Advent Daily Devotional, Day 9

Mon, Dec 7 – DAY 9

Peace grows out of contemplative practices. Set apart time for stillness, centering, or movement as a form of meditation or focus.

Sometimes this requires becoming motionless: holding a yoga pose, maintaining a prayer position, or observing utter silence. Sometimes it involves movement of the body such as walking or knitting, and permission to unleash a restless mind through journaling or creative expression. One way or another, we are urged to set apart time and nurture the inner spiritual being.

Along the way, we aim to develop internal equilibrium. Become comfortable knowing ourselves more deeply. Gain insight. Renew energy and creativity.

Altogether, contemplative practices strengthen the spiritual muscles upon which we draw. They create resilience and balance in our bodies, hearts and minds. — Rev Gail

The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever. Isaiah 32:17

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. — John 14:27

Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset. — Saint Francis de Sales

No person, no place, and no thing has any power over us, for ‘we’ are the only thinkers in our mind. When we create peace and harmony and balance in our minds, we will find it in our lives. —Louise Hay

TUNE UP rescheduled

WED, MAR 21  (rescheduled from Wed, Mar 14)
  • TUNE UP (Fitness) with LAURIE McALEER
    10-11am • Parish Hall, Jackson Community Church
    Join members of the women’s group and fitness trainer Laurie McAleer for a gentle, introductory fitness class for beginners. Wear comfortably clothing, sensible shoes, and bring a bottle of water. Men and women both welcome to come try this class. Laurie will lead a fitness class that can be customized to each person’s abilities, and help improve overall wellbeing, as well as focusing on body areas that may need additional support and care.

Meditation: Of birds & lilies — being present today

letting go of worries
Oh soul, you worry too much.
You have seen your own strength.
You have seen your own beauty.
You have seen your golden wings.
Of anything less,
why do you worry?
You are in truth
the soul, of the soul, of the soul.”
— Jalaluddin Rumi

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength. — Corrie ten Boom from Clippings from My Notebook

Sorrow looks back, Worry looks around, Faith looks up. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Let Birds (excepts) — Linda Gregg.
Eight deer on the slope …
The night sky blue …
I will never give up longing …
Let birds, let birds.
Let leaf be passion.
Let jaw, let teeth, let tongue be
between us. Let joy.
Let entering. Let rage and calm join …
Let winter impress you. Let spring …
Let birds.

You must be completely awake in the present to enjoy the tea. Only in the awareness of the present, can your hands feel the pleasant warmth of the cup. Only in the present, can you savor the aroma, taste the sweetness, appreciate the delicacy.
If you are ruminating about the past, or worrying about the future, you will completely miss the experience of enjoying the cup of tea. You will look down at the cup, and the tea will be gone.
Life is like that. If you are not fully present, you will look around and it will be gone. You will have missed the feel, the aroma, the delicacy and beauty of life. It will seem to be speeding past you. The past is finished. Learn from it and let it go. The future is not even here yet. Plan for it, but do not waste your time worrying about it.
Worrying is worthless. When you stop ruminating about what has already happened, when you stop worrying about what might never happen, then you will be in the present moment. Then you will begin to experience joy in life. — Thich Nhat Hanh

Don’t worry if you’re making waves simply by being yourself. The moon does it all the time. – Scott Stabile

Even if you have three or four extra syllables, or even five or seven, you needn’t worry as long as it sounds right. But if even one syllable is stale in your mouth, give it all of your attention.  – Basho

Leda, After the Swan (excerpts) — Carl Phillips
Perhaps, in the exaggerated grace of his weight settling,
the wings raised, held in strike-or-embrace position
… whose feathers came away in my hands,
and the bit of world left beyond it, coming down
to the heat-crippled field,
ravens the precise color of sorrow in good light,
neither black nor blue, like fallen stitches upon it,
and the hour forever, it seemed, half-stepping its way elsewhere–
then everything, I remember, began happening more quickly.

Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends. — Maya Angelou

Jesus no longer belongs to the past but lives in the present … the everlasting “today” of God. … How often does Love have to tell us, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” Our daily problems and worries can wrap us up in ourselves, in sadness and bitterness … and that is where death is. That is not the place to look for the One who is alive! —  Pope Francis from The Church of Mercy

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