Faith, Hope, & Love

Life, faith, surviving depression, Soulmates, relationships


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Centering our Emotions

Day 3

 

Welcome to a new day! Today we tackle our emotions and how to stay centered and balanced. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to balance our emotions and the drama of our lives. Not only do we have to deal with how we feel on a minute by minute basis, but we also have people shoving their feelings in our faces and asking us to join their personal dramas. For people who are highly empathic this is a greater challenge in keeping their lives balanced emotionally.

 

So how do you go about being centered emotionally? When I recognized this as a problem for myself I spent some time meditating and turning inward analyzing everything I was feeling. I would ask myself, “Is this me or not?” This is a good question, sometimes you can pick up the feelings of people around you. When I was initially doing this the last US presidential election was going on and it seemed that everyone was angry or fearful. I was finding that I would be angry without a reason or would experience a moment of fright. So, knowing what is you and what is other is important to balancing our emotions.

 

Another emotion that is hard to balance is love. Now there are many kinds of love – unconditional, infatuation/lust, and brotherly love. This is why people become distracted, regular commitments take a back seat to the immediate, and focus deteriorates. When you find your heart leading your head this is a red flag to take a step back for a moment and analyse the feeling. But more important. Understand the difference between the kinds of love and maybe take a break from the relationship to decide what you are really feeling before you get trapped in something you really don’t want.

The meditation Scripture I want to invite you to dwell on today is 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” (NIV) This describes unconditional/agape/real love. The kind we all really crave. Keep in mind many people can imitate this kind of love but it can never last unless it becomes their actual lifestyle. This is why it is so important to know this kind of love intimately so you don’t get trapped by something else.   

  

    

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Centering means Self Examination

Day 2

 

One of the first things you need to do to get yourself centered is to do an internal examination of yourself. This is not something for the faint of heart. This takes being brutally honest with yourself. Many, including myself, have been running full speed ahead without considering if what we are doing is really something we want or believe in. For instance, I was raised to consider everyone else’s needs before my own. This bled down into decisions about career, family, even what I should believe faith wise. To be honest, I don’t think anyone really escapes the pressure of family expectation. I really didn’t start taking a look at or begin thinking about what I really wanted for myself until I turned the big 4-0. Hindsight is so 20/20! I had lived most of my life hating my life, just surviving another day. No real joy. Just waiting around until God called me home. That is not living!

 

So, at the time I really didn’t understand self examination or centering. Mostly, I decided it was time to discover what I really wanted for myself.  Music is my heart and I realized that there were artists I hadn’t heard, songs that weren’t so much not allowed as really disliked by someone else. Most of that was because my mother didn’t like it, or didn’t want to hear it. So, I spent some time listening to music I had not been allowed or aware of growing up. Another thing I looked at was my working career, what did I like about my long time career in travel, and what I didn’t like. It wasn’t until I had reconnected with an old friend that I started to think about what I believed, questioning and studying; not just what I believed but other philosophies. Something I discovered with that was that you really need to go outside your belief system for a more unbiased opinion when examining something so politically touchy. So be careful who you share your spiritual journey with, not everyone will be supportive.

Final word for today. Start your journey with awe, and wonder – don’t settle, and don’t let fear keep you from looking.
Let me leave you with this verse from Proverbs 22:6 (NIV) “Start(train-KJV) children (also can mean anyone new to the one in-charge – such as employee) off on the way (morals, how things are done) they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” For me I think this has a lot to do with recognizing someone’s strengths and weaknesses and giving them confidence to stand alone. I also think that as you meditate on this verse that the child should be the focus, not what you desire them to be. We are all individuals and even the young should be encouraged in their uniqueness.


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Centering is NOT Selfish

Day 1

 

This day and everyday is a new beginning, and to begin new you need a little information to move forward with purpose. I don’t mean information about things outside yourself, I’m talking about knowing yourself so well that you are able to make decisions that are inline with who you are. Not just big decisions, but little ones – what to wear, what to eat, how you will fill your day.

 

Centering means looking inside and seeing all that you are, knowing what you believe about life, your desires, what makes you happy; and, being brave enough to look at what we don’t like about ourselves and accept that piece with love and compassion. Recognizing there are things that need to be changed, and being willing to start working on them.

 

As you walk through your day be kind to yourself, spend time discovering something new about who you are. Remember and meditate on Psalm 139:14, “I praise you(God) because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” In this verse fearfully means to inspire reverence or godly fear or awe and wonderfully means to be distinct, be separated, be distinguished, or unique. You are special, and unique and well worth knowing.

 


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Daily Prompt – Blanket 

Why is it that the more you know, the more you understand, the more we suffer sorrow and grief. I think part of it is that the more we understand and objectively look at the world the more we realize that suffering isn’t necessary. So many things cause suffering, but I think the biggest is greed. If more people were able to overcome greed the more suffering would be a thing of the past. Compassion would become a comforting blanket to the hurting.  


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What God has Shown You

If you believe in God, or a higher power – what has your experience shown you? Faith is a very personal individual experience. It is not and should not be based on what you have learned from someone else. Yes, look at the scriptures your individual faith has, and ask yourself – is this true of my experience? When you listen to someone else teach – has this been proven true for me as well? Psalm 48:3 – God is in her citadels; he has shown himself to be her fortress. Investigate for yourself – what God has shown you.

Lord God, help everyone discover you for themselves who you are. Help them to hear you and not the opinion of someone else who thinks they know better. Amen.


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Daily Prompt – Avid

Read, read, read! All I want to do is read! This is somewhat of a montra for me. Reading has been a much loved pasttime for me since I learned. Taking me to far away places and times. Stories, how tos, philosophy, so much to choose from. Escape, broadening my mind, touching my heart spiritually and emotionally. This love skipped a generation, my kids are not so taken; but, alas, my granddaughter has taken up the thirst for adventure that can only be had with the discovery of the written word. 

For everyone who has this illness I hope it neve r goes away. Be avid readers and pass this desire on to a new generation whenever possible.

Blessings on your ventures.


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Daily Prompt – Harmony 

16Live in harmony with one another. (Romans 12:16)


I believe that harmony is a desire of many people, to live in peace and harmony with those around them. How do we attain this harmony? Is harmony an attitude like gratitude or is it something that happens like magic in rare moments? 


There is a way to achieve harmony, but to attain true harmony we have to look at ourselves, our personal, and extended worlds. True harmony is the ability to bring all things together to work for a common goal or a common good.  Like a musical chord that takes different notes and joins them together to make a single voice, so is harmony. 

Many years ago I was in a Sunday School class where our group premise was that “you can’t help someone until you help/heal yourself.” This is true for living a life of harmony as well.  Until you bring all yourself into harmony you can’t bring harmony to what is around you, whether that be for your family or beyond. 

So, how do we get the orchestra that is our body, mind, soul, and spirit to work together and in harmony? We must look within. Take care of all the facets of our lives. 

As for my last question, is harmony an attitude or magic? I think that harmony is both. It is a decision to make your life balanced and healthy; and, when all things come together in balanced harmony it feels like magic, giving great joy. It is these moments that we show those around us that harmony is possible. 

May Harmony fill your days.