Posts Tagged ‘freedom’

Releasing Expectations

 

       Life presents us with opportunities for growth; some painful and some exciting, but these lessons are always challenging our core values and beliefs.  With every new opportunity, we test ourselves and all that we currently know by choosing to either move forward toward the unknown or play it safe.  Whenever we start something new, we’re pushing past our comfort zone and thus pushing past our expectations. While there is familiarity with the known, there is little growth so we make up expectations and fantasize about what this new experience will be like. It’s almost like preparing for a play by studying our lines, except we are the writer, actor, and director. We give emotion, dialogue, and set the scene for our new adventure, environment or relationship, and then get upset when things don’t turn out the way we planned (expected).

Having expectations is part of being human, however, it doesn’t have to take center stage. We’ve all heard the saying “expectations are planned resentments”. This means that by creating them, or buying into them, we are setting ourselves up for failure, disappointment, and pain. Instead, take life as it comes and learn to “roll with it”. Plan, if you must, but don’t fall into the trap of “expecting” anything of a person, place, or thing (ex: event).  The key to releasing expectations is acceptance.

Accept what you cannot change. And that is pretty much everything outside of yourself. Recognize your Spiritual power within and harness control (awareness) over your thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and actions. Practice an attitude of gratitude. As Dr. Bernie Siegel says in his book 101 Exercises for the Soul, “you can’t be troubled and grateful at the same time”.  Through acceptance and gratitude, peace and joy exist.

I am so grateful to have learned this lesson in my life and for the opportunity to practice is regularly.     Join me in releasing expectations forever! There is freedom in not expecting and instead simply allowing experiences to unfold; naturally.  Try it today and see for yourself.

 

Blessed to be Free

During July, Americans celebrate freedom and independence. Fortunately, I was blessed to have been born in the United States of America where I am free to speak my mind, believe whatever I desire, own property, have multiple children, vote, practice any type of profession, travel and create a life of my own choosing. Many people around the world don’t have this kind of luxury. Perhaps you are one of these people.

One thing we all have in common however, is the ability to choose our own thoughts; that in turn reflects our attitude, and ultimately our life experiences. Regardless of political, social, religious, or economical oppression, nobody can control what is inside our heart and mind; this is 100% under our own control. We can choose to forgive and we can choose to have faith. Even in the case of “brain washing” or psychological torture/abuse, our soul/spirit is untouchable. This divine essence always knows the truth of our being and provides more sustenance than food or water.  There are countless stories of such experiences from people who have been imprisoned, oppressed, abused and tortured who have risen above all adversity as a result of this Truth. They never lost sight of their freedom to choose their own thoughts, attitudes and attitude despite any circumstance.

The story of Immaculée Ilibagiza, is a perfect example of this concept during the 1994 Rwanda genocide when she and seven other women huddled silently together in a cramped bathroom of a local pastor’s house for 91 days! During this horrific ordeal, Immaculée lost most of her family, but she survived to share the story and her miraculous transition into forgiveness and a profound relationship with God. To read more of her story, get her book Left To Tell or check out her website for yourself. http://www.lefttotell.com/

The story of Viktor Frankl, a Holocaust survivor, is another example of someone who utilized his freedom of thought to endure unspeakable horrors. For more of his story, read his book Man’s Search for Meaning and discover what he learned about freedom. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viktor_Frankl

When I think of these brave people, I am so thankful and grateful for the freedoms I enjoy and for the choice of thought/ attitude/ perception, that is inherent to every human being on this planet.

What freedoms are you grateful for? Take a moment to reflect on what you might take for granted or tell your story and comment below.  Here is what the books look like for featured authors mentioned above. They are definitely worth reading!

 

With love and blessings; gratitude and Joy,

Lisa

 

The Blessings of Palm Sunday

  Today is Palm Sunday; the kick off to Holy Week for millions of Christians and Jews all over the world and a time for prayerful reflection and gratitude, as well as preparation for changes yet to come. For Christians, today marks the day Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a road covered with palms fit for a king.

In the Jewish faith, the rituals of Passover serve as important reminders of the sacrifices and triumphs made by the Israelites to regain their freedom in ancient Egypt.

For me, Palm Sunday has deep spiritual meaning because it marks the beginning of personal transformation. Each year, I release another layer of pain, regret, or shame in order to resurrect a new dimension of freedom. Today, I embark on Holy Week by identifying what aspects of my character or life need forgiveness or healing. Then I pray on these areas all week long in order to gain greater clarity of their deeper meaning; to identify the lessons they have for me, since I know that everything happens for a reason and this includes every action and reaction I may have.  I also double up on reading spiritual literature to help me to see different points of view and therefor open up my consciousness to greater capacities for love and understanding. I also meditate on these messages from scripture and other sacred texts in order to heed their personal message for me  allowing them to inspire and motivate me through this process of grieving and healing.

What does today (this week) mean for you?

I urge you to take serious thought about utilizing the blessings of Palm Sunday and this Holy Week to resurrect a new found freedom within yourself. In order to have a breakthrough, we must each be willing to break down our barriers (walls) of anger, hurt, shame, fear, and pain so that we can ascend to a higher plane of existence.

Change is possible. Change is inevitable. Give yourself the blessing of embracing changes in your life with courage and strength. Face them head on and witness the miracles for yourself. Create your own rituals or plug into the one’s offered by your spiritual community, and utilize this sacred time of year to cleanse your heart of any unwanted feelings that may be holding you back.

Throughout the week I will be posting messages of hope and faith as I embark on this sacred journey and remember the sacrifices Jesus made for me through his example.

Join me today. Comment what’s on your heart. Identify your areas for transformation. Great joy await for us all on the other side!

Love & Blessings

Rev. Lisa

 

Honoring 11-11-11

  Today is November 11th, 2011; it is a special day of Peace & Unity as well as Remembrance since it is also Veterans Day. We are blessed to have such a wonderful planet to call home that is abundant with fresh oxygen from billions of trees, as well as clean water to drink and provide climate stability. I am grateful for the sun that grows my food and for keeps me warm; regulating the atmosphere and protecting us from harm. We must be the change we wish to see in the world; by living in Peace and coming from a place of Unity Consciousness. We are all One human race. We share this planet we call home. Thank you to those who have fought and continue to fight for freedom. Now it is time to lay down your guns in exchange for peace. The fight is over. Freedom has won; we see this all through the world as oppressed nations rise against tyranny and claim democracy. It is good.  It is done.

 

  Light a candle to remember and signify peace. Say a prayer of thanksgiving or simply be still. Mother, Father, God, I am so thankful and grateful for peace, freedom, health, abundance, prosperity and most of all Love. I am so blessed to live in a world of balance, hope and harmony. Earth, air, fire and water remind me of all the elements that encompass human life. I am abundantly and richly blessed.  Our leaders are aligned with Infinite Wisdom and Intelligence; Love and Unity. The sick are now healed. The poor rich. The oppressed free. We are all One. Amen.

God is in the Details

What a lovely sight; the ocean. How it moves freely and effortlessly over, in, and around land and ships. Millions of sea shells bask in the sunlight as pictured on the left, yet each is uniquely different. God surely is in the details of life.

How often do we become still in gratitude to bask in the magnificence of the Divine? God is all around us, guiding and directing the planets, animals, weather, and us, if we listen and heed his/her advice. I am so thankful that I don’t have to have all the answers and that I can rely upon a power greater than myself for wisdom and strength to lead me through anything.

Each day I am reminded of Spirit’s availability and accessibility in my life. When I feel overwhelmed or out of control, there is a power for good that I can call upon that restores me to sanity and serenity, however I must call upon it and believe its wisdom. There is freedom in trusting God. Spirit never abandons anyone and loves us all unconditionally.

Where in your life is God calling you to surrender control of the details so that something greater can come into being?  Today, I encourage you to become still long enough to feel the presence and peace that awaits when we release our fear and find faith.

Possibilities Abound!

Become transported into a world of pure imagination where anything is possible. What do you think of and see? Drink in the colors, sounds, smells, and tastes of your dreams making them real  Think this only applies to art? Think again.

Each day, we are presented with limitless possibilities resulting from the choices we make. Today, I showcased my very own “Possibilities Book” as a final project for a class I was teaching. Each student presented their books brimming with hope and excitement for the dreams they represent therein while stating the risks each were willing to take to make these possibilities real. Then we affirmed the manifestation of these intentions for each other.

Too often we walk through life allowing fear to scare us away from leading the lives we really want and are called to. When was the last time you told yourself  “I’ll do ___, when ___” or “I can’t because __”? These excuses are fear based and only serve to squelch our ideas / dreams of what’s possible. The truth is, that the sky’s the limit and only we set our parameters in life. Thankfully, I have learned to identify my dreams and push past the fear in order to find joy and satisfaction in living my fullest life possible and YOU CAN TOO!

Take fear head on and dare to step into your possibilities. When we feel fear, we know we’re pushing past our comfort zone and soon afterwards, the thing(s) we’re afraid of set us free. Momentum builds confidence and strength in knowing that we can all do far more than we think is possible.

Wanna know more? Check out Rhonda Britten’s book, Embracing Fearless Living and join a Fearbuster Support Group today.

http://www.fearlessliving.org/support_system/join_a_fearbuster_study_group