Spiritually Speaking Blog

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Find Your Beach

Love that Corona beer commercial reminding us of an important key to happiness – the ability to disengage. What a waste of time and energy we expend! Most of our stamina during the day is spent on things/activities that don’t really matter. We are bombarded with pressures to accomplish this, acquire that and measure up to someone else’s standard. We go to bed at night with our minds racing of yet what we need to do, feeling that whatever we have accomplished is not enough. Our poor souls are flooded with the misguided notion we need to do “more”. Why don’t we remember who we really are and why we are really here? Besides the mental ambush, we are bombarded with “notifications”. Our peace and quiet is disturbed with beeps, ring tones, chimes, horns and a host of other alerting sounds calling us to more action. Sometimes we need to take a vacation to “get away”…get away from our normal routine to put things in bigger perspective. We need some “me time” some “alone time”.  When we can “get away”, all the items on the “to do” list seem a little less important. With a travel vacation we find new surroundings, different people, and diverse milieu, we are forced out of our rut and jolted into a new awareness, like a breath of fresh air. The pressures gripping us release, our shoulders may drop and we exhale experiencing true peace. But instead of waiting for a yearly getaway, I think we need to carve out “beach time” during EACH of our busy days. What gives you peace? How do you... read more

Where Oh Where Is Love?

Love, like beauty, might be in the eye of the beholder: Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.’ – Chris – age 7 Finding the answer to this question is a lifetime quest.  We sing about it, read about it, write about it and consume ourselves in this constant search for love. Oh to love and be loved in return. Sometimes we misunderstand it. We keep confusing the cheap imitations with the real thing. Infatuation, sentimental tears, the teenage crush, passion, that warm cozy feeling – all very nice, but they’re not love. To love is to give a piece of one’s heart and not look back. Love sticks around on the good days and the bad ones. It does what needs to be done and never holds back. Love’s work is done in tiny pieces and can be done even by the smallest of us. Love has its bad days when its heart is cold and there few cheery thoughts to warm it. But even then, love does not falter and does not take back that piece of the heart that it gave away. Love’s work is never done, and its yield is never ending. Let’s give our hearts to one another and never take them back. I think maybe this child’s definition of love sums it up: ‘When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love. -Rebecca- age 8 Love is giving... read more

Amazon Has Everything But What I Need!

If I could order “patience” from Amazon I’d order a double dose expecting to receive it ASAP.  I need this virtue more than ever since immediacy is so much a part of our lives.  Our lives are propelled with insta-everything: on-the-spot photos, quick microwave meals, instant messaging, immediate email notifications, urgent replies, and critical responses. We want and need everything NOW. As our impatience mounts, we whirl out of control. Impatience breeds more impatience with ourselves, and it spills onto others, and then God. We get impatient with ourselves when: We fail to meet standards. We exaggerate the urgency of immediate success. We fail to acquire what we deem we need. We emphasize what we lack rather than what we have. We get impatient with others when: People fail to meet our time expectations. (Grocery lines and fellow drivers come to mind). People fail to see things the way we do. People fail to convert from their old ways of doing things into ways we think are better. People fail to keep up with us physically. We get impatient with God: When we feel the crunch of time. God works on DST – Divine Standard Time, not ours. We think we know what is best for us. We can see how our impatience mounts until it consumes us. Instead of letting it run our lives, destroy our relationships with others and keep us from bonding with God. We need to turn our impatience into patience. Since we are all on the fast-forward pace let’s remember this advice from Joyce Meyer: “Patience is not simply the ability to wait; it’s... read more

Just Breathe!

We are not who we think we are! We are first and foremost spiritual beings. Our wonderful souls infused with our human bodies provide us with all the tools we need on this earthly journey. While our eternal souls “signed up” for this School of Life to learn lessons to be more God-like in love, compassion, patience, tolerance, etc., it is our humanness that allows us to learn. We experience all the emotions, joys and sorrows through our everyday earthly lives. We need both body and soul. Our lives continue in abundance when we keep “body and soul” together! We need connection! How do we find, experience and maintain this connection? How do we enjoy our Divine heritage, being special children of God? Our common breath may be the answer. The breath of life began at birth and continues until the last. When it’s time to “go home”, we draw upon our last inhalation, surrendering our life with our last exhalation. Our breath, that we often take for granted, allows us opportunities to find real peace. Through meditation, stillness and release we are able to tap into who we really are and why we are here on earth. Mother Teresa knew the value of stillness. Her business card read, “In the silence of the heart, God speaks.” She sought silence to help maintain and build that connection. Many of us don’t have time or capacity for traditional transcendental meditation. But we could carve out 10 minutes a day to be still and “connect”.  Quiet yourself and “watch” and listen to your breath come in and out. One breath stops... read more

Never Lose Hope

The long awaited royal wedding day arrived with thousands of onlookers lining the streets to get a glimpse of history. Amid the cheering fans, the BBC interviewer asked a woman, “What does this celebration mean to you?” Her answer: “Hope”. To this woman and many others, this marriage celebrated a union symbolizing hope. We recall Frank Sinatra’s song, “The Best is Yet to Come”.  The lyrics are filled with hope. “The best is yet to come, and won’t that be fine, The best is yet to come, come the day that your mine. Come the day that your mine I’m gonna teach you to fly, We’ve only tasted the wine, Were gonna drain that cup dry.” Hope focuses the expectation of positive outcomes. Hope clears the surrounding darkness as we seek a out way. Hope can take the worst of circumstances and turn them into optimistic recovery. Like a kaleidoscope that twists multicolored pieces of color into artistic formations, our lives become a piece of art. Hope gives us the reassurance that the jagged segments will come together to form something beautiful. Without hope we are lost. “The world needs less heat and more light. It needs less of the heat of anger, revenge, retaliation, and more of the light of ideas, faith, courage, inspiration, joy, love and HOPE. “ – Wilfred Peterson I’m sure you’ve heard the story about the woman who told her pastor that when she died she wanted to be buried with the dessert spoon from her china. This woman knew that dessert is the last course, and the best. She lived knowing that the... read more

Are You a Perfect “10”?

The crossword clue read, three-letter word meaning, “be human”, the answer: “err”. Making mistakes, missteps and errors comes with being human. Then why do we subscribe to the idea of perfectionism in so many aspects of our lives? Our culture subscribes to being the “ideal family”, having a figure rating, a score of “10”, and the man that has it all, Mr. Perfect.  Schools promote perfect attendance, restaurants and hotels are rated by counting stars and religion sometimes places a priority on saintly behavior. (We have confession for those who “err”.) Wherever we look, we are being rated and judged to a certain standard of behavior. Often times we strive and measure ourselves against the ideal of perfectionism.  But at what price? Perfectionism is a personal self-judgment. It can lead to destructive and addictive belief systems. We seek to avoid criticism, judgment and blame. We try to fit in looking perfect. Brene Brown compares this ideal of being perfect to a 20-ton shield that we lug around to protect us, but in reality it’s the one thing that prevents us from taking flight. So rather than striving for perfection we should seek progress. Not that we don’t try to be the best that we can, but when we do err, we need to put the behavior in it’s place of learning the lesson, practice radical self acceptance and move on in a positive manner. In the 1970’s there was an article in Cosmopolitan entitled, “What’s Right With Mr. Wrong.” At that time if you were not married to Mr. Perfect, raising 2 ideal children in a home surrounded by a... read more

Life – the Balancing Act

Life is a balancing act. While I subscribe to the philosophy of squeezing all the juice out of life that I can, I realize that in some situations that I have no control whatsoever.   There are times when I have to throw my spiritual arms up in the air in surrender. I’ve said my prayers and waited for the answer, then waited some more. God seems to turning a deaf ear to my needs. After pelting God with all my pleas the answer is not what I expect. C’mon, God. It is exactly at these times that I remind myself that God ALWAYS answers our prayers. God replies in one of three ways:  1) God can say, “YES.”  This is the answer that we all are looking for! 2) God can answer “Not yet.” We have to remember that God does not deal on our time. God works on DST – Divine Standard Time. Our prayers will be answered sooner or later in God’s good time. 3) God can say, “ I have something better in mind.”This response is the tough one, calling into action our faith, trust and help. God knows exactly what we need and when we need it. God know our destiny and the lessons that we are here on earth to learn. With this knowledge and faith that my prayers will be answered, we need to shift to a different type of prayer. I call this the “Prayer of Surrender.” This Prayer of Surrender is based on four-evers: whatever, however, whenever, and forever. Whatever:Lord, your wish is my command. Whatever you want me to... read more

Squeeze the Juice Out of Life

“The purpose of life is to live it, to take experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for a newer and richer experience.” Eleanor Roosevelt Yes, this is not a dress rehearsal. I’ve always said that we are not here for a long time, but a good time. We are here to delight in the world finding joy in daily life, no matter what it brings. With darts of negativity being hurled at us from all sides, oftentimes it’s difficult to live that “juicy” life.  Gravity through the years not only works physically but emotionally as well. We need to surround ourselves with positive energy providing a platform for optimism, squeezing the juice out of life. Mother Teresa gives us some wise words to remember: Life is an opportunity, benefit from it. Life is beauty, admire it. Life is a dream, realize it. Life is a challenge, meet it. Life is a duty, complete it. Life is a game, play it. Life is a promise, fulfill it. Life is sorrow, overcome it. Life is a song, sing it. Life is a struggle, accept it. Life is a tragedy, confront it. Life is an adventure, dare it. Life is luck, make it. Life is life, fight for it. Use this prayer to keep that joyful focus:  Dear Lord, Let me delight in your world finding the joy in my daily life. Let my spirit dance all the way to heaven for the eternal celebration. I know you will provide me with all I need so there’s no need for me to worry. Thank you.... read more

Follow Your Bliss

Joe and I recently celebrated our 26thwedding anniversary! It was just like the storybook: “love at first sight.” It’s when the heart and soul scream, “Yes, he’s the one!” This phenomenon brings feelings of emotional intensity. It’s like your own cosmic attraction. So too, this feeling of bliss comes when you discover your destiny – deep down in your soul you understand how and why you are here on this earth. Your soul gushes, “Yes, this is why I’m here!” The recognition of purpose brings sheer contentment, blissful joy, and a relaxed peacefulness. It comes with the strength of conviction that we have chosen the right track, in spite of earthly setbacks. This feeling of being in the right place, at the right time and doing the right thing brings peace to the soul. Restlessness inside subsides. When we recognize our purpose, we seem to be in syncopation with the universe, effortlessly breathing in and breathing out, gliding through life. Similar to love at first sight, we don’t have to strain, worry, or stress to make things work. We are in an energetic field of joyful motion knowing that we have found our place and why. Our cups overflow, as the Bible says. Our hearts float, and our souls sing. There we find happiness. There we find God. But God didn’t promise us a rose garden. We are all to familiar with the pain and suffering found in our everyday lives. So how do we grasp this joy in the midst of heartache and tribulations? A truly joyful person has perspective, assimilating the world and its happenings according to... read more