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Merry 2013 Christmas Friends

Dear Friends,     Merry, merry, merry Christmas. I am traveling and appreciating all of it. Whether you are on the road or at your home, I send you a warm Christmas greeting. I left Los Angeles, my new home, to return to Phoenix and connect briefly with some friends and colleagues. Then, off for Christmas to my daughter’s home in Nevada. While in Phoenix my colleague Rev. Renee Morgan Brooks and I discussed the meaning of Christmas over a Thai dinner. She recited to me her favorite Christmas sentiment from Michael Grady’s rewrite of A Christmas Carol. I loved it so much I asked her to please repeat it for you, too. Here goes … Now, my favorite line is to “measure your riches by what you give.” This reminds me of the reason we forgive. We forgive, or give Grace to others, and the side effect is we receive the freedom of Grace too. As we forgive, we are naturally freed. Which had me think of tithing. The practice is to give 10 percent of your income to where you are spiritually fed. As we give our first ten percent we begin to realize that we have. There is a magic in focusing on what we have verses what is gone, what we’ve lost, or what we long for and believe we don’t own. Christmas is such a powerful day to give. If today is one of those holidays that doesn’t feel emotionally solid to you, then sit down and write letters to people you love. Magic happens. If you are hard on yourself, decide to give yourself the benefit of the doubt and treat yourself differently. Give, give, give, give. This past year I read an interpretation of the Kabbalah; an esoteric Jewish text. I took away from it the knowing that I am go both give to myself and receive from myself that which I desire. This means that within me is a giver and a receiver. To give to myself and not receive creates a log jam. To desperately want to receive and to not be willing to give to myself creates a sense of starvation or not enoughness. Both sides are necessary. This insight, whether it really existed within what I read or not, shifted the way I do my life. And, since there is really only One of us here; God in the flesh, then all giving and receiving is from and to self even though it may look otherwise. Play with this concept if it calls to you. My wish for you is peace of mind and open heartedness so I will begin by giving it to me and living it outwardly. Much, much love and Merry Christmas. bonnie

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