HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Happy Thanksgiving!  

Although Thanksgiving may be different this year than in years past, take time to be grateful for all that you have.  If you have a roof over your head and food to eat, then be grateful.  If you have people to love and that love you, be grateful whether you are with them or not.

If you woke up this morning, be grateful.  Gratitude is an action verb.  We have to practice gratitude not just on Thanksgiving but every day, and we will find we have more things to be grateful for.

So instead of thinking about what you don’t have this year, spend time thinking about what you do have.  If you do that, you will be not celebrating Thanksgiving, but you will be “Thanksliving”.

In One Spirit,

Arlene

Share

Changes Again

Here in Southern California Life changing again thanks to COVID-19.

Orange County had been placed in a less restrictive tier and we were able to have people at church (although in a limited amount) and restaurants and other businesses were, also, open.  It seemed like life was beginning to look a little more “normal”. 

But that is in the past as of this week.  We, along with all the other counties in So CAL have been moved back to the more restrictive purple tier.  That means churches and restaurants can only serve people outside, bars are closed, and retail stores are back to the limit of 25% of their capacity.

The important thing to remember in all these changes is that everything is changing.  Just as the earth moves, the seasons change, all living creatures change, the world around us is constantly changing.  However, we can’t let ourselves get discouraged because of it.  We cannot stop these changes so the only thing that can bring us peace – is acceptance; and to know that this, too, will pass.

Quote of the Week

“It’s the circle of life, and it moves us all, through despair and hope, through faith and love, ‘till we find our place, on the path unwinding.”

Elton John

Share

Shine On!

Sometimes it seems like life can be just too hard – during times like this we find ourselves plagued by all our negative thoughts from the past, fears of the future, and discouraged about how things are in the present.  

We become filled with self-pity yet, for the majority of us, we have it good.  It’s just that we forget this in the midst of our feeling negative.  I once heard that if we were with a group of people and everyone put their life problems on the table, we would probably pick our own back up because we suddenly realize ours are not so bad after all.

It is important to remember during our challenges that we are all born with a light within.  Things can happen which may make us forget this, but that does not change the fact that the sun is still there even though there are low hanging clouds. 

So how do we remember this when we are feeling “out of sorts”?  We work on our daily connection with the God of our understanding and other like-minded friends, always remembering that we are never alone.  

When we deepen our relationship with something greater than ourselves, including others, we draw from a Strength and Power that is much greater than ourselves alone.  Please remember, that it is in our challenges that truly strengthen our light within which, in turn, allows us to be of maximum service to others.  So let’s all get out of ourselves by reaching out to encourage someone else today.  Allow your light within to truly shine.

Quote of the Week

The most beautiful people I’ve known are those who have known trials, have known struggles, have known loss, and have found their way out of the depths.

Elizabeth Kübler-Ross

Share

Spiritual Lesson from golf?

Life’s lessons come in many different shapes and sizes and often from sources we would never consider as a source for spiritual growth.  One such source for me was from a golf movie.  I do not play golf – I tried but it wasn’t for me.

However, when I saw the movie, “The Legend of Bagger Vance”, I felt a spiritual experience that was right “up there” with some other more traditional ones. The movie is based on the Bhagavad-Gita.

In the Gita, the troubled warrior Arjuna receives instruction from Krishna, Supreme Lord of the Universe, who has assumed human form as Arjuna’s charioteer. In the movie, instead of a troubled warrior, it’s a troubled golf champion (Ranulph Junah); instead of his charioteer, it’s his caddie Bagger Vance.”

Robert Redford, the director said, ‘The Legend of Bagger Vance’ is not just a golf story. It’s about a character who loses his authentic swing and has to find it again. And in that sense, it’s universal because we all lose our swing in one way or another at some point in our lives. We’re all tested by adversity and I suspect that all of us have at times hoped for someone like Bagger to come along and help us through.”

After seeing the movie, I wished I had someone like Bagger to teach me.  The truth, however, is now I have.  I have been blessed with good friends, sponsors, therapists, husband, and ministers who have come into my life to guide me at a time I really needed someone to remind me to “find my true swing (why I am here) and without them, my life would be quite different.

I believe God does not leave us to maneuver this game called life without the help of others – they show up sometimes as a caddy, but they can also be the person you meet sitting on a bus.  The point is to be aware and to know we are not alone on this journey of life.

Quote of the Week

“Yep… Inside each and every one of us is one true authentic swing… Somethin’ we was born with… Somethin’ that’s ours and ours alone… Somethin’ that can’t be taught to ya or learned… Somethin’ that got to be remembered… Over time the world can, rob us of that swing… It get buried inside us under all our wouldas and couldas and shouldas… Some folk even forget what their swing was like…”

Bagger Vance in the “Legend of Bagger Vance”.

Share

Wisdom for a Lifetime

What if there was a philosophy that gave us a simplified framework for achieving harmony, making life a little bit easier? 

There is and it has been around for thousands of years.  It is the wisdom found in Taoism.  The word Tao in Chinese means “the path” or “the way.’  Taoism has survived for so many years, intact, because it is a useful guide for living life and living it smoothly, peacefully, and filled with energy!

Wayne Dyer in the introduction to his book, “Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life – Living the Wisdom of the Tao” said, “Many scholars consider this Chinese classic the ultimate discourse on the nature of existence; and it continues to be a valuable resource for achieving a way of life that guarantees integrity joy, peace, and balance.  In fewer than 100 short passages, it describes a way of living that is balanced, moral, and spiritual; and that works for all facets of life on Earth.”

That’s quite a testimony from someone who has written many books, been on PBS, Oprah, and was considered a spiritual guide while he was alive. 

If this all seems too good to be true, try either his book or the wonderfully delightful, “The Tao of Pooh” by Benjamin Hoff.  I guarantee you it will change your outlook on life for the better.

Quote of the Week

“Do you really want to be happy? You can begin by being appreciative of who you are and what you’ve got.”

The Tao of Pooh, Benjamin Hoff

Share