Listen to me

LISTEN TO ME
Author Unknown

Effective immediately, please be aware that there are changes YOU need
to make in YOUR life. These changes need to be completed in order that
I may fulfill My promises to you to grant you peace, joy and happiness
in this life. I apologize for any inconvenience, but after all that I
am doing, this seems very little to ask of you. I know, I already gave
you the 10 Commandments. Keep them. But follow these guidelines, also:

1. QUIT WORRYING
Life has dealt you a blow and all you do is sit and worry. Have you
forgotten that I am here to take all your burdens and carry them for
you? Or do you just enjoy fretting over every little thing that comes
your way?

2. PUT IT ON THE LIST
Something needs to be done or taken care of. Put it on the list. No,
not YOUR list. Put it on MY to-do-list. Let ME be the one to take care
of the problem. I can’t help you until you turn it over to Me. And
although My to-do-list is long, I am after all… God. I can take care
of anything you put into My hands. In fact, if the truth were ever
really known, I take care of a lot of things for you that you never
even realize.

3. TRUST ME
Once you’ve given your burdens to Me, quit trying to take them back.
Trust in Me. Have the faith that I will take care of all your needs.
YOUR problems and your trials. Problems with the kids? Put them on My
list. Problem with finances? Put it on My list. Problems with your
emotional roller coaster? For My sake, put it on My list. I want to
help you. All you have to do is ask.

4. LEAVE IT ALONE
Don’t wake up one morning and say, “Well, I’m feeling much stronger
now, I think I can handle it from here.” Why do you think you are
feeling stronger now? It’s simple. You gave Me your burdens and I’m
taking care of them. I also renew your strength and cover you in my
peace. Don’t you know that if I
give you these problems back, you will be right back where you
started? Leave them with Me and forget about them. Just let Me do my
job.

5. TALK TO ME
I want you to forget a lot of things. Forget what was making you
crazy. Forget the worry and the fretting because you know I’m in
control. But there’s one thing I pray you never forget. Please, don’t
forget to talk to Me – OFTEN! I love YOU! I want to hear your voice. I
want you to include Me in on the things going on in your life. I want
to hear you talk about your friends and family. Prayer is simply you
having a conversation with Me. I want to be your dearest friend.

6. HAVE FAITH
I see a lot of things from up here that you can’t see from where you
are. Have faith in Me that I know what I’m doing. Trust Me; you
wouldn’t want the view from My eyes. I will continue to care for you,
watch over you, and meet your needs. You only have to trust Me.
Although I have a much bigger task
than you, it seems as if you have so much trouble just doing your
simple part. How hard can trust be?

7. SHARE
You were taught to share when you were only two years old. When did
you forget? That rule still applies. Share with those who are less
fortunate than you. Share your joy with those who need encouragement.
Share your laughter with those who haven’t heard any in such a long
time. Share your
tears with those who have forgotten how to cry. Share your faith with
those who have none.

8. BE PATIENT
I managed to fix it so in just one lifetime you could have so many
diverse experiences. You grow from a child to an adult, have children,
change jobs many times, learn many trades, travel to so many places,
meet thousands of people, and experience so much. How can you be so
impatient then when it
takes Me a little longer than you expect to handle something on My to-
do-list? Trust in My timing, for My timing is perfect. Just because I
created the entire universe in only six days, everyone thinks I should
always rush, rush, rush.

9. BE KIND
Be kind to others, for I love them just as much as I love you. They
may not dress like you, or talk like you, or live the same way you do,
but I still love you all. Please try to get along, for My sake. I
created each of you different in some way. It would be too boring if
you were all identical. Please, know I love each of your differences.

10. LOVE YOURSELF
As much as I love you, how can you not love yourself? You were created
by me for one reason only — to be loved, and to love in return. I am
a God of Love. Love Me. Love your neighbors. But also love yourself.
It makes My heart ache when I see you so angry with yourself when
things go wrong. You
are very precious to Me. Don’t ever forget that! With all my heart, I
love YOU!

GOD

The serviceman – stay

A nurse took the tired, anxious serviceman to the bedside. Your son
is here,” she said to the old man. She had to repeat the words several
times before the patient’s eyes opened. Heavily sedated because of the
pain of his heart attack, he dimly saw the young man in the Marine Corps uniform
standing outside the oxygen tent. He reached out his hand. The Marine
wrapped his toughened fingers around the old man’s limp ones, squeezing a
message of love and encouragement. The nurse brought a chair so that the Marine
could sit alongside the bed. Nights are long in hospitals but all through the
night the young Marine sat there in the poorly lighted ward, holding the
old man’s hand and offering him words of love and strength. Occasionally, the
nurse suggested that the Marine move away and rest awhile. He refused.
Whenever the nurse came into the ward, the Marine was oblivious of her and of
the night noises of the hospital – the clanking of the oxygen tank, the
laughter of the night staff members exchanging greetings, the cries and moans
of the other patients. Now and then she heard him say a few gentle words.
The dying man said nothing, only held tightly to his son all through the
night.

Along towards dawn, the old man died. The Marine placed the lifeless
hand he had been holding and went to tell the nurse. While she did what she
had to do, he waited. Finally, she returned. She started to offer words of
sympathy, but the Marine interrupted her. “Who was that man?” he
asked. The nurse was startled, “He was your father” she answered. “No, he
wasn’t,” the Marine replied. “I never saw him before in my life.” “Then why
didn’t you say something when I took you to him?” “I knew right away, there
had been a mistake, but I also knew he needed his son, and his son just wasn’t
here.
When I realized that he was too sick to tell whether or not I was
his son, I knew how much he needed me so I stayed.”
The next time someone needs you…be there. Stay!

The bird that talked – Inspirational Story

There is an old story about a fellow who lived alone and went to a pet store
to buy a parrot. He thought the bird might fill some of his lonely hours.
The very next day, however, he came back to complain, “That bird doesn’t
talk.”

The store owner asked if he had a mirror in its cage, and the man said he
didn’t. “Oh, parrots love mirrors,” he explained. “When he sees his
reflection in the mirror, he’ll just start talking away.” So he sold him a
birdcage mirror.

The bird owner was back the next day to gripe that his parrot still hadn’t
said a word. “That’s very peculiar,” allowed the pet expert. “How about a
swing? Birds really love these little swings, and a happy parrot is a
talkative parrot.” So the man bought a swing, took it home, and installed it
in the cage.

But he was back the next day with the same story. “Does he have a ladder to
climb?” the salesman asked. “That just has to be the problem. Once he has a
ladder, he’ll probably talk your ear off!” So the fellow bought a ladder.

The man was back at the pet store when it opened the next day. From the look
on his face, the owner knew something was wrong. “Didn’t your parrot like
the ladder?” he asked. His repeat customer looked up and said, “The parrot
died.”

“I’m so sorry,” the stunned businessman said. “Did he ever say anything?”

“Well, yes. He finally talked just before he died. In a weak little voice,
he asked me, “Don’t they sell any bird seed at that pet store?'”

Some of us have mistakenly thought that happiness consists of lining our
cages with toys, gadgets, and other stuff. Excessive consumption has become
the hallmark of our life. “Whoever has the most toys wins” seems to be the
likely candidate to be the bumper sticker for an entire culture. But is it so?

There is a spiritual hunger in the human heart that can’t be satisfied by
seeing one’s own image reflected back in vanity mirrors, playing with our
grown-up toys, or climbing the corporate ladder. Our hearts need real
nourishment. The love of family and friends, relationships over the pursuit
of more things, personal integrity, a secure connection to God –these are
the things that feed the soul.

Have you chosen a life course that leads to a destination that matters?

Which one are you – Moral of the story

Once upon a time a daughter complained to her father that her life was miserable and that she didn’t know how she was going to make it. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed just as one problem was solved, another one soon followed. Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire.

Once the three pots began to boil, he placed potatoes in one pot, eggs in the second pot and ground coffee beans in the third pot. He then let them sit and boil, without saying a word to his daughter. The daughter, moaned and impatiently waited, wondering what he was doing. After twenty minutes he turned off the burners. He took the potatoes out of the pot and placed them in a bowl. He pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. He then ladled the coffee out and placed it in a cup.

Turning to her, he asked. “Daughter, what do you see?” “Potatoes, eggs and coffee,” she hastily replied.

“Look closer”, he said, “and touch the potatoes.” She did and noted that they were soft.

He then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.

Finally, he asked her to sip the coffee. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.

“Father, what does this mean?” she asked.

He then explained that the potatoes, the eggs and coffee beans had each faced the same adversity-the boiling water. However, each one reacted differently. The potato went in strong, hard and unrelenting, but in boiling water, it became soft and weak. The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard. However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.

“Which one are you?” he asked his daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a potato, an egg, or a coffee bean?”

Moral: In life, things happen around us, things happen to us, but the only thing that truly matters is how you choose to react to it and what you make out of it. Life is all about learning, adopting and converting all the struggles that we experience into something positive.

How heavy is your bag

HOW HEAVY IS YOUR BAG?
Author Unknown

One of my teachers had each one of us bring a clear plastic bag and a
sack of potatoes. For every person we’d refuse to forgive in our life,
we were told to choose a potato, write on it the name and date, and
put it in the plastic bag. Some of our bags, as you can imagine, were
quite
heavy.

We were then told to carry this bag with us everywhere for one week,
putting it beside our bed at night, on the car seat when driving, next
to our desk at work.

The hassle of lugging this around with us made it clear what a weight
we were carrying spiritually, and how we had to pay attention to it
all the time to not forget, and keep leaving it in embarrassing
places.

Naturally, the condition of the potatoes deteriorated to a nasty
slime. This was a great metaphor for the price we pay for keeping our
pain and heavy negativity!

Too often we think of forgiveness as a gift to the other person, and
while that’s true, it clearly is also a gift for ourselves!

So the next time you decide you can’t forgive someone, ask yourself…

Isn’t MY bag heavy enough?

Check your attitude

Check your attitude

No matter what actions we perform in this world, we receive their fruits. For this reason, we should always keep an account of ourselves. We should not try to keep track of others, of how many sins others have committed, how many mistakes they have made, or how much more advanced thay are than we. Instead, we should always remember what we have done and what we have to do in the future. We should check to see how much self-control we have developed, how much equanimity there is in our minds, how much steadfastness we have achieved. We should check to see how much we have been able to rid ourselves of our desires, our anger, our jealousy, and our tendency to hate other people, to rejoice at their misfortune, and to feel sad when we see them advance. We should see how much compassion we have acquired, how much we have learned to love honesty and truthfulness, how loving we have become. We should always be aware of our faults and always try to increase our virtuous qualities. Above all, we should check our attitude. It is our inner attitude and feeling that determine our behavior. Not only that, it is these that determine our experience of the world.” ((Muktananda, I Have Become Alive, 100)

Lessons of Love

Lessons of Love

A ninety-one-year-old woman died after living a long, dignified life.
When she met God, she asked Him about something that had
long bothered her:

“If Man was created in God’s image, and if all men are created
equal, why do people treat each other so badly?”

God replied that each person who enters our life has a unique
lesson to teach us. And it is only through these lessons that we learn
about life, people, relationships, and God. This confused the woman,
so God began to explain:

“When someone lies to you, it teaches you that things are not always as
they seem. The truth is often far beneath the surface. Look beyond the
masks people wear if you want to know their heart. And remove your own
masks to let people know yours.

“When someone steals from you, it teaches you that nothing is forever.
Always appreciate what you have, for you never know when you might
lose it. And never, ever, take your friends and family for granted because
today is the only guarantee you have.

“When someone inflicts an injury upon you, it teaches you that the
human state is a fragile one. Protect and take care of your body as best
you can; it’s the only thing you are sure to have forever.

“When someone mocks you, it teaches you that no two people are alike.
When you encounter people who are different from you, don’t judge them
by how they look or act; instead, base your opinion on the contents of
their hearts.

“When someone breaks your heart, it teaches you that loving someone
does not always mean that person will love you back. But don’t turn your
back on love because when you find the right person, the joy that that one
person brings will make up for all the past hurts put together. Times ten.

“When someone holds a grudge against you, it teaches you that everyone
makes mistakes. When you are wronged, the most virtuous thing you can
do is forgive the offender without pretense. “Forgiving those who have
hurt us is the most difficult, the most courageous, and the most noble thing
Man can do.

“When a loved one is unfaithful to you, it teaches you that resisting
temptation is Man’s greatest challenge. Be vigilant in your resistance
against all temptation. By doing so, you will be rewarded with an
enduring sense of satisfaction far greater than the temporary pleasure
by which you were tempted.

“When someone cheats you, it teaches you that greed is the root of all
evil. Aspire to make your dreams come true, no matter how lofty they
may be. Do not feel guilty about your success, but never let an
obsession with achieving your goals lead you to engage in malevolent
activities.

“When someone ridicules you, it teaches you that nobody is perfect.
Accept people for their merits and be tolerant of their flaws. Do not
ever reject someone for imperfections over which they have no control.”
Upon hearing the Lord’s wisdom, the old woman became concerned
that there were no lessons to be learned from Man’s good deeds. God
replied that Man’s capacity to love is the greatest gift he has. At the root
of all kindness is love, and each act of love also teaches us a lesson.
The woman’s curiosity deepening, God once again began to explain:

“When someone loves us, it teaches us that love, kindness, charity,
honesty, humility, forgiveness, and acceptance can counteract all the
evil in the world.
“For every good deed, there is one less evil deed. Man alone has the
power to control the balance between good and evil, but because the
lessons of love are not taught often enough, the power is too often
abused.

“When you enter someone’s life, whether by plan, chance, or
coincidence, consider what your lesson will be. Will you teach love
or a harsh lesson of reality?

“When you die, will your life have resulted in more loving or hurting?
More comfort or pain? More joy or sadness? Each one of us has
power over the balance of love in the world. Use it wisely.
“Don’t miss an opportunity to nudge the world’s scale in the right
direction.

“Pass these lessons of love on to those you love and to those you
have hurt.
“For each person who receives this, there will be a little less evil in
the world and a little more love.”

Sadness (reading from The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie)

Ultimately, to grieve our losses means to surrender to our feelings.
So many of us have lost so much, said so many good-byes, have been through so many changes. We may want to hold back the tides of change, not because the change isn’t good, but because we have had so much change, so much loss.
Sometimes, when we are in the midst of pain and grief, we become shortsighted, like members of a tribe described in the movie
Out of Africa.
“If you put them in priseon”, one character said, describignn this tribe, “they die”.
“Why/” asked another character. “Because they can’t grasp the idea that they’ll be let out one day. They thik it’s permanent, so they die.”

The power of God

THE POWER OF GOD
Author Unknown

Have you ever been down and out and nobody seems to be around for you to
talk to…THAT’S GOD…he wants you to talk to him.

Have you ever been just sitting there and all of a sudden you feel like
doing something nice for someone you care for…THAT’S GOD…he talks to you
through the Holy Spirit.

Have you ever been thinking about somebody that you haven’t seen in a long
time and then next thing you know you see them or receive a phone call from
them…THAT’S GOD…there is no such thing as “coincidence.”

Have you ever received something wonderful that you didn’t even ask for,
like money in the mail, a debt that had mysteriously been cleared, or a
coupon to a department store where you had just seen something you wanted,
but couldn’t afford…THAT’S GOD…he knows the desires of your heart…

Have you ever been in a situation and you had no clue how it is going to get
better, but now you look back on it…THAT’S GOD… he passes us through
tribulation to see a brighter day…

ALWAYS LOOK ON THE INSIDE

ALWAYS LOOK ON THE INSIDE
Author Unknown

I remember reading a story once about a man who was exploring some
caves by the seashore. In one of the caves he found a canvas bag with
a bunch of hardened clay balls. It was like someone had rolled up some
clay and left them out in the sun to bake. They didn’t look like much,
but they intrigued
the man so he took the bag out of the cave with him.

As he strolled along the beach, to pass the time, he would throw the
clay balls one at a time out into the ocean as far as he could throw.

He thought little about it until he dropped one of the balls and it
cracked open on a rock. Inside was a beautiful, precious stone.
Excited, the man started breaking open the remaining clay balls. Each
contained a similar treasure. He found thousands of dollars worth of
jewels in the 20 or so clay balls he had left, then it struck him.

He had been on the beach a long time. He had thrown maybe 50 or 60 of
the clay balls with their hidden treasure into the ocean waves.
Instead of thousands of dollars in treasure, he could have had tens of
thousands, but he just threw it all away.

You know sometimes, it’s like that with people. We look at someone,
maybe even ourselves, and we see the external clay vessel. It doesn’t
look like much from the outside. It isn’t always beautiful or
sparkling, so we discount it; we see that person as less important
than someone more beautiful or stylish or well known or wealthy.

But we have not taken the time to find the treasure hidden inside that
person. There is a treasure hidden in every one of us. We are
wonderfully made. Not just our physical bodies, our spiritual selves,
which are sometimes hidden from others by the *earthen vessel*

But if you take the time to get to know that person, and if you ask
the Spirit to show you that person the way He sees them, then the clay
begins to peel away and the brilliant gem begins to shine forth.

The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly
smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration
that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him
and is willing to trust him with his friendship.