Rev. Arlene’s Blog

Rev. Arlene Meyer, our Minister, posts mid-week messages on this blog. Come back often to read her inspiring and thought-provoking posts. Learn more about her.



From Rev. Arlene

In all changes in life there are endings and beginnings. As difficult as beginnings and endings can be, it is the Middle, some call it ”The Void” – the time between something ending and another thing beginning – that can truly be a challenge.

It is during this “Middle” that doubts and fears really rear up and begin to plague us. It seems like we will never reach our goal or that new beginning. We are neither here nor there.

Endings can certainly be upsetting; it is like an earthquake shaking up our life. The Void, is like being lost at sea or in the desert. This time can feel empty because we no longer have what is familiar and we do not yet have that which is new and often exciting.

But this time in the Middle is an important aspect of the change process in that it is here that we strengthen our spiritual selves in preparation for what is yet to come. There are many mystics that see this, “ Middle” as “Sacred Emptiness,” for it is during this time that we become truly alive, awake, and receptive to wisdom.
It is here, if we willing to spend time in The Silence, when God may speak directly to us…but we must be open and willing to receive His Presence.

Quote of the Week

“Everything that’s created comes out of silence. Your thoughts emerge from the nothingness of silence. Your words come out of this void. Your very essence emerged from emptiness. All creativity requires some stillness.” Wayne Dyer

From Rev. Arlene

Leaps of Faith – they can be scary, but if they were not, they would not be called a Leap of Faith.  The term Leap of Faith is about making changes that are not easy.  If they were easy, they would not require much faith.

Making a change in our home such as buying a new sofa is not a leap of faith although it is a change.  Moving to a new home, in a place far from your friends and family, is a leap of faith.

Some people have trouble taking leaps of faith.  They like to stay near the shore where it is safe – and there is no problem with that if that is what your heart tells you to do.  However, allowing fear to be our motivator in making decisions is not a good idea.

The next time you are faced with a difficult decision that is frightening because you have to step out on a ledge to take the first step, ask yourself,  “What would I do if I were brave?  What is my motivation in the choice I make – fear or love/faith?”

Something I have learned through the many leaps I have taken in my life is that, whether I land safely or whether I fall, it is always a positive growth experience.  Leaps of faith make me spend more time with God, spend more time in prayer and meditation, and in constant conversation with God as I move forward.

Remember that it is not a leap of faith unless it requires us to have faith even in the face of doubts and fears.  It is the “road less travelled” but it is the road of heroes.

Quote of the Week

“Be not afraid of growing slowly.  Be only afraid of standing still.”

Chinese Proverb

 

 

From Rev. Arlene

I believe that whenever two or more are gathered together in unity, The Spirit of God is there, in the midst of them. I have experienced this when faith minded people come together and the group’s decision, or group conscience, is God speaking through that group voice and vote.

And so it was this past Sunday as our entire membership unanimously agreed to move from our current location to a place we can truly call our home. We anticipate being in our new location on the first Sunday in April!

But what do we do when we are seeking an answer to something and there is no group – it is just you. I believe that there is Divinity within each of us so know this – you are never alone. When a difficult decision comes up – you can go within to access the wise being within, God, and find your answer.

That answer may not come quickly but if we continue to go within to seek the answer – it will come to us. However we must remain willing and open to receive it. And remember when we ask for something there are three possible answers from God – yes, no or not now.

Quote of the Week

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5

From Rev. Arlene

There are many steps we can take to deepen our spiritual connection, help us deal with our emotional issues, and give us more mental clarity. My favorites are service and meditation.

Service is something we often do not consider to be vital to our well being. We rarely consider service as a tool for our overall spiritual, mental and emotional health and yet it is one of the most important.

Giving helps us to find humility, gives us greater self-worth, fills us with gratitude and allows us to be less self-centered. Yet we sometimes overlook this when we are working on raising our consciousness.

There are many ways we can give back. We can give money to the place where we go for our spiritual nourishment and we can give of our time.

If you are not giving, try it! You may think you have neither the time or money to do it, but try it anyway. We really cannot afford to NOT do it!

Quote of the Week

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
Winston S. Churchill

From Rev. Arlene

There are many traits that lead us into being spiritually connected to God and to others. Qualities such as faith, trust, love, kindness, etc. But often overlooked is dedication or commitment.

Dedication is an important aspect in our lives and often determines whether we fail or succeed in something.

In businesses, the ones that are dedicated to succeeding, to being of service to others, are often the ones who get ahead. In relationships, the ones in which the people are dedicated to making the relationship work are the ones that last.

Most of us are dedicated to something or someone. Maybe it’s our spouse, our children or grandchildren, our pets or a cause. Without some dedication in our lives, we live a life that just drifts along and is easily pushed off course.

Dedication means to be wholly committed to something such as an ideal, political cause, or personal goal. What are you dedicated to?

It is a good idea to put our spiritual life up there with the other aspirations we are dedicated to. When we strengthen our spiritual life, we are also giving ourselves more power to achieve whatever it is we wish to succeed in, in other areas of our life.

Quote of the Week

“Dedicate yourself to what gives your life true meaning and purpose; make a positive difference in the life of your church.” Hallelujah McBerry

From Rev. Arlene

Do you realize that the one thing you do more often in a day than breathing is making decisions?  A Cornell University study said the average working adult makes more than 70 choices a day!  I don’t think there is anything else that we do daily and that often.

From the time we wake up, we make a choice – whether to hit the snooze button and stay in bed longer or get up.  Even when we make NO choice, we are making a choice.

So although making decisions is something we do on a regular basis, it does not make it any easier when tough decisions face us.  Some decisions seem so big that it can be completely overwhelming and so we often make a decision to make none.

However, when we do that we often miss some of life’s greatest blessings which usually come after we have made a tough choice and stepped out in faith.  That is why it is important to have a daily practice of going into the silence.  A mentor told me that in doing so, I was priming the “pump” so I could access the wisdom that was within me.

Before getting on the spiritual path I made many poor decisions.  But the good news is that, following my introduction into the spiritual life, many of these “bad” decisions turned out to be a blessing.  What is interesting is that my greatest time of spiritual progress came as a result of my making poor decisions.

Today, I take the time to connect to my Higher Power before making any choices, either big or small. Once that is done, I can step out in faith and take the action necessary to experience the blessings!

It’s never too late to turn your life around.  Regardless of the decisions you’ve made in the past, God can turn yesterday’s liabilities into today’s assets.  I encourage you to take the time to pray and meditate first thing in the morning.  Your day will become much more efficient, effective, and peaceful as a result of being dressed spiritually as well as physically.

This Week’s Quotes:

“It is our choices Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”  J.K Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

 

“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

From Rev. Arlene

How is the New Year going for you?  Did you make any resolutions or intentions?  Did you break them yet?

Whether or not you have made a resolution or an intention, if things are not going as you would like them in your life, you can always, at anytime, make a fresh start.  We don’t need a new year, a new month or a new week to start anew.  We need only today.

If you are already off your diet, it’s ok – just start again today!  Having trouble getting to the gym or beginning that workout program – no problem, start again today to do it!

In my own life, when my day is not going as well as I would like, I start the day again at whatever point I am.  I just stop, close my eyes and breathe, and begin again as if nothing has yet happened in my day.

I love fresh starts because it gives me an opportunity to always begin anew – and knowing that, brings me hope – always!

Quote of the Week

“I keep turning over new leaves, and spoiling them; …and I make so many beginnings there never will be an end (Jo March).”

Louisa Mary Alcott, Little Women

From Rev. Arlene

Here we are in 2017!

The new year lies ahead of us and we now have in front of us a book with 365 blank pages for us to write our own story.

We can decide how this year is going to be for us. We can choose if we are going to look at this year as filled with possibilities or just look at it as another year to dread. The choice is always ours.

Rather than look at the entire year, why not just take this year one day a time. We can wake up each morning and ask ourselves what we want this page to look like. Rather than setting big resolutions for the new year, which we will probably not keep and then beating ourselves up because of it, we can set mini resolutions each day – one day at a time.

If we want to be in better physical health, we can wake up and decide that just for this day, we will eat healthy foods and move our bodies in a realistic way. We can decide that just for today, we can be kind, loving, considerate and compassionate to those we come in contact with – including strangers or people that push our buttons.

Just for today, we can resolve to be the best that we can be – just for today!

Quote of the Week

“Each day we are born again. What we do today is what matters the most.”
Buddha

From Rev. Arlene

The clock is ticking and we are getting closer and closer to Christmas! For me the closer to Christmas the more I can feel the joy all around!

I believe we do not feel joy because of all the cards we have written, the presents we have wrapped, the decorated homes and trees, etc. I think it is because for some reason, it is easier to be conscious of Spirit during this time of year more than any other.

Maybe it is because of the music or the wonderful movies that appear during this season or maybe it is because during Christmas we feel the presence of our Higher Power more so than at other times. Whatever the reason, it is a time of joy!

Quote of the Week

“Joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.”
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

From Rev. Arlene

That elusive emotion called Peace.

The Christmas season is a time of Hope, Faith, Love, Joy and Peace, but it is also a time when many people are stressed, burned out, exhausted and Peace seems to be the farthest thing from their reality.

Everyone wants to feel peaceful but too often we use outside conditions to determine our level of peace. We seek exotic places, or look for a guru to help us find peace, or if we could just spend some time alone, we will have some peace.

Although those things can bring us peace, it is not The Peace that “passes all understanding” so we go in search of the next thing we think will bring us that Peace. True Peace is not found “out there” but within.

When we are truly at Peace, whatever happens around us or to us, does not upset the tranquility of our soul. When all around is chaos, noise, turmoil and dissention, the person who has found True Peace, will be calm within the storm.

And, although we may not always feel this Peace, we can take the time to stop, breathe deeply, relax, and meditate. This is the first step to True Peace. So this holiday season, try to remember to breathe, center yourself, and find The Peace within no matter what is going on around you.

Quote of the Week

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”
Gautama Buddha