Tag Archive | Thanksgiving

God Help!

The recent election of the president of the United States hit me hard. In fact, I am still struggling with the outcome. I have not turned on the news. I have not listened to analysis reports. I have spent little time on social media. I am just not at acceptance yet because I am still in shock. And I think what shocks me more than electing a man of questionable character is knowing that millions of Americans chose hate and fear. Of course I am not naïve. I know hate has deep roots in this country, stemming as far back as the arrival of Christopher Columbus. And of course I know fear has been bred in this country from the beginning. But I honestly thought we, the United States of America, had made huge advances toward love, acceptance, inclusion and peace. Apparently not. Apparently there’s still lots of work to do and for me that work begins with a prayer.

God, Creator, Eternal One, Universal Spirit…

Help me!

Help me ease past the disgust, shock and sadness that has me stymied;

Help me move beyond the tears, fear and anger;

Help me remember that you are in control and what happened was sanctioned by you for a greater purpose that we know not today;

Help me remember that all is not lost, that the only way evil wins is if good people do nothing;

Give me the strength to move beyond the darkness and embrace a path that promotes all things that are “good, just, noble and right;”

Empower me with wisdom and courage, faith and hope to operate day-by-day with an open heart, an open mind and a love that surpasses hate;

Grant me peace with this outcome and above all I pray your special blessing on…

  • The white people in this country who understand our current condition is not survivable for any of us, and who are working tirelessly to end racism, sexism, colorism and white privilege;
  • All people who are poised to challenge the incoming administration by holding it accountable to the lofty ideas of our founding fathers;
  • All people who are dedicated to the attainment of civil and human rights as well as social justice for all people;
  • All people who are committed to the progress that has been made and will continue to be made;
  • Organizations and groups that are working to eradicate barriers (in all its many forms) so that all may enjoy the liberties and privileges guaranteed in our founding documents;
  • All people who understand that “none of us are free until we are all free.”

This prayer I ask in your name…Amen!

Now excuse me while I continue working on myself by listening to “Rise Up” by the talented Andra Day.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmHfo_3EGFA

Wisdoms for the Holidays

We are officially in that busy season when we cram Thanksgiving (in America), Christmas and New Year’s activities into a six-week period. And as if that wasn’t enough to make one’s head spin like Linda Blair in The Exorcist, add NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month – in which I’m participating) to the list and things just got real!

There was a time when even thinking about this would have stressed me out, making my shoulders, head and neck tighten like a corset. But I have finally adopted a few “wisdoms” that help me slide through this season with little to no stress. Here’s what I’ve incorporated into my life and if it helps anyone else, then all the better.

Keep priorities the priority. For me, my priorities are my family, my writing, my friends, my spiritual connectedness and my wellness (me time, physical time, reading time). And not necessarily in that order. When I encounter a request or situation that falls outside of one of my priorities, I politely but firmly offer regrets. This is not always easy to do until I think about sacrificing one of my priorities and then it suddenly becomes very easy.

I have finally embraced Oprah’s wisdom that “No” is a complete sentence. It needs no clarification, explanation or follow-up. It was hard embracing “no.” I didn’t like the guilt that came with no, especially when the request was something I could do or handle but just didn’t want to. Then I realized that guilt was tied to ego and ego cannot, should not lead; only the prompting from my soul (also known as gut or inner voice) should lead. So I learned to pray about most requests and listen for soul’s response. Once I had my answer, sometimes a no, I was fine. No more guilt.

Keep my schedule light. I was penciling in an event on my calendar and it dawned on me that I keep accepting the same invitations, following the same holiday routine, scheduling the same events. Why? I didn’t even enjoy half of them (people or events or routine). So I started scratching off and whittling down (and saying no — see the paragraph above) and boy, did that feel good. I challenge you to do the same. Look at your holiday commitments and erase those events or people (sounds harsh but not everyone is good for you) that no longer serve you or your priorities.

If you decide to apply these wisdoms this holiday season (or beyond), let me know. I’m curious to hear how they work for others. In the meantime, I wish everyone a stress-free, loving and joyous season with more than enough time to appreciate the beauty in every moment.

Happy Holidays

Thanksgiving Blessings – One by One

I’ve had some great challenges and unexpected roundabouts this year. So many shattering events in fact that it caused me on many occasions to question my deepest desire to be a full-time, self-employed, income-producing writer of fiction. With tears in my eyes, on my cheeks, soaking my clothes, I wondered if I should:

1)  continue to pursue my dream or

2)  release the dream.

Every time I faced that decision, the battle between fear and courage, ego and God raged, and at the end of the fight, God and courage always won out. Not because I am such a mighty saint (trust me when I tell you that God is still making me presentable), but because there was something deep inside me that recoiled at the thought of giving up. So after my crying jig and after coming to yet the same decision, I would hop right back on the dream-train and chug-a-lug a few more feet down the tracks. And lo and behold, at the next stop, I was always rewarded with a sign or confirmation from God that I was on the right track, that I was travelling closer and closer to my dream.

So as we approach the Thanksgiving season, I thought it the appropriate time to “count my blessings one by one.” I am sharing them with you because they don’t belong to me alone. They are yours too…if you choose to claim them. No pressure.

Thanksgiving Blessings – One by One

praying hands two

1.   Thank you God for sticking close to me even when I don’t feel your presence;

2.   Thank you God for steadying me when I feel off-kilter;

3.   Thank you God for breaking through my ego so you may impart wisdom and direction;

4.   Thank you God for keeping my spiritual and physical eyes, ears and mind open to                         messages and signs from you;

5.   Thank you God for purpose and the pursuit of it;

6.   Thank you God for giving me the courage to act even in fear;

7.   Thank you God for keeping me on the right track;

8.   Thank you God for my cheerleaders on the sidelines (father, mothers, siblings, cousins,     friends, associates, bosses, aunts, uncles, etc.) who also serve as earthly angels;

9.   Thank you God for allowing me to relax, knowing you have all in your control;

10. Thank you God for the creative ways you give encouragement, hope, love and so much more.