Saturday, June 24, 2017

I Know a Guy I'd Like to Emulate (Part 1 of Series)

It's when I am still and in that reflective space that I come up with ideas to blog about.  This series of posts is no different.  I don't even know yet how many people I will write about or even who the next person will be, only that I should write about people I'd like to emulate.  It's a great method of self reflection, don't you think?  That, paired with asking God* what else I should know, will definitely lead to more inner knowing.  So here goes.....

There are many people I'd like to emulate and most of them are friends, some old, some new. The first one I'll mention isn't even someone I interact with very often.  More than not, he and my husband who were college dorm mates, text about a sporting event to which both are tied.

Here's more about him.  This friend is a long-term enlisted serviceman.  He has served while based out of different states and countries.Where I see him most often is on Facebook.  He is a serial poster who has a terrific Facebook presence because he knows people everywhere.  I'd like to be like him.

For those of you who know me, this statement will seem out of character because, for the longest time, I have been at war with Facebook.  I have guarded against it stealing creative time away from me.  Lately, however, I have begun to change my mind because my latest heart's desire is to connect with people, new friends and old alike, all over the world.  If I had to guess why, I think it's that my age is tugging me to do so.

Related to this friend, here are the top reasons I want to be like him:

  • He has met so many people of different backgrounds and ethnicities from around the world.
  • He checks in on Facebook to places when he arrives because he hopes he will make a connection with them if they're there.
  • He wants to experience life to the fullest. 

When I ask God what else I should know, what I hear is that this friend also keeps connections alive among his friends.  I'd like to be like him in this way also!
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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  Who would you like to emulate and why?

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, "God, what do you want me to know?")

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net).

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Spiritual Journal (Reason 5)

There are many reasons spiritual journaling is helpful.  As a reminder, spiritual journaling is the daily practice of writing what's on our heart and then ending with asking God,* "God, what else should I know?" In this next series of posts I will describe the top 5 reasons for me.

#1.  Journaling puts me into a place of stillness (see previous post for detail).
#2.  Journaling makes me aware of the act of living (see previous post for detail).
#3.  Journaling helps me maintain a sense of wonder (see previous post for detail).
#4.  Journaling gives me the opportunity to write about my hopes and dreams (see previous post for detail).
#5.  Journaling helps me connect with God by asking God what else I should know.

My life is so much better, and simpler, because I have developed a more personal relationship with God.  This has come by the very simple practice of writing out the question "God, what else should I know?" and then waiting for a response.  The response might come from a thought that comes to me just then, or I might be compelled to draw a meditation card or open the Bible or a book of daily devotions, such as one of my current favorites, Mark Nepo's The Book of Awakening.

From this practice, I've received guidance about so much, such as how to be my best self and how to let go.  I also have received countless inspiration, often related to my creative being. Examples include this blog site, the artwork in my work space, the perennial gardens which outline my home, poems and so much more.  But enough about me.  See what happens when you do the work of journaling!
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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  How do you connect with God?

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, "God, what do you want me to know?")

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net).

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Spiritual Journal (Reason 4)

There are many reasons spiritual journaling is helpful.  As a reminder, spiritual journaling is the daily practice of writing what's on our heart and then ending with asking God,* "God, what else should I know?" In this next series of posts, I will describe the top 5 reasons for me.

#1.  Journaling puts me into a place of stillness (see previous post for detail).
#2.  Journaling makes me aware of the act of living (see previous post for detail).
#3.  Journaling helps me maintain a sense of wonder (see previous post for detail).
#4.  Journaling gives me the opportunity to share hopes and dreams.

The operative word in point number 4 is "share."  I am proclaiming my hopes and dreams to God because God can help me attain them or turn them into something better.  I believe that, because I have free will, I am the founder of my hopes and dreams.  Without creating them, I would just need to take whatever comes my way.  Expressing them allows God to know my desires and help me attain them.
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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  Name one of your hopes or dreams specific to you.

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, God, what do you want me to know?)

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net).

Monday, June 12, 2017

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Spiritual Journal (Reason 3)

There are many reasons spiritual journaling is helpful.  As a reminder, spiritual journaling is the daily practice of writing what's on our heart and then ending with asking God,* "God, what else should I know?" In this next series of posts I will describe the top 5 reasons for me.

#1.  Journaling puts me into a place of stillness (see previous post for detail).
#2.  Journaling makes me aware of the act of living (see previous post for detail).
#3.  Journaling helps me maintain a sense of wonder.  Let's face it, life is hard, but when I can come back to a sense of wonder, that sense that God is working in my life, it makes the hard days a bit easier.  Here are two examples:

A.  Sometimes during the stillness, I realize that I need to express gratitude.  This often leads me to writing out a gratitude list of things from the day before or from the current day for which I am grateful.  Where the sense of wonder comes in is that sometimes I think of something that does not seem of me; in other words, it feels like something I would not have thought of on my own. My assumption is that it is something that has been placed on my heart.  I think it's of God.*  (I do not believe this is unique to me).

B.  There are serendipitous things that happen to me all the time.  (Again, I do not believe this is unique to me.)  Writing them down helps me to remember these coincidences which I have come to believe are Spirit-led.  A recent example is that I went into the local book store and asked where to find the section about books about how to write fiction.  As the employee guided me to that section he said, "Also, there is a writer's club that meets the last Sunday of the month here and that's going on right now."  Needless to say, I spoke to someone at that meeting and made notes on my planner to attend up-coming ones!  Also, during this same week, I was given a copy of an old magazine by a meditation member who wanted me to read his published article. At the back of the magazine were poems written by local poets who were a part of another local writer's group, that I was not aware of, and that I have since joined.

Cultivating this sense of wonder is reason enough to journal, but if it's still not enough, stay tuned for two more reasons!!!!!!!
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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  What examples can you think of in your own life that have created a "sense of wonder" for you?

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, God, what do you want me to know?)

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net)

Friday, June 9, 2017

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Spiritual Journal (Reason 2)

There are many reasons spiritual journaling is helpful.  As a reminder, spiritual journaling is the daily practice of writing what's on our heart and then ending with asking God,* "What else should I know?" In this next series of posts I will describe the top 5 reasons for me.

#1.  Journaling puts me into a place of stillness (see last post for detail).
#2.  Journaling makes me aware of the act of living.  Instead of going through the motions from one day to the next without any consideration, it provides an opportunity for reflection.  Whether it's that I am compelled to write about the day before or to set intentions for the day ahead, it provides space to acknowledge the living I am doing.  Conversely, doing the writing about my days may actually showcase that I am not living in full.  It may be that I am not engaging in something that keeps coming across my path but I am ignoring or I am doing too many time wasters (for me, it's playing solitaire or on-line word games).
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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  What did you do two, five and seven days ago and if you can't remember, why not?

2.  What are your time wasters?

3. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, God, what do you want me to know?)

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net).

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Spiritual Journal (Reason 1)

There are many reasons spiritual journaling is helpful.  As a reminder, spiritual journaling is the daily practice of writing what's on our heart and then ending with asking God,* "What else should I know?" In this next series of posts I will describe the top 5 reasons for me.

Here's the first:
1.  Journaling puts me into a place of stillness.  In this frenetic-paced existence that is the 21st Century, the practice of journaling takes me to a more quiet existence, even if just for a very small space of time during my day.  If I am not able to journal on a given day, I feel that I've missed something, that there is a sense of loss. I generally use the same space to journal during a time when no one else is around or at least not awake.  In this quiet space, I come to a sense of being grounded as I start my day.  

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Now for the reflective questions which you can journal about or if you'd like to share your story, the community and I would love to hear from you!  Your comment could have a major impact on someone else.  Most likely it will be just the right thing at the right time for one of the readers. For me, God* wanted me to know that helping even just one person is wonderfully impactful.
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Reflective questions:
1.  Do you carve out one or more spaces during the day to be still?

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, God, what do you want me to know?)

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net)

Friday, June 2, 2017

Challenging God to Something Better

My most recent challenge to God* is that I wanted space to write my next book.  Specifically, I wanted to sublet the apartment of my friend's daughter in the city for the months of June and July. I figured that I'd have time to get there and back as necessary, because, after all, I was letting my vegetable garden go fallow so I had new-found space.  So I said to God, "If it's supposed to be, this apartment in the city, then show me the money!"

Well, here's what happened.  The extra money didn't come, and although initially disappointing, now that the time has come, I realized I got something better.

Instead of running back and forth into the city to write and out of the city to see clients, I am staying at home, out of the city.  When I looked at this time frame more closely, I realized I have three weeks of vacation during these two months/eight weeks in which the apartment would have sat idle. Because I didn't get to sublet this apartment, what I do get is to interact with my two college-age children and spouse frequently.  There's good energy in my home, so although not attacking the next book composition, I am writing short stories and poems.  I realize that this is the less frenetic version of what could have been and it is what my heart desires.  For this I have no regrets, only gratitude.
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Reflective questions:
1.  Is there something you're being called to let go of?

2. What does God* want you to know about this (ask directly, God, what do you want me to know?)

* I use the term God as a universal term.  You may decide that Great Spirit, Allah, Higher Power, Sensibility, etc. better suits you today.  It is not for me to decide.

Photo by MH

Note:  These posts are part of a broader call to do spiritual journaling (read more at CardinalTouch.net)