Insight and Perspective

I am unable to find words to express anything right now so below are excerpts from 
Marianne Williamson's book 

There is a difference between romance and love. Often the true path of love begins only when romance has begun to taper off, for love is the capacity to see light when darkness has begun to eclipse it. Love is easy when romance still lights everything in shades of pink, when the experience of a relationship is like the canvas of a sweet Impressionistic painting. Once the reality of our woundings reveals the darkness still lurking in all of us, romance might die, while true love does not.
Until we have seen someone’s darkness, we really don’t know who that person is. Until we have forgiven someone’s darkness, we really don’t know what love is. Forgiving others is the only way to forgive ourselves, and forgiveness is our greatest need. Running away from someone else’s darkness is a way of running away from our own, in the false belief that in running we can escape. But we cannot escape. Our self-loathing will always meet us down the road, no matter how fast we run. Failure to see our judgment of others as an extension of judgment to ourselves denies healing to both people----until the next time the lesson comes around, which it will.

Relationships are our primary teacher. 

     They are the context in which we either grow in the consciousness of God, or deny ourselves and others the opportunity to do so. For it is only love that can make us happy. To acknowledge love is to increase its capacity to heal us, to ignore love is to let it slip away.

What is not love is fear. Anger is one of fear’s most potent faces. And it does exactly what the fearful ego wants it to do: It keeps us from receiving love at exactly the moment when we need it the most. Our greatest need is to be able to express how scared we are. Instead, of course, we are often tempted to express anger, hoping that somehow, someone will read our minds and say “I know you’re only angry because you feel so scared. Come here and I’ll love you.” There are those rare moments when the other person is evolved enough to do that; in the vast majority of cases, however, our anger will send others further and further away from us, increasing our pain and increasing our terror.

Many people are proficient at romance who are not proficient at love. They see the humanness of their partner and say, Nah, I want romance again. Then they start over elsewhere, beginning again the path that will always end up in the exact same place. The choice to follow love through to its completion is the choice to seek completion within ourselves. The point at which we shut down on others is the point at which we shut down on life. We heal as we heal others, and we heal others by extending our perceptions past their weaknesses.
Emotionally, there are no small issues. Anything has the power to hurt, if our minds our vicious enough to use it against us. A small careless word from someone can trigger a torrent of painful feelings. God heals through forgiveness and asks that we do likewise. Attack is an easier response than forgiveness, and that is why we are so tempted to give into it. In our lives, we have seen more anger than examples of true forgiveness. It doesn't mean we suppress our anger, forgiveness means that we have asked for a miracle.: the ability to see through the mistakes that someone has made to the truth that lies in all of our hearts. It means, "I am angry, dear God, But I am willing not to be. I am willing to see this situation another way." It's not always easy. At times is feels more painful than the wound we suffered, to forgive the one who inflicted it. 
And, yet there is no peace without it. Attack thought towards others are attacks on ourselves.The first step in forgiveness is the willingness to forgive. If you can state, despite your resistance, your willingness to see the spiritual innocence, the light in the soul of one who has harmed you, you have begun the journey to a deep and unshakeable peace.

          Without forgiveness, love has no meaning. It has no fullness or maturity. Only when two people have shown each other the worst side of our natures are we truly ready for the task of love. Then we’re ready to begin. How unfortunate it is that so often we stop everything just as we reach the starting line.
          The point of love is to make us grow, not to make us immediately happy. Many of us have forsworn the chance for the deepest love in reaching out for the easier one.
          If we fail to live up to the sacred challenges of loving another person, then we will experience disastrous relationships, and the disasters will motivate us to grow. We have a choice whether or not to love, but we have no choice whether or not to grow.         
      Our intimate love is our partner on a holy adventure. With this person, we are given the chance to move into the center of things. In the spiritual space of intimate connection, we have the power to heal and be healed.
        In order to be healed, we must reveal our wounds. And so it is that the person with whom we share the deepest love is often the one with whom we share the deepest pain.  For when we hold a person deeply in our hearts, we hold their darkness as well as their light. We must accept both faces. The ability to accept our partner’s darkness and our willingness to reveal our own make us vulnerable to wounding. But these are sacred wounds; they are prelude to sacred healing. The purpose of intimacy is healing.
    Honoring our connection to another person is a way of honoring God. A relationship is more of an assignment than a choice. A powerful connection between two people is a potent psychic factor that exists regardless of a person’s opinion about the relationship. We can walk away from the assignment but we cannot walk away from the lessons it presents. Sweeping challenges under the rug doesn’t get rid of problems; because the universe is hologramatic, failure to complete in one area will always be reflected elsewhere. We stay with a relationship until a lesson is learned or we simply learn it another way. If honest communication between two people isn’t extended to the point of resolution and peace, the energy will attach itself to the psyche of both people and appear again as wounding in another relationship.
       This is the spiritual meaning of intimacy:  growth inward, past our masks and fears and recklessness, to the sacred place where we are naked before God and each other. It’s where we are willing to move so deeply into love that the demons do not deter us from our conviction to make it through to the light. How tragic it is, that we often turn our faces from each other when the work of healing has only just begun. For it is when the darkness has started its terrible drumrolls that the wise person knows to attend and take care.  The light is never far behind, if only we will be willing to stay on the path of the open heart. The key is the commitment to honesty and to the radical forgiveness necessary in order for honesty to be safe. Forgiveness and acceptance are the powers that heal us.
         Intimacy challenges us to seek a higher level of participation than the limited thought forms of romantic delusion or false mortality. It seeks authentic engagement before superficial agreements. It’s an adult activity and at times a very difficult pursuit.


A Father's Love Letter

My Child,

You may not know me,
but I know everything about you. 

Psalm 139:1

I know when you sit down and when you rise up. 
Psalm 139:2

I am familiar with all your ways. 
Psalm 139:3

Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. 
Matthew 10:29-31

For you were made in my image. 
Genesis 1:27

In me you live and move and have your being.
Acts 17:28

For you are my offspring. 
Acts 17:28

I knew you even before you were conceived. 
Jeremiah 1:4-5

I chose you when I planned creation. 
Ephesians 1:11-12

You were not a mistake,
for all your days are written in my book. 

Psalm 139:15-16

I determined the exact time of your birth
and where you would live. 

Acts 17:26

You are fearfully and wonderfully made. 
Psalm 139:14

I knit you together in your mother's womb. 
Psalm 139:13

And brought you forth on the day you were born. 
Psalm 71:6

I have been misrepresented
by those who don't know me.

John 8:41-44

I am not distant and angry,
but am the complete expression of love. 

1 John 4:16

And it is my desire to lavish my love on you. 
1 John 3:1

Simply because you are my child
and I am your Father. 

1 John 3:1

I offer you more than your earthly father ever could. 
Matthew 7:11

For I am the perfect father. 
Matthew 5:48

Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand. 
James 1:17

For I am your provider and I meet all your needs. 
Matthew 6:31-33

My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. 
Jeremiah 29:11

Because I love you with an everlasting love. 
Jeremiah 31:3

My thoughts toward you are countless
as the sand on the seashore.

Psalms 139:17-18

And I rejoice over you with singing. 
Zephaniah 3:17

I will never stop doing good to you. 
Jeremiah 32:40

For you are my treasured possession. 
Exodus 19:5

I desire to establish you
with all my heart and all my soul. 

Jeremiah 32:41

And I want to show you great and marvelous things. 
Jeremiah 33:3

If you seek me with all your heart,
you will find me. 

Deuteronomy 4:29

Delight in me and I will give you
the desires of your heart. 

Psalm 37:4

For it is I who gave you those desires. 
Philippians 2:13

I am able to do more for you
than you could possibly imagine. 

Ephesians 3:20

For I am your greatest encourager. 
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

I am also the Father who comforts you
in all your troubles. 

2 Corinthians 1:3-4

When you are brokenhearted,
I am close to you. 

Psalm 34:18

As a shepherd carries a lamb,
I have carried you close to my heart. 

Isaiah 40:11

One day I will wipe away
every tear from your eyes. 

Revelation 21:3-4

And I'll take away all the pain
you have suffered on this earth.

Revelation 21:3-4

I am your Father, and I love you
even as I love my son, Jesus.

John 17:23

For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed. 
John 17:26

He is the exact representation of my being. 
Hebrews 1:3

He came to demonstrate that I am for you,
not against you. 

Romans 8:31

And to tell you that I am not counting your sins.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled. 
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

His death was the ultimate expression
of my love for you. 

1 John 4:10

I gave up everything I loved
that I might gain your love. 

Romans 8:31-32

If you receive the gift of my son Jesus,
you receive me. 

1 John 2:23

And nothing will ever separate you
from my love again.

Romans 8:38-39

Come home and I'll throw the biggest party
heaven has ever seen.

Luke 15:7

I have always been Father,
and will always be Father.

Ephesians 3:14-15

My question is…
Will you be my child? 

John 1:12-13

I am waiting for you. 
Luke 15:11-32

Love, Your Dad, 
Almighty God

Dusty Roads

July 28, 2013

Dusty Roads

Ever since you were little,
I was there while you slept,
And I watched over you as the sun rose,
Above the horizon

And I made a decision a long time ago,
When my feet were heavy,
And the road was dusty,
To go to Jerusalem

My back hurt in the morning,
When I woke up from sleeping on the ground,
And my eyes were tired,
As people started coming to see me,
From all around….almost every day.

But I made a decision,
Every step of the way,
To go to Jerusalem
For the world, for those that would love me,
For those who would never, ever love me.
I went for them –
And I went for you.

Oh I know all about you….
Since you were little;
I’ve made sure that you were taken care of.
And when you were unaware,
When you worried, I was there,
Always doing more for you then you realized.

And before you were born I made a decision,
In the garden,
During the trial,
In front of Pilate,

On the way up the hill to Calvary,
Each step, every breath, every moment,
I made a decision…..
To give my life for you.

I know you’ve been troubled at times,
And lonely, afraid, and discouraged sometimes.

But if you never give your heart to me,
Or give anything to me,
I want you to know that I made my decision,
Gave my word,
Kept my promises,
And chose to risk everything for you.

When you woke up this morning,
I was there.
and I made my decision long ago,
…..I will always be there for you.

I know you don’t always agree with me.
I know sometimes I make you angry,
And confused.
But I want to be your Lord and your friend.
I bought you with my own life.

……Not so I could hurt you or desert you,
But so that someday,
When the dusty roads and the tears are all gone,
We can be together forever……

By Randy Stahla

The Starfish Story

July 20, 2013
Thank you WWDD and little Daniel Barden!!

A young girl was walking along a beach upon which thousands of starfish had been washed up during a terrible storm. 
When she came to each starfish, she would pick it up, and throw it back into the ocean. 
People watched her with amusement.

She had been doing this for some time when a man approached her and said, 
"Little girl, why are you doing this? Look at this beach! You can't save all these starfish. 
You can't begin to make a difference!"

The girl seemed crushed, suddenly deflated. 
But after a few moments, she bent down, picked up another starfish, and hurled it as far as she could into the ocean.
 Then she looked up at the man and replied, 

"Well, I made a difference to that one!!"

The old man looked at the girl inquisitively and thought about what she had done. Inspired, he joined the little girl in throwing starfish back into the sea. Soon others joined, and all the starfish were saved. 

~adapted from the Star Thrower by Loren C. Eiseley~

"Perseverance through great odds and against the criticism of others is the very hallmark of value-based idealism, as is refusing to accept failure. The understanding that we hold in our hands the power to change a life, a mind, or a circumstance today~right now~ is a powerful insight and motivator. At the same time, idealistic acts, even highly symbolic ones, have the power to inspire others to act, and sometimes in numbers significant enough to make a major or even complete impact on the problem at hand. 
Perhaps most inspiring of all is to witness the idealistic power of children and young people in action. The idealism of youth is a powerful force for leading to change in the world. Often it is our youth who put into action values that we have instilled in them but have failed to act on ourselves. Therefore, the world depends on the idealism of youth to lead the way."

Everyone Matters

The Ambiguious Man

June 23, 2013

It's been an interesting summer so far, nothing like I anticipated it would be. I had patiently waiting for the winter to pass in anticipation of baseball season, when my boyfriend was back in Colorado for the summer. But, an unexpected turn of events changed it....again. This time it was a tv film crew.
The summers since 2011 have been like this......exciting, yet confining. Lots of rules, subtle rules. He's a semi-pro baseball player who is passionately commited to his career while striving for a pro contract.

Today I woke up feeling frustrated, questioning the future of our relationship, struggling with my personal sacrifices required to maintain it and if it was worth it anymore. I doubted I could make it through to the end of the season in August. During the opening game in Raton, New Mexico several members of the camera crew, along with the producer began asking him questions about me after he introduced me to them while getting lunch with Sully and Tony in downtown Trinidad the next day. A few days later when I was back home, he said that he didn't want his private side of life exploited on national television asking if I could make myself scarce, and not to engage in any comversation with the ESPN crew if they approached me at the games or hotel. I had cancelled my summer job at a ranch in Montana because he asked me to be there to support him and now because of the reality show filming, his entire attitude changed So, the only thing left to do was pray.

When I finished praying, I logged onto my email account and in it was a link to this eblog...... The Ambiguious Man ....I love how God and serendipity work!! :)

Mother Teresa and Abe Lincoln

March 1, 2013

I love, love, LOVE Abraham Lincoln for his calm, kind demeanor and the way that he could talk to someone even in the midst of his anger and disappointment without ever saying a mean word or disrespecting them. Yet, the reason he talked to people the way he did was because of one small moment back in Illinois when he used to speak out his opinions and thoughts about people publicly by writing criticism about them on a piece of paper and then dropping it in the street where someone in town would eventually pick it up and take it to the newspaper press where it would be printed for the entire city to read. 
He did it one too many times and to the wrong person, James Shields, another politician, who challenged him to a duel to the death on the sandbar on the Mississippi River on September 22, 1842. Their arguments escalated and the hostilities between them would have ended in the death of one of them if it weren't for the intervention of friends at the last minute. 
Lincoln learned a valuable lesson that day and he swore that never again would he let his emotions dictate his viewpoint of another individual as he had not walked in their shoes and only had his perspective. Even during the civil war, replacing General after General who blatantly defied his orders, he would write a letter to them filled with emotion and how he felt then throw it into his fireplace to burn. 

Forgiveness sets us free. "And I will forgive their wrongdoings, and I will never again remember their sins." Jeremiah 31:34. Forgiving others is easy. Forgiving myself is close to impossible. Lucky for me God's grace knows no bounds, and that Ben and Jerry's make Chubby Hubby ice cream to appease my guilt.