...self care is never a selfish act- it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others. Anytime we can listen to true self and give it the care it requires, we do so not only for ourselves but for the many others whose lives we touch.

Parker J. Palmer, Let Your Life Speak

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wake Up to Love

It's time to wake up
But your dead will live, LORD; their bodies will rise-- let those who dwell in the dust wake up and shout for joy-- your dew is like the dew of the morning; the earth will give birth to her dead. Isaiah 26:19

But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. For this reason it says, "Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you." Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise.... Ephesians 5:13-15

The act of de-cluttering our lives begins in receiving the light, the joy, and the renewal that only God can give. Trusting the living Christ now and receiving the promise of being like him in the resurrection is apart of purgation, according to I John 3:3. 

Even before we walk, we choose to do so. We want and will to move in God's direction. We repent and change course, if at first only in our thinking. But it begins in knowing ourselves as first loved by God.

Becoming known and loved in the deepest sense is God's gift to give. For now, we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood. I Cor. 13:12. That kind of seeing, here and now, is a promise received through faith. 

The best news is that it is much easier to know God, whose intentions are clear from the beginning, than it is to know ourselves. We hide behind the false, ego - created self. We sculpt something else that we think will give us a better chance at having love, security, power, or happiness. We do not see ourselves for who we really are. We have trouble knowing and accepting and loving ourselves as we are.

But God doesn't have a hidden agenda. God creates life out of abundance, without needing to, and calls our creation very good! Our God-image and birth right is rooted in being created and loved by God. Simply put, it really isn't your opinion of yourself that matters so much anymore. Rather, it's God opinion of you that matters. We regard no one, including ourselves, from what St. Paul referred to as "a human point of view." 

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Having been in ordained ministry in the UMC for 34 years, I've experienced the truth that although, clergy are frequently present for others, no one can offer what they don't have.That's why if you're a clergy person, you need someone who will listen to you. Not the random next closest person available, but rather someone like a spiritual director, a therapist, a peer who can be fully present to you. I hope the links and posts you find here will give you ideas, humor, hope and encouragement. Scott Endress

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If you want a formula for making the best of the less-than-perfect and making the most of what you have been given, then begin to compare your lot to what you were before you were born, and it will empower you with wonder every time. John Claypool

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