True Connection ✨

What is at the forefront of your mind and heart today? ❤️

Let’s dedicate this time to connecting within, receiving what we truly need. Is that wisdom for a particular situation? An answer to a deep seeded question? A need for deep refreshment and renewal? Physical or emotional healing? Take a moment to seek your true heart, your deepest longings. Connect deeply within and without, sensing a sweet embrace, an unconditional love like no other. “At the very moment I called out to you, you answered me! You strengthened me deep within my soul and breathed fresh courage into me” (Psalms 138:3 TPT). As Brennan Manning stated, “I have been seized by the power of a great affection.” Allow yourself to be seized by a great, Divine affection, our True Connection. Love is the secret password for every soul. ❤️


Leaning Into Darkness, lyrics by Macrina Wiederkehr and Velma Frye

Draw me into the depths.
Take me down to the holy darkness to Love’s roots.
I lean into that darkness,
The darkness that surrounds me,
This nurturing room for my restless spirit.

Let me borrow your eyes, Beloved.
Then I shall see in the dark, though for answers I do not look.
It is enough to wait,
To wait in the holy darkness,
This nurturing womb for Love’s yearning.

Listening to the sound of silence,
And leaning into the song of darkness, I wait for You.
Waiting with purpose for who I will become,
Waiting without agenda for things I can not change,
I become one with the One I love,

For I have seen too many stars,
Too many stars to let the darkness overwhelm me.

I keep vigil:
with my heart’s eternal questions, and with my deep longings.
with those places in my being where the light has grown dim.
with those whose hearts are tired, and with those whose hope is lost.
for those who sleep and for those who can not rest.
for those with fearful hearts, and for those whose hearts are angry.
for those whose courage is waning and for those whose strength is growing.
for those who suffer, and for those who keep vigil.

I keep vigil. I keep vigil. I keep vigil. I keep vigil,

For I have seen too many stars,
Too many stars to let the darkness overwhelm me.


“Sometimes, the road ahead is blocked, but clearing the way becomes part of our journey. Learn to tell when it’s time to let go, to surrender, to search for another road, a different path, another dream. But also learn to tell when it’s time to move forward, through obstacles if need be, because the dream is electric, charged by Divine energy and love.” ~ Melody Beattie, Journey to the Heart


“Playing it safe can lead to staleness and depression. You’ve asked for more happiness and definite direction. I’ve lit the flame of passion in your heart to lead and guide you. It’s safe for you to take risks and follow your heart’s desire. Ask me to be your partner along your path of passion, to guide and nurture you. When you feel a strong knowing-ness, alongside a burning passion, pay attention as this is my way of giving you information about your next step.” ~ Doreen Virtue


Altar Meditation

Imagine a beautiful body of water before you.

You begin to walk close to this refreshing, relaxing, healing place. It may be the ocean, a stream, a lake, or river. Hear its sounds and smell the fresh air around you. Soak in its awe and wonder. As you approach the shoreline, you notice a unique altar — it may be a large rock, a wood log, or a man made altar. Envision this sacred place.

You feel drawn to release something at the altar, something that is no longer serving you.

As you let go of what no longer serves, a beautifully wrapped gift appears on the altar with your name on it. You gently take hold of the gift, open it, and look inside.

What is it?

How does it make you feel?

A trusted Guide, a Spirit figure, softly appears before you and you speak to them about the gift.

With welcoming eyes and a receptive heart, accept their words of love.

I am always here for you.
I love you unconditionally.
You can come to Me at anytime, anywhere, dropping immediately into My Presence.
Treasure this gift created just for you.

Now, listen closely, and receive their words of wisdom for your situation or deep seeded question.

You express gratitude for their embracing Presence, and for the special gift.

Their wisdom directs your path.

You feel secure.

Your heart is encouraged and filled with love and hope. ❤️


May you continue to be seized by the power of a great affection. Love is the secret password for every soul. ✨


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The Best Version Of You 🌟

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique.” ~ Martha Graham

Are you aware of your actions as they are happening? Have you ever practiced being your own silent, compassionate witness — looking from the outside and observing your whole self? When we are open and honest with ourselves, and listen to the spirit of truth deep within, we receive genuine insight. In yoga, this is called SVADHYAYA, self study or self awareness. Observation and awareness are the first steps toward change. Pause between your breath, thoughts, feelings, and actions — listen and receive from them. Let yourself learn from each experience and receive compassionate insight. Be the best version of you! 🌟

If a situation keeps repeating itself, ask what can I learn? Instead of resisting or trying to power your way through challenges, consider a more compassionate approach and ask yourself these key questions for personal reflection and growth.

What lessons am I learning right now?
What do I need to say that has been unspoken?
What skills or talents am I not utilizing?
What signs have I been misinterpreting or ignoring?
How is life asking me to grow right now?
What have I been avoiding out of fear?
What part of me have I been afraid to express and show the world?
What do I really want or need?
How do I want to feel?
What am I committed to changing?

(Adapted from 10 Essential Questions To Ask When You Feel Stuck by Shannon Kaiser)

“One new perception,
One fresh thought,
One act of surrender,
One change of heart,
One leap of faith…
Can change your life forever.”
~ Robert Holden

Open 
Nothing to wall out
or hold in.
Open like the
wide sky at twilight.
Open as the ocean
or the reach of
the unknown.
Open as a heart
that chooses
not to close.
~ Danna Faulds


Remind yourself to practice compassionate self observation and self study in your daily living. Before retiring each night, ask yourself, “What did I learn today?” and be grateful for the insights. Be the best version of you. 🌟

“The best I have to bring, I’ll throw it all into the fire as the fragrance of my sacrifice ascends unto You. Pause in His presence.” ~ Psalms 66:15 The Passion Translation

 

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Thank You 🙏🏻

Remember to live out LOVE—an attitude of gratitude. Express your thanks. Give away love, encouragement, and acceptance. “So encourage each other and build each other up.” ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:11(NLT)
Who are you going to encourage today? 💛

✨Love ~ Serve ~ Inspire✨

Have you said thank you lately? by Amy Nichols

There’s someone you need to thank.

Some who believes in you.

Someone who listens to you.

Someone who puts up with you when you’re in your foulest mood.

Someone who doesn’t mind the little things. Someone who celebrates the big things.

Someone who opens doors for you, both physical and metaphorical.

Someone who gives you creative space. Someone who holds down the fort while you’re away.

Someone who inspires you. Someone who spurs you on to better and better.

Someone who believes in the impossible, too.

Maybe you’ve thanked this person before, but maybe it’s been a while since you’ve thanked them lately. Take a minute and thank them.

No, really. Take a minute and thank them. Yes, you’re busy and they’re busy and we’re all busy. But do it anyway. Don’t wait. You’ve waited long enough.

Tell them…

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Community (Kula) 🌎

As Mother Teresa stated, “The problem with the world is that we draw the circle of our family too small.” Our intention this week is to invite more interconnectedness and community (“kula” in Sanskrit) into our lives — expanding our circle — while staying rooted, grounded, and balanced. Yoga Sutra lll.24 (maitryadisu balani) describes that the cultivation of friendliness creates inner strength. Experiencing healthy compassion and lovingkindness toward ourselves and others strengthens our interconnectedness and sense of overall well-being.

Where and with whom in your life can you experience more interconnectedness, community (kula), friendliness, lovingkindness, and compassion?

Let’s learn some lessons about community and interconnectedness from nature. Visualize a flock of geese flying overhead in a “V” formation.

Fact 1: As each goose flaps its wings, it creates an “uplift” for the birds that follow. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone.
Lesson: People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

Fact 2: When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it.
Lesson: If we have as much sense as a goose, we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give our help to others.

Fact 3: When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another goose flies to the point position.
Lesson: It pays to take turns doing the difficult tasks and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each other’s skills, capabilities, and unique arrangements of gifts, talents, and resources.

Fact 4: The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep going!
Lesson: We need to make sure our “honking” is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement, the production is much greater. The power of encouragement, which is to listen to one’s own heart or core values, and to listen to the core values of others, is the quality of “honking” we seek.

Fact 5: When a goose gets sick, wounded, or shot down, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to help protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out with another formation of geese and try to catch up with the flock.
Lesson: If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult times, as well as when we are strong.

Who is in your “V” formation?

(The original version of Lessons from Geese was written by Dr. Robert McNeish in 1972.)

Visualize the neighborhood in which you live. Do you know the names of five of your neighbors? Do you know much about them? Let’s aim to go from stranger status to acquaintances to building relationships — community — kula — connection — all with friendliness, compassion, and lovingkindness. “You must love your friend in the same way you love yourself.” ~ Matthew 22:39 TPT

How do we build community and interconnectedness? 🌎
✭ Look for opportunities, be intentional — go the extra mile and take a risk!
✭ Eliminate personal “time suckers”— prioritize your time to create more availability in your day.
✭ Be willing to be interrupted, oftentimes these are Divine appointments and you and others will be blessed!
✭ Stay in a “V” formation — don’t fly solo!

Rise Up song lyrics by Andra Day

You’re broken down and tired
Of living life on a merry-go-round
And you can’t find the fighter
But I see it in you so we gonna walk it out
And move mountains
We gonna walk it out
And move mountains

And I’ll rise up
I’ll rise like the day
I’ll rise up
I’ll rise unafraid
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
And I’ll rise up
High like the waves
I’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
For you

When the silence isn’t quiet
And it feels like it’s getting hard to breathe
And I know you feel like dying
But I promise we’ll take the world to it’s feet
And move mountains
Bring it to it’s feet
And move mountains
And I’ll rise up
I’ll rise like the day
I’ll rise up
I’ll rise unafraid
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
For you

All we need, all we need is hope
And for that we have each other
And for that we have each other
We will rise
We will rise
We’ll rise, oh oh
We’ll rise

I’ll rise up
Rise like the day
I’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
I will rise a thousand times again
And we’ll rise up
High like the waves
We’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
We’ll rise up
And we’ll do it a thousand times again
For you oh oh oh oh oh

“It’s funny how, in this journey of life, even though we may begin at different times and places, our paths cross with others so that we may share our love, compassion, observations, and hope.” ~ Steve Maraboli

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Inhale the BEST, Exhale the Stress!

A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: “How heavy is this glass of water?” Answers called out ranged from 8oz to 20oz. She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.” She continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed–incapable of doing anything.” It’s important to remember to let go of your stresses…don’t carry them long…remember to put the glass down!  Source: Science is Madness

When we slow down and pay attention to how we are experiencing our lives, we are more likely to make wise decisions and act from a centered and calm place. When our intentions arise from such a place, we create less stress and more harmony in our lives and the lives of those around us.

What is a stress or worry you can let go of today? Through observation and awareness we learn to be more calmly responsive and less emotionally reactive.

“Pour out all your worries and stress upon Him and leave them there, for He always tenderly cares for you.” ~ 1 Peter 5:7 TPT


How do you deal with stress & strong emotions? How do you discharge the energy? There are 3 general ways…
1. Numbing: alcohol/drugs, food, sex, shopping, gambling, technology/screen time, anything excessive
2. Lashing Out: expressions of anger, aggression…physically, emotionally, verbally…especially to those we love & trust the most
3. Lashing In: negative internal dialogue, self pity or blame, depression/anxiety…Anxiety is owning a crisis before it arrives & focuses on the improbable. Do not worry about your life.

What’s your “go-to” emotional release?
Honestly listen to the story you are telling yourself.
Receive it without blaming, shaming or judging.
Let it filter through the soft gaze of awareness & grace.
Change can only come through observation & awareness.

What are some healthy stress management techniques that work for you?
Choose one or two that come to mind and incorporate them into your life this week. Remember to put the glass down!

~ Let’s turn our pain & sadness into compassion.

~ Our anger & aggression into motivation; aggression is often stuck energy wanting to move forward.

~ Our anxiety & worry into healthy concern which focuses on the probable and produces positive action.

~ And turn our apathy & unfocused thinking into passion & purpose.


Burn the Rope: by Danna Faulds

Burn the rope of
past conditioning,
or slice right
through, awareness
like a blade that
cannot be stopped
by any obstacle.
Without the history
of who you’ve
been, what is the
essence of your
soul’s expression?
When you allow
the moment to
offer up its perfect
response, what is
the free and true
experience of you?