope that is interwoven throughout all of my lessons in one way or another. It is all about letting go of the resistance that I have developed, often as a protective measure, but ultimately self-defeating. 

I’m often reminded of the tug-o-war game where one person or many pulls against an equal sum on the other end of the rope trying to win by brute force, whether moving the opponent across a line, real or imaginary or some undesirable obstacle like a patch of muddy water. Back and forth they go, gaining ground, losing ground, until there is a final victory for one side and failure on the other. It is the epitome of the win-lose theme that is displayed in almost every sport, as well as in business, and even in personal relationships and family. Someone is a winner, and the other one a loser.

But, more than this, it is about resistance. The winner in the tug-o-war game is the one or the team that has the most resistance. Resistance is desired. It is a good thing. Not so in life, as I have learned time and time again. So, my mantra has become, letting go of the rope. The rope represents resistance. It represents struggle, perseverance, brute strength (or trickery). The more we resist, the longer we’re in the game. The longer we’re in the game, the higher the chance of resisting enough to resist more than the opponents on the other end of the rope. 

The opponents are trying so hard to outdo each other. It’s fighting. It’s cajoling. It’s fun if you win and not if you lose. This is how so many of us are taught how life is. You’ve got to get out there and make it happen, take no prisoners, win at all costs. But, really, it is a zero-sum game at best. When one wins and one loses, that speaks volumes about a vision of lack, or a lack-mentality. There’s not enough for everyone, so you have to go out and work hard and make sure you get yours. It’s bad advice at best, and debilitating at its worst.

To me, the rope has become such a great metaphor to describe the struggle that so many live and that I spent most of my life living. It is also a perfect metaphor for letting go, by opening my hands and simply letting go of the rope, making my own choices regardless of what others may think

I spent a lot of years learning that letting go was my answer or the key pieces of the puzzle of my life. I have spent all the remaining years practicing letting go.

Holding on is so normal, and letting go is the opposite, or so it seems. But, it doesn’t matter to me anymore what someone else thinks is normal or abnormal. Part of letting go of the rope is taking charge of my life, making better decisions, and enjoying my journey in joy instead of struggle, choosing love instead of fear and so much more.

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Mesa, AZ