Spiritual Food For Today
July 9, 2019
Believing is all a child does for a living. (Kurtis Lamkin)
Picasso once said that artists are those of us who still see with the eyes of children. Somehow, as we journey into the world, we become more and more literal. We learn to accumulate data from the surface of things and stop believing in their hidden essence … no longer questioning things in order to move more deeply into them but only as a way to challenge things we fear are false.
As a child I used to talk to things — birds that flew overhead, trees that swayed slowly in the night, even stones drying in the sun. Then I stopped doing this in front of people for fear of what they might think until, as a “grownup”, I stopped altogether. Then I learned that Native Americans believe nature holds great wisdom which can only be understood by believing with innocent eyes right into the center of things.
These days I don’t hesitate to talk to my dog and my plants and the mountains and the sky … what I need to do now is listen longer for their reply.
Today I slow down enough to peer into the beauty of summertime and listen for its wisdom.
July 16, 2019
Be An Uplifter!
“There is no effect more disproportionate to its cause than the happiness bestowed by a small compliment. ” (Robert Brault)
The film “Validation” tells the story of a fellow named Hugh Newman who works in a parking garage validating tickets for restaurant patrons. Yet Hugh’s validation goes far beyond stamping parking tickets. When customers arrive at his station, he enthusiastically compliments them on their smile or their attire … anything attractive he sees in them. One by one, tired patrons light up and come away with a sense of joy, confidence and energy absent just a few moments earlier.
Hugh’s reputation as an uplifter spreads far and wide, to the point that people come to park in his garage just to receive the validation from him that they are missing in the rest of their lives. Hugh is a true healer, using his worldly occupation as a venue to feed people’s souls.
The principle of Hugh’s story is very real. Most people have been criticized and verbally or emotionally whittled down to a self-image far smaller than they are and deserve. When someone comes along who affirms their beauty, gifts and worth, they come to life and walk taller, freer, and happier. There is no gift greater than seeing people as magnificent and reflecting this back to them.
You, too can create results on par with Hugh’s. Just think about the people you love and value and contact them to deliver your appreciation. You can make their day — or year — with a short phone call or e-mail describing the beauty you see in them and saying how grateful you are that they are in your life. AND, don’t forget to validate yourself. The first ticket to stamp is your own.
Today, I empower others and myself by expressing sincere appreciation.
July 23, 2019
When I worry, I am agreeing that external things have power over me. But when I put thoughts of anxiety and worry out of my mind, I rest in the assurance that all things are working for my highest good. I readily see that I cannot think an anxious thought while thinking thoughts of good, trust and confidence. I cannot be disturbed when I abide in the presence of God.
This is not an exertion of my willpower, which may cause as much mental tension as worry itself. It is a laying aside of worry by focusing on peace, faith and assurance. I let the positive thoughts crowd out the worry and fill my mind so full that I am no longer anxious. Life is revealed to me in a new way when I no longer give in to worry.
Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet they are fed. Are you not of more value than they? And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? And why do you worry about clothing?
Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet even Solomon in all his glory was clothed as splendidly as these. — Matthew 6:25-29
Affirm: All things are working for my highest good.
July 31, 2019
Good Things Find Me.
Alan Cohen tells the story of the time he arrived at the site of a program he was presenting and told the program sponsor, Mary, how delighted he was to have been given an upgrade to first class on his flight. “Oh, I get upgrades all the time,” she responded. “I don’t even ask … they just put me up front.” “Why is that, do you think”, Alan asked her. Here’s what she told him … my dad was the Vice President of TWA. As a little girl I traveled with him a lot, and the airline always gave us first class seating. Now it just seems natural and normal to me.
This story is a great example of how powerfully our subconscious beliefs affect our lives. The experience of flying first class was deeply imbedded in Mary’s psyche. Although she gave it no conscious thought, her expectation generated consistent results.
We can tell what we believe by what we are getting. If life is going well, it’s because we expect it to. If it is not, then somewhere in our minds we expect that too. We receive as much or as little as we expect.
Accepting that we are the ones generating the experiences we are having is the first step toward creating something better. It correctly steers us away from trying to fix conditions in the outer, to the work of self-awareness and the raising of our consciousness. Spending time in an environment where people recognize your worth … where you feel free to be honest … where you are encouraged to do your spiritual work — this is the way to build a better life.
The script of your life is etched in your mind, and the people you encounter are actors in the movie you have written. No matter what scenes you have played out in the past, beginning this day you have the power to rewrite the story. Expect good to find you and it will.
I expect good to find me, and it does.
August 13, 2019
Just as I may allow clutter to accumulate in a closet or drawer, I may allow thoughts and feelings to accumulate in my heart and mind. Some of these thoughts may be useful, but some may be error thoughts that crowd out space for new ideas.
Today I do not delay the task of looking and seeing with clear vision what is true and what is error. I hold my thoughts up to the light of the Christ within me and claim only those thoughts that resonate peace, love and abundance. I discard and clear out any thoughts of fear, lack, disease or unworthiness. Clearing frees me. By establishing peace, love and abundance in my thoughts, I allow God’s good to fill my mind and heart.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.–Psalm 51:10
May you be at peace today.
September 25, 2019
Love Is Enough
There is nothing to do and nowhere to go. Accepting this, we can do everything and go anywhere. (The Tao)
The wisdom of the Tao says that life in all its complexity and wonder is complete as it — everchanging and vital, but never perfectible. This is not meant to discourage us from getting involved. On the contrary, accepting that the world can do quite well without us allows us to lay down the burden of being corrective heroes and simply concentrate on absorbing the journey of being alive. Perhaps we are to take life in through our hearts like fish breathe air through their gills. Ultimately, we are small living things flowing in the stream, not gods who carve out rivers. We cannot eliminate hunger, but we can feed each other. We cannot eliminate loneliness, but we can hold each other. We cannot eliminate pain, but we can live a life of compassion.
Growing older and hopefully wiser, I am coming to realize that I am not here to change the world after all. So, I have turned my efforts from trying to shape or better lives to expressing love whenever I can and accepting love wherever I can find it. Maybe this is enough.
Affirmation for the day: Love is enough.