Kindness and miracles

We live in a complex, highly technological world. Things that in decades past seemed much simpler (passing notes in school, for example) have become the domain of programmers and digital giants (text messages and social media). While it seems that some TASKS are easier to accomplish, the complexity of how they are done has increased in logarithmic proportions.

The constant presence of all the technology around us can lead us to believe that EVERYTHING in life that we want to accomplish will require complex interventions. We may begin to believe that if we don’t have these skills or are not connected to people with these skills; we’re at a disadvantage. We may begin to think that all this “advancement” hasn’t been a net positive gain for society and begin to feel a bit helpless.

While the stories from ancient wisdom texts can seem distant and irrelevant to our modern, high-tech lives; I believe that they are more relevant than ever. We just need to look past the context of the times in which they were written for the deeper wisdom.

The story of the prophet Elisha and the Shunammite woman is a great example.

In this story, a wealthy woman took notice of a prophet who passed by her home regularly on his travels. She mentioned it to her husband and together they prepared a small room for him to stay in when he passed through their village. The gesture appeared to come from a place of compassion for a traveling person, and kindness.

Elisha appreciates the gesture, and after a few visits, he asks his servant what the woman would appreciate as a gift for her hospitality. He offers a good word with the king, a favor with the army and both are denied. The woman basically says “we are good here among our own people“.

In further conversations it comes to light that the woman has no children; and so Elisha “speaks his word” to her that in the following year, at about the same time, she will embrace a son. She protests, telling him that both she and her husband are old.

But the woman conceived, and she bore a son about that time the following spring, as Elisha had said to her.

2 Kings

The deep life lesson in this simple story is that attracting miracles into our lives does not require elaborate plans, complex rituals or high-tech solutions. As this story suggests, they come to us when we embody the best of our human nature. When we are kind, generous, forgiving and loving for no reason other than we feel in our hearts that it’s the right thing to do.

The Shunammite woman did not plot to charm the prophet so to get a favor. She reached out in kindness to someone she saw traveling and without a regular place to stay. She and her husband provided shelter, respite, and a place for him when he passed through their village.

It specifically notes that they are from different ethnic groups, and this is another important aspect. She did not provide an open room to one of her kin, but a stranger – someone who lived and moved in circles with which she was unfamiliar.

Lastly, she had no expectation of anything in return. She gave without any strings attached to her gift.

Today we don’t see too many passing prophets in need of a room, and many of us are at work all day, so would miss them if they came through our neighborhood anyway! But each one of us has the opportunity to see someone we don’t know, and reach out in kindness to provide something we have that can make their travels in life a little easier.

The word “stranger” is wider than simply people we don’t know. The generous outreach to a passing stranger in an airport or other public place is one thing: consider the people we know, but may avoid or consider to be “odd” or even aggravating to us. Being kind, generous, loving and forgiving with these people is not only HARDER than it is with strangers, but it is as important – if not more so.

In the story, it’s telling that the woman did not provide a feast, or offer Elisha their room while they slept on the floor. They did not sacrifice their best livestock or supplies but shared what they had – in kindness and consideration of him as a fellow human.

This suggests that the Shunammite woman and her husband were, by default, good and decent people. And this is the important core, truth here: they received a miracle because of who they were – not what they did.

Wayne Dyer taught – especially toward the end of his life – that we attract into our lives according to who we are. This is the lesson from the story of the Shunammite woman and the prophet Elisha.

When we learn to show up in the world as generous, kind, forgiving, and loving; the miracles we seek come to us effortlessly.

We don’t need to engage in special prosperity programs, write down affirmations and paste them all over our homes, or give a certain amount/percentage of money to a specific place. There are no special incantations, prayers or other words that can replace or outperform the simple act of showing up every day as the best version of ourselves.

If we’re not sure where to begin, we can start with those closest to us: family, close friends, neighbors.

Be generous. Act in kindness. Speak loving words – especially when others act in opposition to these principles. We can be the Shunammite woman who provides “shelter” to someone outside of our community, our people, our tribe. When we focus on the Good that we can do in any amount and in every moment; Good flows into our lives.

It’s that simple.

(C) 2020 Practitioner's Path

Spiritual Maturity

I’ve been writing this blog for almost 7 years. In that time period I have documented numerous answered prayers, or “demonstrations” as they are called in the metaphysical / spiritual-not-religious corners of the world.

As I have often shared, I came into this teaching in a state of curiosity, not desperation. Not long before, I had been given a copy of the audio book, “The Secret” and begun my journey into the world of metaphysical experience. While I knew that The Secret was a doorway to a deeper path; I also knew that some of the examples in the movie were off base, and fantastical – even if they were meant as metaphorical representations of the way “this stuff works” (and I think they were meant that way and not as unrealistic goals).

Over the years that I have studied, learned and grown in my application and appreciation of these ancient, spiritual Truths; I have observed that there is a level of maturity in our use of them.

When we are immature, expectations are high and often untethered to reality. This can and often does lead to disappointment and an undermining of the beliefs. This is described best by Mike Dooley who was in the movie as “messing with the hows“. See my blog on magical thinking for an explanation of this.

When approaching the principles with maturity, however; real magic can come into our lives. This magic happens when we are willing and able to let go of the way we want things to happen and allow the principles to work as they work.

The maturity involved in this requires a relinquishment of ego – letting go of what WE wanted, and how WE wanted things to work out, and how WE saw the best outcomes as needing to be. A mature approach is one that is open at the top (nod to Ernest Holmes) and does not insist on doing things a certain way, and is always willing to evolve, even if/when it’s scary.

The following examples illustrate the difference:

A family member wanted to buy a pair of athletic shoes, but money was short. The IMMATURE wish was for more money; the MATURE knowing led to a pair of athletic shoes that met their needs, and was affordable within their budget.

A child who wanted to play the flute in band and a family that wondered about adding another instrument payment to the budget found that the IMMATURE wish for more money coming in each month so they could afford it was replaced with the MATURE knowing that they are provided when a flute showed up.

I was set to travel in the midst of a Winter storm. The IMMATURE desire I had was for my employer to cancel all travel until Spring. The MATURE knowing I experienced was that I was provided – not only with safe travel between Kansas City and Pittsburgh, but on time with no delays.

A couple years back, my daughter and her family moved across town. A few weeks after the move, the family cat disappeared. My grandson was distraught and all of us combed the neighborhoods – old and new – for Figgy. The IMMATURE wish was that Figgy would simply wander back into the yard. The MATURE knowing let go of the HOW and held on to the knowing that the highest and best outcome would manifest.

This outcome came in a call from Animal Control, more than a MONTH after Figgy disappeared. I feel strongly that this happened to teach me about faith, trust and persistence and each time I see Figgy with my grandchildren, I am reminded of that lesson (I was able to scratch his ears and give him a couple kitty-treats just yesterday!).

I’ve written often about my need for a new roof that required $15,000 and about concerns around finances specific to my student loans. The IMMATURE desires I held around these issues were for large, windfalls of money so that I could simply write a check and be done with the worry.

The MATURE knowing allowed for the outcomes that looked a bit different, but still met all my needs: I am not paying my students loans out of my monthly budget – and instead of a winning lottery ticket, a tree blew onto my roof and a part time job came my way.

These examples, along with the many others chronicled in this blog, have worked to teach me the critical importance of a mature approach to the application of spiritual principles in my life. I have learned the crucial aspect of “keeping out of the hows” and regularly see the miracles that emerge when I do.

For these reasons, I struggle to support teachers or self-proclaimed gurus who are not demonstrating a maturity in their practice. They are, sadly, leading others astray when they keep holding their hands over their bank accounts and praying loudly for more money to roll in to maintain things as they want them to be.

This behavior demonstrates a lack of depth and expertise – especially when they insist that they’ll not move off their current path (“I’m not changing the way we spend our money!”) even in the face of an obvious need to make drastic changes.

This is, I believe, spiritual malpractice. Not because I said so, but because teaching spiritual Truths to help people with hard life challenges is a sacred duty and our desire for money, position or power should NEVER outrank that responsibility.

In the Christian canon, the teacher Jesus taught that leading people astray was a big problem:

but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.

Matthew 18:6

The word sin is interpreted metaphysically to mean “missing the mark“. From this perspective, this counsel could be rewritten as:

  • Whoever causes someone new to these teachings to miss the mark – or use the principles ineffectively, which can create the perception that they are useless and lead people to abandon them – is committing malpractice, and should immediately cease and desist.

Does this mean that anyone not demonstrating immediate results is incapable of leading?

Not at all.

It DOES mean that to be effective and sustainable; leadership requires maturity – as evidenced in a willingness to be wrong, self-awareness, being open to ideas that conflict with one’s own, and the ability to let go of long-held sacred cows.

In other words, it means being able to understand the spiritual principles enough to LIVE them, and not just talk about them. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

 (C) 2020 Practitioner's Path 

Simple Things, Big Gratitude

There’s nothing quite like an impromptu gathering of friends who share some common threads and whose differences not only help to smooth each others’ rough edges, but bind us together to create a strong and interesting tapestry.

Today I marveled at the great wealth I have in my group of friends – some long-time friends; others relatively new. I am grateful for the technology that keeps us connected when life gets in the way; for good food and the bonds of friendship that are stronger than external circumstances.

For centuries, close knit groups of women sustained communities and maintained the ebb and flow of businesses, tended to babies and the elderly, and kept things moving forward – all while supporting each other in the daily, sometimes hectic/sometimes mundane activities of life. In times past, this support may have included helping with housework or farm work after the birth of a baby, a death in the family or other times of need.

In today’s high tech world it may still look like that in some corners, but it may also be as simple as a text message invitation to gather for lunch (this week Thai ~ next week, Mexican?!) 😉

I surely don’t stop to ponder this enough, but today I was granted the gift of a divine reminder: I am provided – always, and in all ways. I was able to stop for a moment and pay attention, to recognize even, the great blessing that is this circle of friends.

I am deeply grateful for each of you – for how you show up in the world, for who you are, for simply being you. You know who you are (all of you!) – thank you!


(C) 2020 Practitioner's Path

A Holiday Blessing

During this sacred season, I hold the knowing for each of you that the Spirit of Peace fills your life and your home; that Goodness follows you and that blessings of Mercy are granted to you in each circumstance you pass through and each situation you encounter.

As a beloved child of the Divine, you walk each day surrounded with, enfolded in and protected by the Infinite Spirit – that power for Good in the Universe that is greater than we are and ever available to us for our Good and the Good of all.

And so it is.

Happy holidays! ❤️🎄

A Gift of Healing

Thank you for coming along on the 30 days of healing path this past month. I hope that you found the verses, accompanying pictures, and the origins of each to be insightful, inspiring and more.

Please be sure to check out the book with all 365 days of the year annotated with a quote, verse, poem or other reading.

With the holidays coming, I can think of no better gift to give someone, whether they have everything or need everything.

Invited to Thanksgiving or other holiday celebrations this year? The hard copy version of this book (~ $8) would make a perfect host/hostess gift and will last long after the wine, cookie tray or pumpkin bread!

Available at Barnes & Noble

Peace & blessings!

Blessings in Passing

When I first began to study what I refer to as “larger spirituality” – spirituality not confined within a single dogma or worldview – I got a mental picture in my head when someone would use the phrase, “daily practice“.

I envisioned a room or at least a corner dedicated to their “practice” and often I immediately moved to the many barriers I had in my life that would prevent me from being able to sit in an incensed room in yoga pants for an hour every morning.

That’s not what they were saying – that was my filter. I learned down the road that while some people may have something like that going on, many others do not. A daily practice is as unique as each person, and requires no specific accessories.

In studying the works of Joseph Murphy and Neville Goddard, contemporaries in the early part of the 20th century (Goddard passed on in 1972 and Murphy in 1981); I am always struck with the sheer simplicity of their approach to prayer, or “knowing the Truth” about someone/something. It was from this perspective that I began, unintentionally, an extension of my own daily practice.

I live in a suburban neighborhood, and as I drive to work, I pass many people walking along the streest: school children, with and without parents; dog walkers; commuters walking to public transit and others. One morning I noticed a teenaged boy walking along the street. He was alone, and did not look happy. He was on the heavier side, and walked as if he dreaded arriving at his destination.

I immediately felt compassion for him – middle school and high school can be challenging places to exist – and so I held the thought for him that today was a much better day than usual. Driving past people, even on a neighborhood street, doesn’t leave much time for a long, complicated blessing. Plus, I have no way of knowing what each person would need: so my thought that day was a knowing that the blessings of the Infinite were upon him.

I am particularly moved when I see school kids walking alone and appearing to be sad; dreading the day ahead or trying to recover from whatever they experienced at home before walking out the door.

I think of the following from one of Joseph Murphy’s prayers:

I know that (individual’s name) is surrounded by the sacred circle of God’s eternal love, and the whole armor of God surrounds her/him and s/he is watched over by the overshadowing Presence of God.

Joseph Murphy
(Archangel Michael)

Since I don’t know the names of the people I drive past each morning, an easy technique is to simply accept that they are accompanied by the holy Presence and watched over in all they do.

If I am stopped in traffic I may add a visualization of a grandmotherly angel or two if the child/children are small, or a warrior-like archangel if they are teens.

Skeptics will roll their eyes (& aren’t likely to be reading this blog), but readers across the New Thought canon know that many of the teachers whose work form the foundation of the movement taught and lived this Truth: a thought held in the human mind is connected to the Infinite Mind and will demonstrate or manifest.

Over time this simple teaching has evolved into an organized religion (at least 3 versions at last count), each of which has added dogma, regulatory guidelines and complications that are unnecessary for the process to work, but that are understandable in the world of Caesar. And yet, the truth remains that the Good that is possible requires no prescribed order of words or official interventions.

In one of his most beloved talks, “Live in the End“, Neville shared the following:

“Do you know a friend who is unemployed? Well, then, see him as gainfully employed, and don’t tell him, that you may brag tomorrow. Don’t boast. Just see him gainfully employed.”

Nevill Goddard, “Live in the End”

Neville’s life work was a testament to this process. Many have studied and applied this process – some within, but I suspect most outside of formal religious or spiritual organizational structures.

There will be those who say, “How do you know it works? What if you’re just deluding yourself and wasting your time?

I know that this works when I use it for myself, and for the people around me who seek out my knowledge on such things. For the people I pass on the street, I may never know if my simple blessing thought was helpful or not.

But let’s consider this: at one point, a VERY long time ago, everything that we see (and much more that we don’t/can’t see) was part of an infinitessimally small, dense and hot singularity…and then BOOM!

An explosion and rapid expansion, heating and cooling of matter…13.7 billion years later, here we are. The fact remains that the preponderance scientific inquiry to date suggests that we all come from the same stuff. We are indeed, all connected.

I can’t single-handedly fix all the problems carried around by the people I meet or encounter each day. There are days when I’m not sure how I’ll manage my own issues, and those within my inner circle. But I can apply the principles I’ve studied and learned and used with success in my own experience.

If nothing else, my own knowing of peace and Good for the random people I pass on my commute helps to put me into a better space, which means I show up at work in a positive and beneficial (to me and to others) state of mind. I also believe that there is Good to be planted and blessings to be harvested when we know peace, joy, healing, love and more for those we meet along our way.

And so it is.

(C) 2019 Practitioner's Path 

A gift to start the week

The start of the traditional work week in the United States can be a blessing for some, while to others it seems like a curse.

It can be challenging to work at a job that you dislike; or to be at the mercy of people in the workplace who are mean and nasty; or to struggle with mental, emotional or physical challenges while still needing to navigate rush hour traffic and the stresses of a job.

It can also be challenging to face the work week without a job, or with a job that is not paying a living wage and falls short of providing what is needed to support yourself or your family.

In a previous blog, I shared an affirmative prayer for peace at work. This week I am sharing a New Thought artist whose songs are some of the best I’ve heard, musically as well as in verse/content.

I had the good fortune to hear Denise Rosier perform live at Seaside Center for Spiritual Living in Encinitas, California in 2018 and I’ve been a big fan ever since. You can check out her web page here.

This work week’s spiritual share is taken from Denise’s song, “Hallelujah Today” – the lead song on her album, Everyday.

The second verse begins with the following:

“With every mile, I’m reminded,
I never go, empty handed;
God is my strength, I’m never stranded,
I’m not alone.”

Denise Rosier, “Hallelujah Today”

I can think of no better coaching for anyone who dreads the work week – no matter what the reason. And while the words are beautiful as sung in this musical rendition, they are powerful as a spoken or written affirmation too.

AFFIRM: “I never go empty-handed; God/Spirit is my strength and I am never stranded. I am not alone.”

Regardless of the road we are traveling, taking time to remember this simple truth – whether the words are sung or we write them on a piece of paper and tuck into our purse/wallet – can make all the difference.

Most faith traditions remind us that we are never alone. We simply need to turn our attention back to this realization and know that all is well (no matter what it looks like on the outside of the situation or circumstance).

I leave you now in the very capable hands of Denise Rosier, and know that this week, the blessings that come to you outnumber the troubles – many times over.

And so it is.

(C) 2019 Practitioner's Path