Tag Archives: inspiration

My God Does Not Hold Back

candles

Compline service: ending the day- saying good night in a peaceful and contemplative way. I love this type of service and my mom suggested we attend Sunday night in Savannah, GA. The church was small, painted white, and smelled of a comfortable old book. The candles were lit, shimmering low in the soft shadowy  darkness. My thoughts relaxed as did my body. Sharing this quiet moment with my mother was like a warm hug.

The pastor/rector/preacher (not sure of his title) spoke to orient the group. We were  left to enjoy the choir chants and brief prayers. As the singing ended, the leader spoke words that broke my peace. The words surrounded the story of Paul – and the story was told to express how God loves us no matter what. That this  love is undividable by time, space or circumstances. EXCEPT THERE IS A CATCH: There is a small print disclaimer-he noted that this complete and unchecked love is granted to those who have found God through Jesus Christ. This love is not given to those who  follow  God but don’t feel the need to go through a third party to connect. It is AVAILABLE to all IF you want to go through Jesus. In this man’s universe, there is a line between complete love and everything else and unless you have Jesus on your side of the line, love will be lacking. No thanks.

I’ll stick with my higher power, my connection to the universe and its unwavering love and support. I would not want the brand of God (higher power) love that is conditional. Why create a hurdle to nirvana? Who made this hurdle? Why would it exist? How can you contain or control something that is that utterly powerful, clean and universal?  It is like trying to handle the sun or make time stand still.

I respect those who feel the love of Jesus Christ and value the guidance he offers. I would never want to get in the way of a belief system  that is meant to make a person better for themselves and for others.

I thought about being off put (and at first I was- I will admit) then realized  my own beliefs are importantly held  and may seem foreign to others. Don’t I ask others to give me room?  I was at an away game- the leader was expressing the values of the people who choose to congregate there day in and day out.

The whole experience became a check point reminder for me to live and let live, to embrace our differences because this promotes thought and interest. At the end of the day (and time), we all want the same thing: True and undivided love and acceptance. Many roads- one ending. I’ll see you there, even if we don’t travel the same road.

Hugs and love

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I guess I’m a B*tch

You know the moment when you say something and you can feel the energy shift? Either you KNOW you said something and it came out wrong or you DON’T know exactly what you said but you know it was received poorly? Either way, there is that energy shift and that sudden awareness of pain you inflicted.

I get that sometimes. Which means I do that too often. Which means I am a b*tch. Or so I have been told in not so many words by my mother.

I made an apology to my mother (who I love). I knew something I said made her mad but I truly had no idea what it was. She clammed up in the middle of our conversation and gave me the cool shoulder (not too hard) the rest of the night. The next morning I found quiet time and let her know that I was aware that something I said upset her. That I was sorry for upsetting her and that I would never, ever want to make her sad or mad or cry. She let me know that even though I am a sweet and good person, I can be a cutting b*tch sometimes. That I am just “like that” and she has learned to live with it and accept that this is just a part of me. So instead of getting into it the night before, she chose to work around it and hold it all inside.

I went through a shift during that conversation. I chose to hear her words, get them inside of my skin and own them instead of blaming her for being too sensitive or not hearing me correctly. I didn’t defend but instead I wore her assessment to see how it fit. For the first time, I faced head on that well, yeah,  I CAN be a b*tch and I do need to pay more attention to that side of myself.

I have decided to concentrate on two things. These will be my personal growth goals for 2016 and beyond.

  1. Awareness in advance. I am now slowing down and taking care to be as aware as possible to the conversation, who I am speaking with, and my tone/language/body language. I am holding off on comments until I am sure that whatever comes out of my mouth or body is appropriate to the situation and will not cause pain.
  2. Accepting and acknowledging when I fail at #1. Owning up as quickly as possible to the fact that I spoke or acted in error and making amends, if possible, so that my friends and family will not be left in a wake of negative feelings.

For me, #2 is harder than #1. I have practiced #2 many times this year which brought me to the conversation with my mom. I could not even begin to work on #1 without owning up to my actions in the first place. I try really hard to be a good soul. I am constantly evolving and growing and listening to my intuition. My mom did me the favor of cutting to the chase and raising my awareness to an area of personal growth that needs my attention the most. Thanks, Mom for calling me a b*tch :-).

 

Oil Painting Inspiration – L’dor Vador – 2nd painting

Tuesday night was a make-up session in art class. Painters in the Tuesday night group are a lively bunch. A little wine, Pavarotti and life stories mix with the paints.  There is a gentleman who does some freaking amazing work on Tuesday night. Amazing. His son started class the night I was there. Cute kid, college grad, on the way to med school. Their sharing of art class could go so well or so wrong and I was drawn to the thought about how hard it could be to share space with a loved one.

In this art space, the father’s talent could be intimidating to the son.”Living in the shadow” type thing. The father could wish more for the son than the son has to offer in talent or desire. It would be easy for the father lion to dominate and domineer.

Allowing a loved one space, personal vision, and autonomy can be hard. You want the best for them. You want to push them to their full potential and at the same time make it easier than the way it went for you. Shortcuts, efficiency, no pain.

Life is about the bumps and cuts and bruises gained in the living process. You never really feel something without getting your hands dirty. To save the troubles, tribulations and mess ups weakens the backbone.

The balance is assisting, showing, sharing and teaching while at the same time understanding that the other’s approach won’t be like yours- it is through a different lens. They have a different vision and a different style. It is beautiful in its own way.  It’s not the anti-way (my mom will get this statement) but rather the unique expression of their history folding into present/future.

Having a child, I live out the fact that this is a hard feat to accomplish. I know I mess it up all the time and for that, I’m sorry. I give myself grace and allow that awareness is what is important.  There is no manual. I had two great teachers (yes, they got it mixed up sometimes too). Through their efforts to let me/make me learn by trial and error-and stand by me through it all- I feel firsthand what it is like to be given that wide berth which in turn allows me to pass that down in hopes that it will be understood, honored and carried forward through yet another generation.

L’dor Vador.

bird 5-26-15

Oil Painting Inspiration – a judge free week

This is my 2nd painting and now I’m judgy. Nothing was expected of me on painting #1 (The Pear), from my teachers or myself. I had the freedom to just go with it and try my hardest. The very fact that I COULD do it was enough.

Painting #2 rolls around and so does JUDGMENT. I have just enough knowledge of the process to start setting minimum standards. I have a bar, a measure of my previous work and so I tell myself this one has to be as good or better as the first. Oy, the PRESSURE. Why do I judge myself and apply pressure? This is one activity that takes me out of my head and into creative. And here I go jumping right back into reality – with pedal to the metal no less!

Judgment comes in many flavors from the  “I am not good enough because —— ,   I will never be able to do that because ——, “  to the  “That person is more — than me and I am inferior to them because —–”  or  “Wow, they really are strange because that is not like my life experience or me.”

I lean toward the “I know I am capable and challenge myself to go further, add more, perform at a higher level, no going back- I’m not doing enough otherwise” kind of judgment. How limiting.

When we drop judgment we open up to new possibilities and full potential. We let go of control and outcomes based on what we have known to date.

Goal for the week

Actively approach the person or situation that I have experienced before with the following thought:

“I am going to see this situation/person for what it is and not jump to an outcome based on previous experience. That was yesterday and I am open to the concept that today’s experience could be very different.”

Two phrases come to mind- the yin/yang of to judge or not to judge:

One bitten twice shy = leery, closed, cautious, permanent, stuck

Second Chance = new, fresh, do-over, redemption, clean slate, open


This is the week of the Second Chance, it sounds so much better!

Are you with me??

judgement be curious no judgmental