Do you sometimes wonder why we are experiencing so many challenges in our country? Again and again, I hear my friends and acquaintances discussing the recession of 2008; the 2016 election and then the 2020 election; Covit-19 and schools, the bars, gyms, and restaurants; the increase in grocery prices, the greater violence occurring in the streets; social acceptance of tattoos along with purple hair; and other major changes evident in our media. One thing remains the same: the way we treat others is way others will treat us. Thank goodness for our friends and associates, who let us know we are here and important.
What have we to Fear?
We fear looking within to heal because there is a part of us that is convinced there may be something terrible we will find out about ourselves, and then we won’t be able to deny it anymore. Nothing could be further from the truth. You were created by unconditional love energy, and when you experience this Truth, it is so beautiful, so pure, so enchanting, you will wonder why you ran from it for so long. Be still and know. ~ Sharon Hess, Phx, AZ
When I read this message from Sharon Hess, I was struck by how true this insight is—we often do fear to go inside ourselves and experience what we may find there. For instance, I never wanted to be around angry people. Because of that, I would avoid aggressive, loud-mouthed, in-your-face individuals because they were a threat. As a result, my concern about avoiding any tension or aggression fed my position as the middle child in the family. I became known as the Peacemaker. If two of my friends were fighting, I would be the one to resolve their issues. I learned a lot about mediation as a little girl, but I did not learn much about dealing with anger and meanness.
Sometimes we might identify with a parent whose behavior we believe we might also find in our own lives. I am thinking of someone whose father was one of those people who kept his feelings to himself until some little thing, like the breaking of a dish, would set him off like Mt. Vesuvius, turning him into the Hulk, fuming with anger and cursing and knocking things all over the place with his children all scattering to hide from his blows. Hulk’s son, in turn, never allowed himself to show any anger, fearing he would also become some kind of monster like his dad. In fact, having married a beautiful woman, he refused to have any children because of his irrational fear of someday blowing up and treating them in the same irrational way his father had treated him. The truth is, this man really took more after his mother, kind and gentle, rarely disturbed by others, and quite flexible. But the son feared what he didn’t know about himself.
We need to take the time to look inside, perhaps by talking to close friends about what they see in us and asking ourselves about our own feelings and reactions. Each of us is so unique—none of us is destined to be like any parent or grandparent—or uncle or aunt—even if someone says, “You’re just like (whoever).” Each of us is individual—even while favoring some relative, we have our own style when interacting with others.
So sit and reflect—honor and praise your gifts! Do not allow yourself to think of any negative trait. Instead, consider all the gifts that make up who you are. You try to be kind, generous, helpful—you know your intentions. If someone misreads your actions and becomes annoyed, upset, frustrated, or whatever, that person has the issue—not you.
You know yourself better than anyone else—you are a golden treasure put on this earth to be modeled and shaped into the finest gold that can be found. If
you would only trust your own insights. If you have been absorbing all the bad words that have been thrust your way, the negative language pitched against you since you were little, then you need some supportive friends to give you some fresh insights into your good self. And believe what they say. You are beautiful, loved, and precious. You alone can be who you are. Enjoy who you are—and let others enjoy you also! You are a gift to the world. Do not fear who you are. Spirit will guide you in developing your best self.
When we were experiencing changes in our church, Spirit sent to us a couple who joined the church, became one with the community, and have become the people I lean on for assistance in planning and preparing services and events. Dennis and Debby Murrin also provide the feedback I need to monitor my own actions and know what is happening among our members.
Music can be a problem when a community is small and we cannot pay musicians to lift our hearts in song. Dennis filled that role: utilizing his I-Phone, subscribing to music databases, and purchasing a speaker. Dennis works with the chair to prepare the music for services and also is there to help arrange the room for services. Now, with Zoom as our method of delivery, Dennis has become the technical support of SLC.
At 6’3,’’ Dennis is hard to miss among the crowd. Since retiring and moving from Long Island to Phoenix with wife Debby, Dennis has engaged in many volunteer efforts: Peoria Police Patrol Volunteer, New Song Center for Grieving Children, and Treasurer of the SLC Board. One of several dedicated members who support our church on a regular basis, doing what they can to create a loving community of Spiritualists, Dennis, Debby, and every person who identifies with our churches I thank you. We all should be grateful to those people who form the foundation of our churches. To the Spirit of joyful community, thank you.