Life Has A Crush On You

Falling in love with Life one day at a time…

Category: Christian

Merging

Highways might as well be a prayer rug for me that stretch out across the country. I travel often, most often by car, and every time, I find myself on my knees, bowing down, asking for some grace on the journey.

In reflection I can see that I really do love this. It’s a small reminder of the power of living a prayerful life, of surrendering, while still gripping the wheel, heading into your own direction, at speeds hard to fathom.

The prime time I pray- a simple and direct prayer- is before merging onto highways. The cars whipping by. The blindspots. The inability for me to punch my speed to match theirs as quickly. Wow, do I pray.

And there, every time, within moments, the prayer is answered. I cannot tell you how remarkable- truly awe-some- this prayer is. I merge onto congested and racing speedways with wide gaping holes in the traffic. How do I help you understand this even more? Every time, each time, I pray and then I come onto a highway where there are dozens of cars 50 yards ahead of me, and dozens 50 yards behind, but rarely a car even on the 4 lanes I enter. And every time, in the expanse of the highway I am reminded of the power of the Divine. I am reminded of our use of prayer. I surrender in awed gratitude to the ability of Life to protect, guide, and help us.

This past Thursday, as I was heading to Charleston, South Carolina, I was doing this practice, amazed yet again, and a thought came to me, as they so often do- out of the blue.

“Why don’t you pray for the merger of your career?”

Of course it clicked right away. Like the sky knocking on my thick skull – “Hello! If I can work in traffic, I can work in your other future paths too.”

So I did. I prayed for the safe and bless merger of my writing career.

We think these big life decisions, these dreams and songs of our heart are massive and slow moving like glaciers, and sometimes they are. But sometimes they look more like the Interstate.

I can’t help but feel like Squirt from Finding Nemo. When he gets knocked out of the East Australian Current and has to merge back in, with power and with courage, his Father waiting patiently for his safe return, which he knows is coming.

 

What thought would I have to think right now to feel great?

This is the question that has been occupying my mind last night and this morning. Every time a sense of overwhelm creeps in I pause. “What thought would I have to think right now to feel great?” In an instant my perspective, my day, my body changes. I am focused and forced by the question to see my options of other thoughts and of other ways to feel.
I know questions can be one if he most powerful mood, emotion and life changers- but it’s rare for me to find one that works so universally. If this life is ours to create, the foundation, the blueprint starts with these questions.
Take some time right now while reading or next time you start to feel stressed, annoyed, even physically sick and ask yourself, what thought would I need to have right now to feel great? What do you hear? What thought are you led to?

Abundant living comes from recognizing, seeing, and embracing the abundance that is already ours. Any thought can be yours. Your wealth of thoughts abounds. Enjoy it!

I would like to offer deep thanks to Cheryl Richardson for bringing this question to me and to Louise Hay for bringing it to her. It has opened up a whole new world for me! I hope you enjoy it too!

Following your own blueprint at work

It is interesting moving into February and March. This weekend marks the beginning of a downhill slope for me of event after event. All I can think of when August finally does come is that I will have gotten at least 100 times better at all my jobs with all this practice!

But the question- the balance- lays in the approach. Will I derive a judgment of my work by the approval of others? Will success lay in the hands of my colleagues, bosses and general opinion? Or will I so dare to acknowledge the one true judgment, the one true standard, the one that lays within me?

It is an act of vulnerability to fearlessly pursue the tasks before you with your own personal blueprint for joy and unique expression. You are taking off the cloak of business, of stress, or being overburdened, which in some work environments can be measurements of your effort or even success at completing the job.

It is radical to find joy where others find stress. It is radical to trust when typically we try to control. It is radical to move from your heart not your head at your desk.

Like most radical things this new movement of yours will either die of its own accord- or change the world- your world- in deeply moving and profound ways to produce a life you were destined to live.

So yes, there is risk at working according to your own blueprint. But there in also lies the risk of never trying, the pain of conforming to a shape that isn’t yours, and a life spent worrying and stressing over the fickle opinions of others.

I hope as I begin this busy season of work that I remember my own orientation. That I make decisions aligned with the Divine that lives within me and that I remember this guidance is always available so I too can relax and enjoy this marvelous ride.

From “A Course in Miracles”

 

To heal is to make happy. I have told you to think how many opportunities you have had to gladden yourself, and how many you have refused. This is the same as telling you that you have refused to heal yourself. The light that belongs to you is the light of joy. Radiance is not associated with sorrow. Joy calls forth an integrated willingness to share it, and promotes the mind’s natural impulse to respond as one. Those who attempt to heal without being wholly joyous themselves call forth different kinds of responses at the same time, and thus deprive others of the joy of responding whole-heartedly.

 

To be whole-hearted you must be happy. If fear and love cannot coexist, and if it is impossible to be wholly fearful and remain alive, the only possible whole state is that of love. There is no difference between love and joy. Therefore, the only possible whole state is the wholly joyous. To heal or to make joyous is therefore the same as to integrate and to make one. That is why it makes no difference to what part or by what part of the Sonship the healing is offered. Every part benefits, and benefits equally.

 

You are being blessed by every beneficent thought of any of your brothers anywhere. You should want to bless them in return, out of gratitude. You need not know them individually, or they you. The light is so strong that it radiates throughout the Sonship and returns thanks to the Father for radiating His joy upon it. Only God’s holy children are worthy channels of His beautiful joy, because only they are beautiful enough to hold it by sharing it. It is impossible for a child of God to love his neighbor except as himself. That is why the healer’s prayer is:

 

‘Let me know this brother as I know myself.’ “

Chapter 5, “Healing and Wholeness”. A Course in Miracles. Volume 1

 

 

 

 

God Windows

It’s hard not to write about this when you come into contact with it again and again, day by day. It’s when you walk consciously into an answered prayer. I have been taught that no prayer is too small and here are some examples.

It has been raining all night and all morning. While I thought I was prepared, this morning I realized I didn’t have my umbrella. So I prepared the best I could with raincoats and trash bags and fully accepted the potential fate of being wet all morning from my walk and wait for the bus. I step outside all bundled to find not even a drop is falling. A God window opened.

On Tuesday I drove into Atlanta, a drive that usually makes me nervous especially around rush hour where hundreds of cars vie their way pass you. Yet, just as with every time I drive in a major congested interstate, I prayed on the ramp for a successful and safe merger. Each of the 4 times I entered one of the major highways it was as if there were no other cars for half a mile before me and half a mile behind me. Truly unbelievable that for a 6 lane highway- during rush hour- every time I merged, there were no cars even close. Like a mini- yet no less remarkable- crossing of the Red Sea, I found myself in another God window.

This is what I hope we can all remember today. Despite appearances. Despite known facts or preconceived and lived experiences, we can all ask and be grateful for these God windows. Little pockets meant just for us to live into and keep us safe.

Mind Candy

My morning tradition was disrupted today when I left my iPod in the car that Drew took to work. Somehow, on this rainy Wednesday, this seemed to be a good thing. It seemed to welcome in some space without words into my morning.

I realized that while I love and find it useful and powerful on so many levels to start my day by walking to the bus stop listening to a program, a speaker or something inspiring, it is powerful too to hear yourself some mornings.

Instead of trying to stuff down some programming, I decided to gently step out into programming myself. I was quick to realize that even the positive thoughts and affirmations I used to say, those that come naturally and almost immediately to mind when I think – ok, lets affirm- seem stale, or at least burdened with a twinge of disbelief from my heart.

That is the last thing I want – inauthentic words. Empty vessels trying to create something.

No. The entire power and purpose of affirming, of self-speak, is the emotional certainty you feel with the repetition and knowing of what you are saying.

So this morning I had to back track. I had to be completely honest with myself. When I said something and it didn’t feel “right”, then I lessened the degree. I turned back and let go a bit, and said something new.

It was as if my mind was in yoga. Just as when I enter into a pose, I find the edge – and while I think  “Oh, your growth will be if you push through and go beyond this limit”, my wise self says “Oh, ok, that is where the limit is. You see it; you found it, now back off a bit and breathe. The limit will dissolve by your working at this lesser place.”

It is interesting when you sit with your own mind – in walking meditation, or sitting meditation- without any other words. No voices guiding you. No songs luring you. Just you, being you.

So, while I started this morning with grandiose phrases – ones that I had used before – I ended up being at two simple ones. These were the ones that “clicked”. These felt right. So I stayed there. I dwelled in the rain saying to myself – out loud and quietly – “My job is fast, easy and fun. My job is fast, easy and fun. My job is fast, easy and fun.”

And eventually, it came – the soothing, quiet phrase that whispered to my soul and tasted so good I couldn’t leave it all morning – it was a gentle, “I love you, Elizabeth.” It was a true surrender of all the self-improvement talk – of all the let’s be the best – let’s do better- self-speak that I hadn’t even realized was crowding up my mind quite so much.

So today, this is my mind candy. This is the refreshing drink to my thirsty soul. This is the day, I turn everything else off – and I turn myself on – even if it’s a quiet, ever so gentle whisper. This is the day that I remember, that I really do deeply love myself, as much as, I love others.

For every dream of yours you have the tools…

A moment ago I read this from the blog of Paulo Coelho.

 

“Our dream, the desire that is in our soul, did not come out of nowhere.
Someone placed it there.
And that Someone, who is pure love and wants only our happiness, did so only because he also gave us the tools to realize our dreams and our desires.”

(The rest can be found on  http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2013/01/11/our-dream-2/)

My soul took a breath for a moment with this beautiful reminder. It seems that January has started in full force. The rest and break the holiday afforded has refreshed us and propelled us into many new endeavors on top of all the projects we were already doing. For me, I love it. There is something that is always comforting about the fact when I am doing a lot, and doing that which my soul has whispered for me to do for years. It makes me focus on the necessary, and when I focus on the necessary, then I sense the efficiency of nature coursing through me. I feel that I am being an instrument for good and joy in the world.

As Paulo Coelho reminds us, the ideas and dreams that we have come to us for a reason. They were planted in us, intentionally and with full purpose. And just like any good gardener, this Someone does not just let the seed have to fend for its own water and sunshine and nutrients. All that is needed for the dream to grow and fruit is provided – we already or will have the tools to accomplish our growth and soul’s work. While you have to do your part of allowing the essence and path of the seed take place, we are all given all that we need to accomplish what is being asked of us.

So often when we sense a calling, a dream, a desire of the soul, we hesitate. We think of all the other things that are urgent and necessary and that take up so much of our time. Yet the truth is that the easy fulfillment of this desire is before you. You have all the resources, all the tools, that you need to “hammer” it out. Your life, your experiences, the hidden tools you already possess will make themselves apparent and useful.

So what?

So don’t delay! There is no time like the present. There won’t be “more” time later. There will be the same crunch. The same hesitation. The same “overwhelm”.

Today, instead, lets change our focus. Let’s see the wealth of resources before us – even if it’s the five minutes we drive in the car alone that allow us to make a phone call, or the extra $100 that you can spend on doing that which you thought of doing years ago to spread a message you believe in. Perhaps its the fact that you have paper and a pen (resources that not many people have). Perhaps its a gift of music, or inspiration that you can offer someone. Perhaps its an excel spreadsheet where you can lay out a plan. While this spiritual truth of having all the tools needed to realize our dream is true of everyone, it is only bestowed on those who realize it. Pause. Breathe deeply. See the depth of resources before you and within you. And recognize how you and your life are perfectly aligned to the accomplishment of that which you think is “too good to be true”.

Unbreakable Joy

There are mornings when I awake that are filled with in breakable joy. I know I write about this often but it’s as if these thoughts and emotions fill me up so much to the brim of my being that they have to overflow. While they spill out in conversations and meetings and yoga or whatever I am doing, I can’t help but to feel even greater joy to let them spill onto the page.
Without effort, while still in bed everything reminded me if the Divine blessings my life is filled with today. My mattress was soft and the quilts on it warm. We were safe in our home all night. I was still satisfied from a delicious meal that was enjoyed with my family, a family that made sacrifices for each other and family that is all together, a family that celebrates and is healthy. I have a toothbrush and toothpaste! I have running water. There are so many clothes in my closet and we could literally choose whatever we wanted for breakfast. There were messages from loved ones on my phone and a dog to wake me out of bed. There was peace with my job and a joy that I have one and one I like. The man I love more than anything was singing in the kitchen. Thoughts and ideas of how I can contribute and contribute easily came to me and added to my excitement, an excitement that time and time again brings me to my knees in great awe.
So what could this mean for you? Really whatever you want it to. But I hope that with this spillage you realize that you too are invited to this unbreakable joy. That with every faucet you turn on, with every sip of clean water, with very heated room and every caring person, you are reminded of your status as elite, as blessed, as royalty of this world and life. This is a day filled with these and so many more miracles. I pray you feel as full from them as I do now and forever.

Watching the Waves

There are moments everyday of disappointment. Moments when we catch ourselves plummeting, when we sense loss and tighten up. We brace ourselves for the fall.
I know when these happen, sometimes in the tiniest of moments for me. Someone says something. I hear something from somewhere, I spin into reaction. I try to find a grip. Sometime I grab onto things that give me a false sense if control and steadiness- blaming others, anger, eating, jumping into unplanned action. But I know these are just temporary fixes. Band aids for a wound that might need some time to heal.
But I can sense I am on the right path since I know when these moments come where I loose my footing. I can feel my breath stop. I can feel a mood brewing in my blood, uninvited. I can see my hand reach to stuff down another emotion with something to occupy my mouth. I can see my true self shrink by enlarging the issue before me.
While there are many strategies out there to help us with those moments that surely come up daily my only cure right now is to watch the waves. I set a timer to literally create some space for me, some time where I a not allowed to do anything- talk, eat, even think. I can only breathe. Deeply. Audibly, visibly with my chest rising and falling. This is the secret ocean I carry around with me. Hidden, like an ancient secret cove, these are the waves that smooth the jagged edges of anything in its way. I get the same peace in this time as I do sitting by the shore. I get the same wonder on this edge as I do standing and searching for an ending that doesn’t exist on a vast ocean. And to think, it’s always there. I can choose to always live by the sea. I just have to turn around. I just have to pause to hear it crash on the shore, rhythmically reminding me there are things that came before and things that will outlast. I just have to breathe.

Intention and Resolution Questions for 2013

Ever since I began a daily spiritual devotion I have gained greater clarity with each passing day and year. It is comforting to come to New Year’s Day with a peaceful heart and the ability to articulate clearly what I desire to contribute and be in the coming year and years. My goals are attainable but make me stretch. My vision is exciting. My plan to accomplish these things is enjoyable! I hope that you too enter into this year with excitement, passion and clarity!
My affirmation for myself and you is that this coming year is the best yet! That 2013 is filled with deeper love, greater growth, more abundance and joy in every day!

While we all have ways to establish our intentions for the coming year, below is an outline of questions that were sent to me and that I have found useful and enjoyable at this turning of the year. I hope you do too. I toast to you!

1. What do I truly value?
*My primary goal is:
*I want to be _________ kind of person
*How do I want to feel each day?
*What do I want to experience in this life?
*Where does love fit in to this picture for me?

2. Personal Mission Statement
*What is my goal for my daily practice?
*Share that goal with someone else.

3. How can I express myself and my goals in my life?