Spiritually Speaking Blog

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Start REALLY Living!

“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that’s all.” – Oscar Wilde Life is a wonderful gift. No doubt about it. But at times it can be confusing, leaving us weary and exhausted beyond all telling. God gives to each of us a life to be lived and great work to do at each stage of our life. Some of us start with gusto and fizzle out. Some of us just pretend to run the race, but never really start at all. And some of us grind slowly to a halt in routine. If we cling blindly to what we have, our old ideas, or the ways we have always done things, we will never become what we are called to be. We’ll dry up and die. We were made for more than dry crusts and cold leftovers. I read this piece by Pablo Neruda giving me a new perspective …. “You start dying slowly if you don’t travel, if you don’t read, if you do not listen to the sounds of life, if you don’t appreciate yourself. You start dying slowly when you kill your self-esteem; when you do not let others help you. You start dying slowly if you become a slave to your habits, walking everyday on the same paths…if you do not change your routine, if you do not wear different colors or you do not speak to those you don’t know. You start dying slowly if you avoid feeling passion and their turbulent emotions; those which make your eyes glisten and your heart beat fast. You start dying slowly... read more

Are You Celebrating Anything Special?

I called to make brunch reservations for Joe and myself on the Hornblower sight seeing ship cruising San Diego Harbor. After taking the necessary information the young attendant asked me, “Are you celebrating anything special?” I answered,  “I’m enjoying excellent health. I have a loving husband, wonderful family, loyal and fun friends. And we’re going on a wonderful cruise, on a state of the art ship to view a spectacular skyline of San Diego. Hell, yes, I’m celebrating something special.” Our reservation clerk continued, “Would you like to upgrade to a Celebration Package for another $20.00 per ticket?” So with that, Joe and I are celebrating with unlimited cheap champagne and guaranteed window seating! Each and every day cannot bring total happiness. That’s impossible! With that expectation we can be disappointed leading to a life of unhappiness. We will have troubles, doubts and frustration. But we can always find enough joy to piece together a “cause for celebration”. Every day may not be a designated “special occasion” with a birthday or anniversary but each day is special.  It’s our task to find the special, celebrate the special and share the good times. I think two things will help put us on the road to “celebration”: gratitude and finding joy in the small things in life. Don’t let the small everyday things we take for granted go uncelebrated! Finding the joy in small episodes of the ordinary will lead to small bursts of happiness. These moments of appreciating the small things will create a life worth celebrating.  Maybe everyday isn’t special, but there is something special in every day! And... read more

Is Love That Splendid a Thing All the Time?

We are all called to love our neighbor. We go out of our way to care for others providing for their needs and desires. Thinking of this “ideal” definition of love, I had to pause and reflect when I read this definition: Love is that you “want to kill someone”, then you realize that you would really, really miss them! Are we really that bad? Could we be? We would like to think of ourselves as “loving persons”, shunning away from the thought that we sometimes harbor normal human feelings such as envy, anger, impatience and intolerance. We turn away from looking into the reality mirror acknowledging unfinished business and our need for change, which at times may just seem too much for us. We don’t want to think of ourselves as people capable of misdeeds. Sometimes a tiny voice inside us will call out insistently, “Something’s not right! Better take a look!” We get scared, so we whistle in the dark or turn on the television, or pick up the phone, or shop till we drop to drown out that little voice. Sadly sometimes we succeed for years or even a lifetime in drowning out that little voice never knowing ourselves and never filling out the wonderful image that God dreamed for us on the day we were born. There is much good in us to rejoice over and much unfinished in us to weep over. But there is nothing in us to fear – except the blindness which fear makes us choose. That blindness strangles life, stunts growth and kills God’s wonderful dreams for us. We can... read more

Are You Losing Your Eyesight?

A blind person asked St. Anthony “Can there be anything worse that losing your eyesight?  He replied, “Yes, losing your vision!” We all can get sidetracked so easily. And maintaining vision is essential! As the principal of an elementary school, I thought of myself as the “gatekeeper” and the “keeper of the vision”.  I constantly reminded teachers, students, boards and parents of our final goal.  We had to keep the end, our priority, in sight in order not to get detoured by the “latest and greatest” diversion along the way. So too, in our lives we must keep forging ahead to our goal of love and happiness, fighting the urge to wander aimlessly in the negativity that oftentimes surrounds us. It’s easy to lose sight of our destiny and seek out a day-to-day existence by merely putting in our time, pulling us away from our “reason” on earth. Here are three ideas to maximize your time keeping that “vision” in front of you, no matter where life tries to drag you!  Affirmations:  Have personal affirmations ready to “recite” each day to keep you steady in your resolve. When stress or worry invades my mind, I reinforce my feeling of well-being with this affirmation: “An avalanche of abundance is pouring down on me, under grace and in the perfect time.” When I mentally recite this, I not only reaffirm my abundance but a wealth of feelings of gratitude spring up within with the worry draining out of my heart. Readings:  Make it part of your daily routine to take a few quiet minutes to read motivational content, books, blogs, etc. that... read more

You Are Not Alone

Although we come into this world alone and leave alone, we do not live alone. I believe that angels are always surround us. They walk beside us each day. To me that is a very comforting thought. Angels are around us all the time, in the very air we breathe. They lead us to our destiny, they protect us from our enemies and they console us in troubled times. We are wrapped in their love and light, whether we realize it or not. Angels, coming from a multidimensional field are beings of light, neither male or female; rather they are both and more. As humans, we tend to think of them as “us” so we can more easily identify with them. But unlike us, they can appear in many forms, but they are ultimately formless. Angels stem from that point of creation that is eternal, pure light and love.  Angels can be our bridge, between what we see and feel physically, and what we can see and feel spiritually. And we need them! It’s comforting to know that each of us has a special angel dedicated to our personal protection, our guardian angel. I remember learning the prayer to my guardian angel as a child: “Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here. Ever this day be at my side to light, to guard, to rule and guide. Amen” Angels are as active in our daily lives as we invite them to be. Since we have a free will, angels wait for our requests to intervene helping with almost anything. But we must ask! Angels quietly go... read more

Life’s An Adventure Don’t Forget Your Attitude

What attitude do you bring to each day? Do you drown your mind in judgment, finding faults with others and yourself? Or do you brighten your day with the attitude of “anticipating miracles”? You can wake up each day recounting the difficulty you have with parts of your body that no longer work, or you can get out of bed thankful for the ones that do. This invisible attitude, even before we rise, is very important as we unwrap the gift of each day.  Choose to be a Miracle Seeker! Miracle Seekers naturally add anticipation to their days. Their minds and their hearts have to be in the “ready position” for whatever may happen. Miracle Seekers adopt an attitude of positive intent: they want to see, expect to see, and intend to see everything working for the highest good during the day. Even small mundane tasks can be turned into positive activities with your attitude. Put some “positive spin”on it. Instead of thinking that “I have to go to the grocery store”, think “I GET to go to the grocery store.” When approaching simple tasks this way, it also calls to mind other blessings that you have:  the money to buy groceries, a wonderful family to feed and living in a country where food is readily available. With this habit of anticipation, Miracle Seekers strive to remain grateful as the day unfolds bringing pleasant and not so pleasant situations. No matter what happens though, they try to find the silver lining, knowing that everything works out for the best. Eventually. Our loving, heavenly Father would only send you the best. Nothing is... read more

Seven Wonders of the World

While gathering the votes the teacher noted that one student had not finished her paper yet. So she asked the girl if she was having trouble with her list. The girl replied, “Yes, a little. I couldn’t quite make up my mind because there were so many.” The teacher said, “Well, tell us what you have and maybe we can help.” The girl hesitated, then read: “I think the ‘Seven Wonders of the World’ are: 1. To see. 2. To hear. 3. To touch. 4. To taste. 5. To feel. 6. To laugh. 7. And to love. The room was so quiet you could have heard a pin drop. The things we overlook as simple and ordinary that we take for granted are truly wondrous! It is so easy for us to slip into taking people, circumstances or even the next breath as a “given”. We assume that our health, jobs and lives will always be there for us. We get so bogged down, reliant on the status quo of our faculties, that we overlook even the simplest of gifts such as touch, taste and feel. The most precious things in life cannot be built by hand or bought by man. Just look at nature – the brightness of a rose, the symmetry of a daisy, the grandeur of the Grand Canyon, the grasp of a baby’s small hand, the loyalty of a pet or the harmony of a symphony. Maintain your sense of gratitude at each turn of your day recognizing the wonder in each event. Many times our expectations get in our way. We expect things to... read more

Two Saddest Words

Wondering if there would be golf in heaven, two friends who were ardent golfers made an agreement that whoever died first would  bring back the news. Eventually one did pass on, and keeping his promise came back and reported, “ I have good news and bad news,” he said. “The good news is there are superb courses in heaven. The bad news is you’re next on the tee.” This old golf joke reminds us of our good news and bad news. The good news is that God is merciful and forgiving. The bad news:  the clock is ticking and our time is limited. We have limited time to become good husbands and wives to our spouses. We have limited time to become the good parents our children need. We have limited time to become the good friends that so many people need us to be for them. We have a limited time to grow into the people God always hoped we would be. Even limited time is lots of time, and eventually it is no time at all. Should that frighten us? Indeed it should because we may be destroying our marriages, our children, our friendships and our lives – without even noticing. Not intentionally, but simple day to day neglect, by not getting around to seeing our gifts, wanting to do something for someone and never getting around to it and intending to change and never doing it….time’s up! The two words, “Too Late”, is a bitter phrase that we all have to consider. We cannot change the past but we can take hold of the future and... read more

Milestones

Birthdays, anniversaries, 16 years old, 21 years old and 65 years old – all act as milestones of important events as we journey down this road of life. Each of these special junctures is observed with joy and special celebrations.  But what about our spiritual journey? What are the milestones along that developmental road? How do we know that we are making progress in our spiritual lives? One sign of spiritual growth is a shift in our thinking. When something happens to us instead of asking, “Why is this happening to me,” we look at it from another point of view asking, “What am I suppose to learn here?” We move from a self-centered plan of life to one that God has designed for us. We put aside our wants to what God intends. We move from Darkness to Light– We can be wandering  aimlessly in the dark, unaware of our true purpose on this earth wondering how/why this hardship came to me. We must turn to the light of acceptance and awareness of God’s plan in our lives – no matter what that is. We move from victim to warrior– We grow from seeing ourselves as a suffering victim of circumstances, to a warrior ready to battle whatever dark force may be at work. We give the control button to God, accepting his Plan rather than our own. (Isn’t that what we pray in the Our Father  – “Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”) We loosen our grip on the circumstances of life and give way to the flow of life. We can believe and live... read more