RECEIVING THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY DAYS
Let's start with a prayer:
Breathe in me, O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy.
Act in me, O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy.
Draw my heart, O Holy Spirit, that I love only what is holy.
Strengthen me, O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy.
Guard me so, O Holy Spirit, that I may always be holy.
As the world's religions observe their respective Holy Days (Ramadan, Hanukkah, Christmas, etc.) this month, we too will celebrate this holy season. What does HOLY mean?
Holy in its original form from ancient Hebrew translates as: "That through experiencing existence, one's consciousness eventually connects to a state of perfect bliss."
Today is a HOLY Day! Why? Because we named it so! As we move into the Holiday Season, let us use it to raise our awareness to this holy place! And, specifically, let us use this Season to turn our awareness to three holy gifts of Spirit: Joy, Peace, and Power.
Now I don't mean JOY that comes only from outside stimuli; or PEACE that occurs only when life is calm or POWER that controls, overpowers or manipulates others. But, rather the JOY that springs forth from within just because; the PEACE that passeth all understanding and spiritual POWER.
Three beautiful theme quotes:
JOY - Zephaniah 3:17 (4th to the last book in the Old Testament): "The Lord your God in the midst of you . . . will make you to rejoice with gladness; he will renew you with his love, he will make you joyful with a praise as in the day of a feast."a
PEACE - How I Used Truth H. Emilie Cady: "Peace is an harmonious state of mind based on the divine idea of peace. Peace is the condition of harmony and tranquility that comes as a result of knowing our true relation to God. Universal peace is the harmony that results in the world when a sufficient number of enlightened souls know God consciously and apply this inner knowing to all their human relationships."b
POWER - Metaphysical Bible Interpretation Ed Rabel: "'If God is for us, who can be against us?'c This sentence reveals anew the truth that God is the one and only power in the universe. All things must be working together for our good, and we cannot be subject to any opposing power, since God - the one power, intelligence, energy, love, substance, and truth, the all and in all - is ever active in and through and for us. And what is true of us is true of all mankind."d
So this month -- these holy days -- we will look at Receiving, Being, Giving and Creating the Gifts of Joy, Peace and Power. And specifically, today, we'll explore receiving these gifts.
But wait -- Do we really need to RECEIVE anything? Aren't we already JOY, PEACE and POWER? Spiritually, yes we are. Let's look at it like this . . .
Imagine you have lived in the woods all your life and at 20 you come into the city. You go in a home and ask for a drink of water. The friendly, casual hostess says "sure, just go to the sink in the kitchen; there's filtered water there." She points you to the sink, you go there, and you stand. Where's the water?? It is available, but you must turn on the tap! And if you don't know, then the water may be a million miles away. It won't be in your experience even though it is right there. That's what I mean by receiving.
I love this statement from the Metaphysical Bible Dictionary for poise: "The realization of mastery is attained by unifying the consciousness with Divine Mind as its one source, by prayer and meditation, thus attaining the Christ consciousness."e In other words -- we must turn on the tap -- we must receive!
And I am going to suggest this morning that we are either consciously choosing to receive/tap into the holy gifts of JOY, PEACE and POWER or we are being controlled by our history (personal or ancestral or race) by default.
So to stimulate your thinking about receiving JOY, PEACE and POWER, I want to say a few -- just a few things. More importantly, in a few moments, I will invite you to step up to the tap and turn on the faucet to receive!
There is an important principle involved in this matter of releasing the spirit of joy from within, regardless of circumstances.
The Truth is that we live in a world of rhythm and harmony which is limitless in potential and each of us is limitless in capacity to demonstrate a personal experience of that limitlessness. But we must get in tune, and one important key is the bubbling forth of a jubilant spirit.
In other words, no matter what the challenges, no matter what you have or have not, you actually have every reason to be joyous -- for the joy of the Lord is your strength.
Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh: "Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy."f
Affirmation: "Today, I have fun, and God laughs by means of me."
This morning, think: how good are you at opening the tap for God's joy to pour forth through you? And how could you move forward this holy season more joy-filled?
There is a place within you where there is perfect peace and nothing is impossible.
The ego's desire is to be right, look good in front of others, encourage beliefs of lack and separation.
When your higher self is present, it always promotes peace. If you have a question about whether it is your ego or your higher self prodding you, the answer becomes obvious when you ask yourself, "Will this bring peace or turmoil to my life?"
A Course in Miracles says, "I must have chosen wrongly, because I am not at Peace."
Then our question must be, "How do I get over this and return to peace?"g
Remember, we are told, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give unto you. Not as the world giveth, give I unto you."h These were among the last words of the one who was called the Prince of Peace. And he continued, "Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful."i
His life was lived in the storm and yet it contributed more to peace than any other life this world has ever known. What he had, we can have - by keeping God at the center of our lives.
This morning, think: how good are you at opening the tap for God's PEACE to pour forth through you? And how could you move forward this holy season more PEACE-filled?
I've heard it said that when the knowledge of your power outweighs the fear of the condition, life begins.
Revealing Word Charles Fillmore: "Man is the power of God in action. To man is given the highest power in the universe, the conscious power of thought. There is a universal, creative force that urges man forward to the recognition of the creative power of his individual thought. This thought is elemental, and all its attributes come under the dominion of man. When he co-operates with Principle, man sits on the throne of his authority and the elemental force is subject to him."j
This morning, think: how good are you at opening the tap for God's POWER to pour forth through you? And how could you move forward this holy season more POWER-filled?
We have been given the holy gifts of JOY, PEACE AND POWER. These gifts of the Spirit are freely given, but we must receive them. We must choose them, care for them, nurture them and grow them in our lives.
Emilie Cady - Lessons In Truth: "God has given all His attributes to man; it rests with each individual whether he expresses them or not. God is no respecter of persons."k
RECEIVE THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY DAYS...ther, Mother, God; what an amazing truth!
You chose me even before you created the world to be holy and blameless in Your sight.
Teach me to understand more fully what it means to be set apart for the purposes of Your kingdom!
You invite me into Your presence to give myself as an offering so that You might transform me by Your holiness.
Show me how to walk towards a more perfect holiness.
Help me to submit to the work that the Holy Spirit is doing in my life.
Now, just envision a large tap with JOY, PEACE and POWER pouring forth from it into you; invigorating and empowering you.
See it washing over any old, false beliefs or historical programming.
Feel it building to a powerful point where JOY, PEACE and POWER is who you are!
Thank you, God, AMEN
And so it is!
bHow I Used Truth H. Emilie Cady
dMetaphysical Bible Interpretation Ed Rabel
eMetaphysical Bible Dictionary
fThich Nhat Hanh
gA Course in Miracles
jRevealing Word Charles Fillmore
kEmilie Cady Lessons In Truth