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HOLD HOPE

Single leaf in a bird bath.

 

 


“At least one person has achieved a cure from every type of cancer.”

I heard that during my first visit to the Wellness Center in Phoenix, shortly after I had been diagnosed with stage 4 lymphoma and told, “There is no cure.”

No matter what dis-ease we face,
in our physical health
or any area of live, healing is always possible.

Have hope.

Through each passage and season may we trust in the goodness of life.

HOLDING THE LIGHT – A FORM OF PRAYER

Burning Candle
“I’ll be holding the light for you.”

Have you ever said this to someone in a challenging situation? Has anyone said this to you?

This idea and intention to “hold the light” seems to be growing as a common expression. I hear it as another way of saying, “I care” and “I’ll pray for you” when we feel empathy for the hurt a loved one is experiencing.

But what does it mean?

And exactly how do we “hold the light” for someone?

I was asking these questions when a clear image suddenly came into my mind.

I saw myself in a small, simple, windowless room. I was standing at the head of bed, holding a candle. In the bed was a friend who was experiencing deep emotional pain. At the foot of the bed was another woman, standing by.

And I got it.

Yes, my friend was in pain… laboring with pain. And it was because she was about to give birth to something new and wondrous in her life! The woman at the foot of the bed was an angel present to facilitate with the birthing.

My role was simply to stand at the head of the bed and… well, just hold the light, without fretting, worrying, or getting in the way. I watched as a golden glow filled the room and bathed each of us in the energy of love.

I now use this image whenever I am privileged to hear the courageous sharing from a family member or friend who confides a challenge regarding their health, or finances, work, or in a relationship, whatever…. I trust that in every challenge there is something ready to be born, something new, something wondrous… something to welcome into the world.

With deep respect for our friends and their birthings, we can stand by them in this way, holding the light.

Does this resonate with you? Do you have another visual image that represents “holding the light?” If so, please share it. Visualizations can help make our intentions more real, anchor them, and add energy to our caring intentions.

SEDONA’S COFFEE POT ROCK…AND FAITH


 

When I wake in Sedona and look out from my bed, I can readily see the formation known as Coffee Pot Rock.”

 

Like many of Sedona’s Red Rocks, this one is named for what it resembles.

Can you see what looks like an old-style, percolating coffee pot at the far-right end of the elevated range? (You may need to use your gift of Imagination.)

 

Recently, when I woke, Coffee Pot Rock was not there!

 

At least it appeared to “not be there” because a heavy fog rested right on the tree tops and covered the entire rock range. (Notice the seeming “absence” of the Red Rocks in the second photo.)

 

In a few hours, the vapor lifted, and I could once again plainly see the Red Rocks.

 

Meanwhile, while the rocks remained hidden from view, I was reminded of how our inner gifts can seem to be absent.

 

In fact, it was a morning when I felt empty of Joy.

 

I saw this illusion of the rocks missing, along with knowing that the giant formations were indeed present, as a symbol of Faith, which led to feeling of gratitude and on to a stirring of Joy.

 

Anytime we experience the “absence” of Joy or Love or Faith… any of our inner resources… we can remember that that experience is an illusion… like the missing rocks.

 

Just like the Red Rocks existing, as they have, for millions of years,

the gifts of Life exist in us, always.

 

Consider letting this be a symbol of Faith for you, too.



ASK FOR A BIGGER PLATE

 

Have you ever said, “I’ve got too much on my plate?”

 

Several years ago, while I was promoting a new book and traveling around the Midwest, I voiced that to Rev. Ralph, a minister I met in Milwaukee.

 

“Well, just ask God for a bigger plate!” Rev. Ralph chortled. “That’s what I do.”

 

Although his response was offered humorously, and I laughed along with that vibrant man, I immediately sensed the power in his light-hearted suggestion. And, in that ah-ha moment, the image of a large plate popped into my mind.

 

For sure, it makes sense for us to regularly examine our lives with compassion and wisdom, prioritize, and postpone (or eliminate) some of our “to dos.” Sometimes we do need to remove stuff from our proverbial plates.

 

At the same time, it IS wise to ask for a bigger plate!

 

We are all capable of so much more than we are presently doing and being.

 

Asking for a bigger plate reminds me of the Prayer of Jabez. Perhaps you read the book by that name which was authored by Bruce Wilkinson, published in 2000. The bestseller is based on the 1 Chronicles 4:10 biblical quote in which Jabez asks God to enlarge his “territory.”

 

To me, the Prayer of Jabez is like asking God for bigger plate. That prayer is not about wanting more material power and prosperity, but about having limitations softened and capacities expanded. We can all benefit by expanding our consciousness, capacities, and confidence. Can’t we? And, we need guidance and grace to do that.

 

When, like Jabez and Rev. Ralph, I ask for a bigger plate, I feel less restricted by limiting thoughts, such as I don’t have enough time; and I experience a sense of more space, focus, order, peace, and hope.

 

Try it. Ask for a bigger plate. Picture one in your mind. And, see how it works for you.

 

USE VISUALIZATION TO FEEL PEACEFUL AND SAFE: SURROUND YOURSELF WITH A TWELVE GIFTS’ BUBBLE

Glenda Bubble

By Charlene Costanzo

Can you recall the first time you saw THE WIZARD OF OZ? What in that film made the biggest impression on you? For me, it was the arrival of the Good Witch of the North, gliding in to Munchkin land in a lustrous bubble.

That image popped into my mind this morning, as I was wondering: How can protect myself from negativity? How do I do that without isolating myself? How can I be fully in the world, contributing in positive ways, and not be pulled down by the fear, the anger, and the hurt I often see and feel?

I wanted to maintain the peace I was feeling after prayer and meditation.

Suddenly, there it was, in my mind’s eye, that large, luminous bubble floating toward Dorothy in the film and toward me as the viewer.

And I “got it.”

As I child I wanted to be in that bubble. I realized that…  I COULD!

In my imagination, I created a sense of being in a bubble that is filled with all the highest energies of life. I am imagining that bubble around me now. Its shimmering film allows all the lovely energies within to pass outward. Like a sweet flower, the bubble I am in is frangrancing the world with love. Yet, that film is tight enough to prevent heavy energies from entering into the bubble.

 

Imagination is powerful. We all have this gift. And we use it every day.

Consider using yours to create such a bubble through visualization. It’s easy, fun, and feels great!

Sit in a comfortable place. I like to sit on my bed, propped up with my back against pillows and my legs stretched out in front of me.

Close you eyes, or keep them open, as you prefer.

Place your dominant hand over your heart and your other hand over your belly.

Breathe in deeply. Exhale slowly.

Next time, on the in-breath, imagine that you are drawing toward you, the powers of strength, beauty, courage, compassion, hope, joy, reverence, wisdom, love, and faith.

They are now surrounding you, sparkling with light and all the colors of the rainbow.

Imagine an iridescent film forming in a circle, a ball, all around you.

You are in the bubble.

Now, glide through your day, in a wondrous way.

“Use your imagination not to scare yourself to death, but to inspire yourself to life.” – Adele Brookman

FIVE MINUTES FOR PEACE

Ice Cube Melting

Here is a simple practice you can incorporate into your day with relative ease no matter how busy you are. It is a small yet real way to foster peace within yourself and bring a measure of peace into the world. Over time, it can become a sacred daily ritual with profound effects.

Upon waking or before you begin your work day, remove an ice cube from your freezer and place it in a cup, saucer, or bowl. Set the container in a room temperature place where it will remain undisturbed by pets or children.

See the ice cube as representing fear, your own fear in all the ways it shows up, as well as fear in the world.  Silently or out loud say, “This represents fear. I am willing to allow my feelings of fear to soften and melt away.”

Go about your day.

At a convenient time later in the day, bring your attention again to the container. Notice the water now in the liquid state. See it as representing fear transformed. Bless the water. Use this water to nourish a plant in your home. Or, go outdoors and pour it onto a place where, symbolizing your intention of contributing to healing on Earth, this modicum of water can nourish some tiny living thing.

HOMESICK? CONSIDER AN UPLIFT FROM HOME

I came upon a John-Roger quote about “home” this morning. When I read it, a memory and idea popped up and got my attention, like the first hot corn kernels that hit the bag in the microwave and call for me to watch and take care.

The quote is:

“Sometimes a person will feel a sadness and despair that nothing in this world can relieve. It is experienced almost as a feeling of homesickness, and that is actually what it is.” John-Roger goes on to say that we all long to be in touch with this place of “home” in us, the soul place in us, especially when we are out of touch with it.

I’ve known that feeling. Have you?

Well, the memory that suddenly popped was this:

In 1987, my sister-in-law, Mary Margaret, and I started an enterprise called UPLIFTS FROM HOME. It was a part of our main business, TISKET A TASKET, which was a gift basket service located in Jamestown, New York.

Through UPLIFTS FROM HOME, parents sent gift boxes to their away-from home college children who may be experiencing homesickness. Each monthly UPLIFT FROM HOME gift box was designed to nurture a student with food for the body, inspiration for the mind, and love for the spirit, all in a fun way. UPLIFTS FROM HOME were sent to military sons and daughters too.

The idea that burst forth was this:

What if we regularly sent ourselves some sweet little UPLIFT from that place of HOME within us? I think that this very idea came from that place of HOME in me! But, how would we do that? The intention itself is a start.

I invite you to consider sending your self AN UPLIFT FROM HOME today, from that place in you that loves you unconditionally.

What do you think of this idea? Goofy? Maybe. But maybe we all need to be a little goofy now and then. Consider having some fun with this. Be playful. Be child-like.
And let that place of HOME in you let you know that you are loved.

Eat some popcorn.
Play a piece of music you love.
Do a little dance.
Smile.
Tune in to the place of HOME in you.