Sunday, August 7, 2011

In Search of...a Sunday sermon

It seems like this is a season of tough times for most people I know. Instead of "no news being good news," it feels as if there's bad news, then more bad news, and then some more bad news piled on top of that, higher than we can see a horizon beyond, and engulfing us past the point in which we can stay afloat.

No, I don't mean to bum you out first thing in the morning. It's just that ignoring the obvious has gotten us to this place, and if we are to get past it, we have to at least acknowledge where we are with honesty.

One of the greatest truths ever spoken is Gandhi's "You must be the change you wish to see in the world," and it is that profound idea that I keep coming back to when my heap o' troubles gets to be too much. Yes, people, the changes we want to see in our lives and in our world begin and end solely with us.

This is a tough thing to hear, because we are much more comfortable asking God or someone else to solve our problems or give us a magic pill. Doesn't it seem so much easier to ask God to solve our obesity issue than to eat healthfully and exercise? I mean, who wants to do that?!

And so I've taken to asking myself, "Who would I need to be to have the kind of life I want?" And "What qualities would I need to possess to get there?" If there is something worthy of asking for, I believe it lies in us doing the changing and cultivating of our finer qualities to make something better in the world, even if it's just our own lives.

To that end, yesterday, whilst having what I believed to be a much deserved pity party, I asked myself what I needed to get out of my funk, and it dawned on me that I truly needed someone to ask me how I was doing and mean it. It sounds simple and stupid, but we ask each other how we are as a matter of politeness, and we answer "fine" unconsciously, with just as much politeness, even when that couldn't be further from the truth.

So today I'm proposing that we be the change we wish to see in the world and start by offering those things we could really use ourselves.

Let's stop and take a moment to be present when we ask someone how they are, and truly wait and listen to their answer.

Let's be compassionate listeners, without judgement, advice, or condemnation.

Let's make someone else feel heard, understood, loved. That is the greatest thing we as human beings seek.

Let's try going about our day as if everything we did and said matters...because it does.

Let's take a moment to remember someone we loved who has transitioned into their next dimension and left their earthly bodies. Let's stop, take a breath, and a moment to celebrate the gift they were to our lives. Then let's take a moment to hold someone who is still here in prayer, and lift them up with thoughts of love and appreciation and prayers for blessings to chase them down in ways that will delight and transform them. Is that not what we would want someone to do for us? I know I would.

Let's give someone the gift of our love and release. Let's surrender to the power (I call God) that would only have things turn out for everyone's highest good.

Let's release ourselves from the bondage of fear and control for the benefits of faith and redemption.

Let's agree to call on ourselves, even when it is inconvenient, to be the voice for someone else who doesn't have one.

Let's start a day with a moment of silence, where instead of putting forth frenzy and strife, we breathe in peace and tranquility and solitude for just a moment so that we have some of it for ourselves to bring to the world as we go about our day.

Yes, these are the things I need. And so I recognize that I can't have that which I am unwilling to give to someone else. So it is my prayer today that I can do and be all that I just said. As a declaration of faith that this is so, I say aloud, "And so it is."

Peace and Blessings to you.
With immense gratitude that you stopped by,

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