Advent - A Time for Humility and Connection

When you surrender, as the sacred season of Advent invites you to do, you step into a river of grace, holding you captive in its flow. Miracles will open up like rose petals, only to reveal more blessings deeply hidden in its sacred inner sanctum...

Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus!
Holy, Holy, Holy! Holiness is everywhere!

I drink a hot cup of tea and reflect on how I have spent years trying to deepen and cultivate greater compassion in all things, but now it seems, the cultivation of humility is the next step logical step to usher in deeper soul cleansing, healing, and transmutation...

My heart is filled with many new and sweet memories...

I am honored to have participated last evening in a service of "Lessons and Carols" at St David's Episcopal Church, in Ashburn, Virginia, near my home. I was profoundly moved by the readings, the exquisite music, and the discernible joy which exuded from all the participants, including the rector, who upon hearing of my experiences embraced me, and invited to be be as involved in the choir or any part of the community's offerings as much as I would like or was able to be. I have rarely experienced such openness in any community that I have belonged to.

Later that night, in the darkness, punctuated by colorful Christmas lights, and warmed by another cup of tea, My thoughts turned lovingly to the dear friend who first introduced me to this community in a circuitous way. She brought me the first group of yoga students to teach out of my home, many years ago, when I was lost, having been more or less forced out of a community I had belonged to. These women unbeknownst to me at the time, were members of this parish, and I gained confidence and my own voice from teaching them.

Later, this same friend, a gifted massage therapist whom I had trained in Reiki, asked me to do healing work with her on a friend and young mom, dying of cancer. Still, much later, when I was looking for a prayer community to belong to, she brought me to St David's, and I have been there ever since, coming to know and appreciate the women who have regularly attended. We have been bridges of support and nets cast with love, embracing each other's pain and rejoicing in each other's graces as well.

I drink my tea in the dark, very humbled indeed, amazed that I had not realized how important this simple thread became a web of connection in my life. The Divine truly works in mysterious ways! And marveling at the many blessings bestowed on me, my soul exclaimed, "Magnificat, anima mea!" My soul truly magnifies the Divine!" I only hope that I may reach that time when my soul blesses everything, always!

I prepared this morning for my last yoga class of the session. It is customary now, for this community to bring lovingly baked goods, which we share while drinking coffee and tea, and like Mary and Elizabeth, we too support one another on our way through life. We are a diverse group, ethnically, politically, and in many other ways - but we are truly one in our diversity.

My lovelies come today, bearing other gifts as well! I am grateful beyond words, but perhaps it is the letter written by one that most deeply touches me, and humility and gratitude swell in my heart with thanksgiving for a deep soul connection made. Once more I am in awe at how Divine Providence brought together two souls experiencing their own personal struggles and challenges, only to experience healing and sacred graces in each other's presence.

This season of surrender, of expectation, pregnant with with blessings, gifts, possibilities, webs of connection, sacredness, and profound insights, and great joy - is perhaps more dear and meaningful to me than Christmas itself.  It is always the preparation we put in the doing of giving a gift that most fills my heart: the love and happiness we see in a loved one when she opens our present!

I am overwhelmed with gratitude and love as I go off to run my errands, and even the depressed young man I often seek out as a cashier at the grocery store, looks up at me in the eye - and says to me - for the very first time - before I can even say it: "YOU have a good day!"

Miracles are everywhere - if we have the eyes to see and the ears to hear!

I drive home, and the thought comes to me - it is not my duty to change anyone or anything. My only duty in this life, is to LOVE...

And this is truly the Season for LOVE!



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