Your Monday Muse: Positive Planning for Peace!

Positivity The first step, we are advised in The Daily Word, is to surround ourselves with Positive People. It seems simple and a small thing. But it is true that if you have been surrounded by nabobs of negativity, there will be a definite change in your positivity outlook. Positivity can be infectious. And it doesn’t have to be of the Pollyanna-ish nature where you simply think happy thoughts and feel that all things will always turn out for the best in this best of all possible worlds. Positive thinking and positive planning are the outward signs of inward grace in most cases. The blessings we have in our life are not always those that we see in an obvious and material way. If we have been blessed with good friends in life, and have had opportunities to meet wonderful people, then we have something to be thankful for. And we have seen from past weeks that when opportunities are open and we can keep an open mind to the possibilities that exist in our life, we can feel gratitude. Optimism is a gift. Positivity is something we can adopt in our attitude over a period of time and planning. Positivity is an outlook. When we want to be forward thinking in this world, we can begin with positive planning in our life! Compassion Compassion is another gift we can give to others. And it is something to be cultivated and learned at times. Some of us are born with a compassionate nature, but compassion is something that we can adapt and promote each day. How we react to others can teach us and open a window into our souls. When we practice empathy, it will help to heal divisions and anger that we see around us each day. And when we have compassion for those who seem out of control and are hurting themselves, we can understand and use this as a teaching moment. We can talk with those we love about ways to avoid lashing out and also finding ways to help rather than simply ways to condemn. Compassion can be the ultimate in teachable moments! Peace in the World We have often heard of a running cliché about wanting to find “World Peace.” It seems to be this elusive talking point that we have said by rote is a much desired goal, but we know it’s not a real ‘thing.’  But when we have a spiritual base in our hearts and in our souls, then we can aspire to find peace. Inner peace is the starting point we can use to achieve the elusive goal of finding peace in the outer world. We can, as they say, become part of the solution rather than just being another part of the problem. Each day, when we feed our soul with a positive outlook for facing challenges and problems, when we practice compassion for ourselves as well as others, then we are beginning to see a path for peace in our own time. The key to all this, of course, is love. Jesus told us this simple truth.  He actually whispered the answers to the test in our ear. In past weeks we have talked about opening the door to possibilities.  The possibilities include actively working for peace in our lives and in our world.  We are called upon to look for a path of salvation for ourselves and for an outer world that cries at times for the simple solutions we have been given. The answer to peace in our time is laid before us. We can choose love each day. Bible Verse: As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience- Colossians 3:12 Mantra: I will choose to create a positive outlook in my life that will assist me over hurdles and challenges each day. And I will choose to show compassion, for myself and for others in my life each day. And finally, I will work to cultivate the inner peace that we have been striving for in The Growing Group. By feeding my soul with a positive outlook, and showing compassion, I am working towards peace in my life and in my lifetime. Love is the key to unlock the door each day.

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Monday Muse: Acceptance & Renewal for Easter!

Totality Reverend Eric Butterworth, Unity minister and author, speaks of the totality of life as being all of life-the ‘whole of things.’ We live in the present, the now of life that is all together. Remember that Beatles song: All Together Now? That’s the best way I can think of to contemplate the happy thought of a unified world. Rev. Butterworth tells us not to think in terms of separation, absence, and doing ‘all sorts of magical things that you think are going to cause something out here to come into you.’ “Be still and know that I am” tells us that God is present all around us and within us. And within our Spirit lies the divine spark.  If we can allow the spirit to express itself, we can relax and know that it will hear us, guide us and direct our lives to unfold according to divine order. Acceptance It is hard to do what we speak of with Reverend Butterworth! Just relaxing and allowing the divine order to come to us is difficult. It’s hard to accept our lives sometimes. We were brought up to believe acceptance of our fate is a very passive posture that brings with it the notion that we have failed. Yet when we acknowledge the reality of our lives, we can say yes and open the door to our hearts and our spirits that will allow new ideas and new wisdom to enter into our lives. It is argued that active acceptance really does require not just incredible faith but strength of character.  To have a loving acceptance in all aspects, in the totality of our lives, it then allows for the divine presence of God’s everlasting love. We can use that love to pay it forward in our own thoughts and words and actions. We accept God’s presence in the totality of our lives. Renewal That is the word of the day when we think of Easter Sunday. We think of renewals and endless possibilities in our own lives. “The old is gone. The new is yet to be. With Steadfast faith, I rest, knowing that my Spirit is being renewed” These are the words of a young woman minister from South Florida, Reverend Elizabeth Longo. Reverend Longo speaks of reveling in the process where her body, mind and soul are being renewed-resurrected from the tomb of self-pity. And then delighting in the creation that is unfolding. We can think of endless possibilities in the totality of our lives when we not only accept God’s presence, but begin to renew our own souls and revive our spirits daily. We can then begin feasting on the word and living with the promise before us. That is the promise that we gain from celebrating Easter and the new beginnings we seek. Mantra This week I will be still and Know that I am in the presence of a divine spirit. When I accept the possibilities before me by opening up my heart and soul to God’s love and presence, I will begin to renew my own spirit and revive that spark that I had as a Child of God. Bible Verse …The Mystery hidden for ages and generations….which is Christ in you, the hope of glory”- Colossians 1:26:27

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