Mary’s Example Of Faith And Trust - Christmas Eve

As a child, I recall Christmas Eve as one of the longest days ever! As an adult, I find this day filled with anticipation and excitement, for spiritually I know that tomorrow we commemorate the birth of Jesus my Lord. But today the birth is not my focus, rather, my focus turns to His mother, Mary. She was an unwed teenager from a small town in a desert who was asked the impossible; to trust so deeply in God when asked to bear God's son. I have no doubt that Mary's "yes" came with some hesitation and trepidation. And I'm sure she did not always have a pleasant time of it when dealing with her future husband, her family, and just the fact of being pregnant in general. Yet, through it all, Mary never gave up.

Jesus was born to this poor teenage girl in a stable in a small town in the far reaches of the Roman empire.  He was born to a girl who took a leap of faith and trusted in her God. She persevered, not knowing the outcome.  Onward she traveled, despite hardship and fear.

For me, Christmas is not only a time of celebration and…

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How To Be Caring With People Not Feeling The Holiday Joy

I don't think there is any other time of the year which evokes such strong emotions as does this time of the year. For some of us we are excited, joyous, filled with wonder and anticipation! We visit family and friends, host parties and gatherings, spreading joy everywhere we go! But yet there are some of us who feel quite the opposite this time of the year. I think of those who recently lost a loved one, suffering from physical or mental health issues, separated from loved ones, and even estranged from family. There are those who past experience of the holidays wasn’t pleasant, and those who feel trapped in life situations.

“It's the most wonderful time of the year!” While these song lyrics may be true for some, they’re not necessarily true for everyone. I'm not writing this to bring down the mood, for what I am saying is that we need to be mindful of people around us who may be suffering while we celebrate. Not all of my past holidays have been joyous, and I’m sure neither have yours. Some of my current clients are dreading these next few weeks, while other clients are looking forward to…

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Have A Positive Life Through Mindful Imagination

As I’ve grown older I realize that I’m not as creative as I was as a child. Whether that’s actually true or just my perception, it’s my current reality. Children have a sense of wonder about them, partly because many of their life experiences are new to them. I watch the reaction on the face of my granddaughter, not yet a year old, and I see the wonder and amazement as she experiences the word around her for the first time. I don’t remember ever being that age, but I do remember that as a child my imagination and creativity were awesome!

As children, we imagine ourselves as being any occupation, and even some made up super human people saving the world. Our desire to experience the world in all its fullness, and add to it, seem to wane in many of us as we age. I think the education system is partly to blame, but, realistically, I blame the economy. Why? Most of us need to find employment to survive, and many of the jobs are routine and mundane. Rare are those who gain employment wherein imagination is necessary. The rest of us simply live out our lives, as…

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Finding True Gratitude Through Mindfulness And Action

For as long as I can remember, November is a special month for me. Why? Well, autumn is in full swing and the holiday season is just around the corner! November is also a special month for me since it’s a time which inspires gratitude. During this month many of us take time from our busy lives to reflect on what, and whom, we are grateful.

The dictionary defines gratitude as “the quality of being thankful”. We recognize that in our lives there are things for which we are grateful, regardless of our life's’ circumstance. If we look hard enough, we will find something, at least that's what I’ve been told. A platitude to be sure, although in this platitude we find wisdom. Namely, if my perspective and goal is to find something for which to be thankful, I will find it. The opposite is true; the more I focus my perspective on the negatives in life the greater the belief that my life is completely negative.

Simply being thankful, or grateful, for the sake of being grateful, is not always altruistic. Can our sense of gratitude also be self-serving? Might it be a mask for our own narcissistic consumerism?…

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pursuit of inner peace

So many of us are seeking inner peace that the question of why inner peace is important comes to the forefront. Inner peace is a concept which I speak and write about quite frequently. For me, the pursuit of inner peace is more important and vital then the search for happiness or success. Happiness is nothing more but a fleeting emotion, and success can be taken from us just as easily as it can be gained. But true inner peace is permanent.

Inner peace is not just for those who dedicate their lives to prayer or spirituality. Inner peace is attainable regardless of our lifestyle or occupation. As I have previously written, inner peace can be found as we learn to mindfully view ourselves and the world around us.

I define inner peace as a state of emotional and mental peace without disturbing thoughts, and recognizing our control over our moods and reactions. It is essential for inner peace that we believe it’s possible and that we believe we are in control of our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Once we truly believe and acknowledge this, the foundation for inner peace has been built.

When one attains inner peace you find…

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