Saturday, December 26, 2009

New You's resolutions

As we move into the new year, there is a natural tendency to look back and assess what we have or haven't accomplished. This year, my accomplishments are mostly personal. I didn't speak at large conferences or create new books, but what I have achieved in my own heart, mind, body, and soul is something I feel very good about, and something that allows me to serve more deeply now and in the future.

I wanted to help my body feel joyous again and so I began with ten sit-ups a day last January, and gradually increased. Now I'm up to 150 in the mornings, hiking each week, doing tai chi, and feeling better than ever. As a result of this self care I can better allow the energy to flow through me in prayer and meditation and better serve because my energy levels are higher. It took patience, perseverance, and a willingness to commit time to myself. We weren't taught that self-care is important, but in truth it is essential. I commit to more of it in 2010, and to supporting this community in learning that self-care, far from being selfish, is the greatest way we can allow for more service to the world.

I wanted to get rid of past life fears that plagued me this year and so I was guided to a regression that changed my life. I feel God again more strongly than ever in my heart. I have rid myself of past life guilt that seemed to constantly attract more hassle and pain to my life just when things were going well. I released a lifetime in which I starved to death and dropped a physical size within six weeks! It has been remarkable.

I wanted to learn to love as God loves more and more each day, and so God gave me opportunities to love others in spite of their anger, misunderstanding, and pain. I have seen how love transforms hurting hearts and have been glad to be an instrument of God's peace. I continue to pray to experience and express God's love more and more each day.

So when you make up your New Year's resolutions about what you want to achieve or get in your outer world, don't forget to add a few things you want to achieve in your inner world. God hears and answers those prayers. Ask for peace of mind, the security of knowing you are loved and cared for, the experience of God's love in your heart. Ask to see the goodness in the world, and to view your life with gratitude rather than with worry and fear. These things are the eternal qualities that we are all seeking, and committing to having them in your life will change your outer world as well.

I wish each one of you a Joyous New Year, a very Happy Holiday Season, and a love beyond reason rising up within your very own hearts. I will be praying for all of you at the stroke of midnight on the 31st and asking God to continue to bless you with an awareness of His very great love.

God bless you, and thank you for being part of my journey,
Ann

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Hello dear friends and Merry Christmas to you all!

May you all have a blessed and wonderful holiday season, however
you celebrate. Since Christmas is the tradition of my
upbringing,
click here for a card from the Angels and me.

Love,
Ann

ps - The beautiful version of "Silent Night" is by
Kaleah Laroche

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Be the light that we are

I felt incredible JOY in the angels' message today. They love us so much. Lately I've been plugging in to feel the love of God every day and it feels amazing. I sit quietly, turn on some beautiful music and ask to feel myself living and abiding in the heart of God. I pray for God to pave my way with magic and miracles every day and to fill me, and my loved ones, and all my mind, heart, body, soul, emotions, friends, family, dogs, home, and business with His love and His Grace. I ask to be the eyes, the hands, the mouth for God's love. And the more I pray these prayers, the more I sit in silent reception of God's love, and the more I ask to feel God in my heart, the more I find I must give, share, and express that very same love.

It is in the simplest pleasures in life that I find God. Why wait till we have our big dreams to feel good? Why not feel good right here and right now. If the bills are there so what? We'll pay them eventually. I had to get new tires on my car last week, which was quite an expensive proposition right before Christmas, but God can figure out how to pay it. I'm responsible and manage finances to the best of my ability so a surprise bill is not about to ruin my day. I walked to Walmart, next to the tire store, got some yarn and knitting needles and started making myself a scarf while I waited. Now my car is safe and I have a fuzzy blue new scarf. LIfe is too short to spend in worry. Why not search out the joy?

A good cup of cocoa is an excuse to celebrate life, as is the company of good friends. But when we don't have people or stuff filling us up with love and cheer, we can always create it! Love and cheer live inside each of us, waiting to be found and shared. When I feel cheap I get something small for someone else so I feel rich again. When I feel unloved, I do something loving for another so I can feel God flowing through me. When I want to feel the holiday spirit I create it by sharing it with others. I hand out candy canes to total strangers - checkout clerks, postal people, you name it. They light up like little kids. Everyone wants to be remembered. A random act of kindness given with joy can change a person's life. It will change yours too.

So many people are lonely this time of year. So many people feel unloved. What if you smiled and someone in the store or offered a kind word that let them know they are special? What if you reached out to a neighbor who lost a loved one and helped them remember they are not alone. What if you emailed someone randomly just to tell them they are loved? I frequently have random gratitude attacks for the people in my life and when it happens I stop everything and write to tell them. Why whine if you are alone when you can volunteer and be amongst other good and caring people and help the world while you are at it?

We are in charge of our spirits - not the outside world, not the other people in it, not the stuff, the money, the circumstances - just us. No matter what is going on in our lives, no matter what the challenges, we can give of our kind and loving hearts. And in doing so we unplug the pipes of our soul, and allow God's love and the soul's joy to flow through our hearts and into the world. The smiles that people return are payment enough. The kindness that flows back to you is worth more than all the riches in the world.

Truly the angels have taught me that the greatest gift we can give others is the present of our presence. Funny thing... it is the greatest gift we can give ourselves as well. Nothing feels better than being who we truly are. We must remain centered in ourselves of course, take care of ourselves and pay our own bills first, fill our wells in the fountain of God's love by sitting and receiving and breathing, but from that space, you will have love, peace, and joy to share. It is always there, waiting to be unleashed, waiting to be expressed, waiting to flow to you, through you, and from you into the arms of a waiting world.

This Christmas and this Hanukkah, let's all strive to be the lights that we are, if only offering one extra kind word a day, an expression of gratitude when someone gifts us, or at least praying a prayer for a total stranger after we pray for our own well being. It is in giving we receive, and in receiving that we give.

Happy holy holly jolly holiday week to you all!
Love,
Ann

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Caring for yourself

The angel message today nearly brought me to tears because I could feel their love pouring through me as I typed. I have been feeling so blessed lately. I have worked hard inside of myself over the years to live in a space of God's love and to trust in His goodness. And lately I feel that my cup runneth over. I have to share this feeling with others. It comes from the inside, and from a feeling of being connected with God.

I was talking with a few friends this week about how important it is to take care of ourselves first. If we don't, we have nothing authentic to give. If we don't take care of ourselves, we "give to get" and we get upset when others don't give back in return. If however, we DO take care of ourselves, then we give without expectation or attachment, and do so because it is a joy to share the love we feel inside our own hearts. I am not talking about just material giving - that's nice and it IS fun when we can do it, but material giving is far less significant than giving of our hearts and souls. It is the sharing of our hearts that we all crave - the connection that arises when you let the love of God flow from you towards another soul - the kind word that arises naturally when you think of someone who has touched your life, the prayer that you pray for a friend in need, the smile for a stranger, the expression of gratitude and appreciation that, while it may seem small to you, could mean the world to another. These are the gifts of our hearts that mean the most. I know a kind word will never be forgotten in my own heart - it is something I treasure. And when I see the joy that sharing my heart can give another, I know God has worked through me. This is the feeling we all want inside of ourselves - to know THIS love pouring through our own hearts.

But in order to give this way, we must take care of our own needs, starting with our spirits, our bodies, our minds, and our emotions. It doesn't take as much time as people think. It just takes being in the moment, checking in with yourself and making sure you listen to your body, mind, and soul every single day. It is not the BIG things that change the quality of our lives, but rather the day to day simple decisions. Do we eat what our bodies are asking us to eat? Do we take the time to sit, breathe, and ask the angels and God to fill our hearts, each day, if only for a few minutes? Do we reach out for help or comfort when we are in need? Or do we fill ourselves with the LIE that we are not worthy of such care, and that life is too hard, too complicated, too busy to do these small and simple acts of self-love. I used to believe that horrid little lie that society programs inside of us. Once exposed however, it has no more control over our lives. Once we turn to God's Truth - that we ARE loved and have all the time we need for the things that truly matter - life begins to arrange itself more gracefully around us.

I used to think I had too many all-important tasks to take care of myself. It was ridiculous. There were days when I answered up to 150+ emails and 30 calls. I rushed around to accomplish all the busy errands I thought I HAD to do each day. I worked 6-7 days a week and was at everyone's beck and call. I never had time to take care of myself. When I was younger I would whine, "I take care of everybody else God, and yet nobody cares about me." What rubbish! The angels drummed sanity into my head. "Ann, you do not take care enough about you, and until you do, no one else will. It is you, Ann, who are teaching the world how to treat you. God cares about you, but YOU don't care about you." Those things were hard to hear, but they were the Truth, and my life didn't change until I embraced their words and made changes in my own heart.

The universe is vibrational - it echoes back to us exactly what we put out either consciously or unconsciously. I was putting out a signal that said, "I am too busy to take care of myself," and the universe echoed it back... "Ok, you are going to be kept too busy to take care of yourself." Over the years, I finally realized I am worthy of my own time and attention and as I care for myself I can better care for and share with others. Now the universe echoes this back..."You are worthy of your own time and attention and we will help you take care of yourself so you can care for and share with others." As I learned to honor my own time the number of emails and calls is either reasonable, or I am given the grace to handle them when my heart dictates. I work less insane hours and am able to give more. I stopped over-complicating my life with self-imposed deadlines about what must be done when, and I started living by heart. I am still quite busy but that 'busy-ness' involves time in my schedule to take care of me. It is a busy-ness birthed in the heart, not the head, and somehow, magically, all I need is provided, and I have the time to do things that truly matter. Things that don't matter so much - proving myself to others or to me - have fallen by the wayside. As a result I have a lot more love and joy to share.

So in this busy holiday season, breathe, take a few minutes to sit with God and pray each day. Drop into your hearts and ask, "What truly matters to me right now, today, in this moment." And live accordingly. The smallest decisions, to care for yourself, when made with love and authenticity, can dramatically alter your future.

I wish you all a week of deep peace, abiding love, and joy.
Big hugs,
Ann

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Gifts of self

I love the holiday season. It gives me a huge excuse to share my love with the people who have blessed me and been part of my life all year. This year, my friends and I have agreed that we don't need much stuff. In fact many of us have been clearing out stuff all year. We only want to give each other gifts from the heart that we can use, enjoy, eat, or be uplifted by. And it has been a lot of fun locking myself in the craft room and brainstorming presents I can make with the things I have on hand.

Perhaps the most meaningful gift I ever gave was a letter to my parents when they celebrated a special year. I knew that no material present would mean a thing compared to my heartfelt gratitude for who they have been in my life and how we have all grown. I was near tears writing the letter and they felt very loved receiving it.

So many times in my work talking to people who have passed on, the folks in heaven tell me that they were overwhelmed by the outpouring of love shown to them at their funerals - that while they forgot many of the things people gave them throughout life, this love was what they would remember forever. Once a guy in spirit joked that we should have our funerals while we are alive so we can enjoy all the love and good comments! Not a bad idea!!! And while I'm not planning mine, I DO believe we should share our hearts, our gratitude, and our love, and talents with one another, not just during the holidays but all year round. I am blessed with friends who let me do so, and who share a great deal of love and kindness with me in return.

Why wait to share your love with someone? Why withhold kindness? Why not express what you are feeling when you feel it rather than worrying about what people will think if you do? We need one another on this earth. You know how good it feels when someone gives you a smile - why not be the one giving that gift to another? I walk around smiling frequently, and it is so much fun to see people's faces light up when they are shown a bit of human love and kindness.

Of course there will always be those who scowl at a smile and who mistrust a kind word, but that's their issue! I'll never forget being on the highway with a friend, trying to get out of the way of the car tailgating me. When I finally was able to change lanes, the driver put his hand out the window and did what I thought was wave to me. I waved back with a big smile. My friend just about died laughing, "He is flipping you off," she said!! We laughed even harder, blessed and prayed for him to have a better day, smiled and waved even more!! That poor sad sorry soul didn't know what to make of us. That was his problem. We were happy! We shared our love and prayers, and that was a gift to us whether he was willing to receive it or not.

So don't hold back on sharing the eternal gifts of your love, kindness, gratitude, and talent. It is in the giving of ourselves, our real selves, that God flows through us and into the world. In these moments truly we are blessed to share of our hearts. The angels say often through my friend Summer (www.summerbacon.com), "What the world wants from you, is you." And that is a truth. Some will run from you when you share of your heart and others will come closer, but life will certainly sort itself out into a magnificent and glorious reality when you let your real light and your real love shine without fear.

May you know the beautiful light within you and the present of the Presence of God in your life this holiday season.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Don't jam up the love

The angels recently told me I have an old habit of feeling like I had to tone down my joy when others in the world are suffering. I just couldn't see that anymore, so I asked them to show me how I do that. Oops! I forgot the joyful/gentle part of that request! And so I noticed that I toned myself down just a tiny bit when around a friend who was having a harder time. I saw a few thoughts in my head that said, don't rub in how good you feel around her when she doesn't feel that great. And within three hours a head cold started to set in!! I have had such a powerful flow of energy running through me lately that when I jam it up in any way at all, its like trying to damn up a river. My body always lets me know!

And while it is true that we can always blame outer circumstances, better to go within and own the lessons, give thanks and move on. I sat on the couch with a painful scratchy feeling trying to possess my throat, and rather than whining, acknowledged the lesson. "Ok God, I see how I did this to myself. I forgive myself, and want to move on and let the joy flow through me again and be well." Since the cold setting in was promising to be a nasty one if I didn't get my spiritual act together, I figured I better pull out all the stops. It was SO tempting to whine but I knew whining would cement the misery in place! So instead, I just dropped into my heart... "What do I want here?" "I want comfort - a hug for starters because I feel yucky." So I sat still, asked the angels for a hug, and fully expected it to arrive. Within minutes their warmth surrounded me. I asked them to help me get back in the flow of grace, to remove all erroneous thoughts from me, and help me release my old habit of toning myself down. I felt more warm heat flow through the top of my head and sat there basking in their light while focusing on my own in a meditation as well.

After I fixed my emotional/vibrational state, the next step was to ask for guidance. So I did and immediately thoughts of warm salt water popped in my head. Off to gargle with salt water. I drank it by the bucket the next day, so much so that I felt I was going to merge with the vibration of the ocean. That thought gave me great peace and comfort as well!! All the anti-oxidants in the house were pulled out, as well garlic, my vitamin C, and enough water with lemon or vinegar in it to kill anything. And within just two days the cold was nearly gone. I was tired but avoided what could have been a miserable sickness during my Thanksgiving break. Instead I was able to have dinner with friends, celebrate the gifts in our lives, and know that all sickness, misery, and pain, is simply a result of resisting or jamming up the love that wants to flow through us naturally. It was a good lesson, and I truly do give thanks for it.

I also give thanks for you, and for all the souls on this mailing list because I know even though we may never meet, our lights touch in the realms of spirit and we support one another in this journey here upon the earth. I keep you all in my prayers daily and ask God to bless you and all whom you love. May you too know the light of God's love as it flows through your own heart, every minute of every day, and may you know the bright and beautiful souls that you all are.

Love and hugs,
Ann

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Loving it all!

The last 9 years of my life have been an exploration in self love. It all began when I was dating a man who was very wounded and very angry. And yet, this very man introduced me to my friend Summer Bacon, who channels Dr. Peebles, an angel who had been working with me most of my life, unbeknownst to me, and who has mentored me in every aspect of self love and self-acceptance. I used to think I could only love myself when I was being kind, "holy," and in a good mood. And so I faked it often. I pretended to be happy when I was not. I tried to love people whose souls I could love but whose personalities were unthinkably cruel to me. I put up with abuse, as if martyrdom was a higher calling than happiness. And I pretended to forgive when my soul was still crying in pain. I was trying to be angelic without accepting anything within me that was human.

Little by little God ripped my lies apart until I could accept myself in any given moment.

I learned to accept and love myself when I was upset, and so the need for upset became less and less because now I am no longer fighting my own truths within. If someone is unkind to me now, I can either listen with love or move away with love because I no longer need to defend my own goodness. I know who I am.

If I am sad, I accept that this simply means I am longing for some greater love or kindness in the moment and that means I love myself. I can even appreciate the beauty beneath a good wracking, sobbing cry when necessary because it is innocent, human, and just an authentic cry for love. It doesn't mean anything more than that. On the few occasions I still need to cry, I just ask the angels to come in and comfort me and they do. We'd never judge a baby crying, would we? Why must we judge ourselves?

All these lessons came to the forefront of my life a few months ago when a longtime friend who was in dire pain unleashed torrents of rage, frustration, and pain on me. I had attempted to say encouraging things that unfortunately came across as being unrealistic. I had mentioned a few challenges I was having that were nothing compared to her own and came across as insensitive. And while I knew in my heart of hearts that my only intention ever had been to be supportive and loving, I also knew that my friend's perception of my comments was absolutely real for her. Because I truly cared about her and sensed the depth of her pain, I listened and did my best to understand her point of view. It wasn't easy. But by the grace of God (because I was praying) I was able to hear her perceptions of me, my statements, and the pain beneath them. I saw her soul crying out for love in an unthinkably trying time in her life. I was able to listen and acknowledge her point of view and promise to adjust my speaking so as not to trigger more pain in her life. And I know, looking back, that I was only able to do this because I know myself as a good and loving person, and had no need to react or defend my statements. I just wanted to love and understand her instead.

I thank God I've learned this level of self love or a dear friendship would have been wasted over my angry reactions, and while it would be easy to blame her instead of taking responsibility for the creations in my life, I now want to take responsibility for my choices, perceptions, and reactions to life. I want to choose love over, and over, and over, no matter how hard it is. I know that had I reacted defensively, this situation would have escalated into unthinkable pain for both of us. I did get off the phone and cry my eyes out, because it hurt. And I accepted those tears as tears of self love because while I love my friend I wanted to be treated with greater kindness in the future. Through a lot of prayer and honest dialogue, we worked it out and all is well again. I give her credit for being willing to communicate even when it came out so angrily - it was her soul crying out for love underneath it all, and it was the best she could do at the time. It totally created movement and growth in our relationship. It took courage on her part, and a lot of compassion on mine. We have now reached deeper levels of understanding with one another as we continue to grow and mature spiritually.

If you can truly love yourself in all your moods, and in all situations (and it is a choice), then you can truly share love with others. If you can understand that when you are angry you are crying for love; when you are sad your are mourning losing something you loved; when you are frustrated you are wanting to understand how to create more in life, etc., then... when you see those darker emotions in another you can understand them as well because we are all, deep-down, human and made of the same stuff.

So practicing true self love and acceptance, far from being narcissistically selfish is instead a gift to the world. When you truly know the loving and kind and well-intentioned soul that you ARE, then you can see beneath the pain of the world and see that desire for love and connection in others as well, no matter how they act or behave. You can realize you are a good person even if you aren't 'perfect' according to some standard in the moment. You can create and manifest more good in your life from a place of love ever, than from a place of self-deprecation and self-criticism.

You are perfect just the way you are, just as a rosebud is perfect in and amongst the thorns before it blooms into the magnificent rose.

May you have a week filled with wonder and stand in awe of your own bright and beautiful souls.
Ann

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Don't be afraid to feel

After channeling this week's message, the angels told me to read the reviews for one of my books. That sounded odd, but when I get such clear guidance, I just go do it. So I found "Whispers of the Spirit" on amazon.com and read people's thoughts on it. Most were very nice. One, however, really caught my attention! The reviewer said he first thought "Good lord, this woman is an emotional basketcase. How can anyone tolerate her manic depressive swings? Moreover, how did they tolerate her at Honeywell? What's more, why am I reading 3 pages of this process?" ... He kindly went on to say he understood it was a journey of transformation. I really liked this review. it was honest and the person sharing it shared their own soul as well.

I could see why someone reading it would think me unbalanced. The book was written over 13 years ago when I was just beginning to understand the spiritual path, and to wake up to the fact that what I thought would make me happy in life - marriage, job, success, was not making me anywhere near happy. The truth is my chemistry was fine - it was my soul that was in need of healing.

So many people in our society are afraid to feel deeply. I was afraid to publish that book because I knew people would judge me for feeling so deeply and being so honest about it. The manuscript sat in a box on a shelf for 11 years until the angels finally poked and prodded me enough to let it out into the world. The feedback has been awesome. I'm dedicated to proclaiming in public, "It's ok to be human!!" We are here to do it!! And in that humanity - in each and every moment, in every feeling - be it dark or light - we can dig deep, find love within us, and find God. That's the real business of life.

When you have the courage to ask to truly know God's presence in your life, you will face everything that is illusion within. You'll face your fears, angers, insecurities, etc., and you'll feel crazy at times doing it. You may swing between great joy and deep despair. And you will do so because you have the courage to do what we are here on this earth to do - to dig within our own spirits and find the illusions of separation that have held us bound for centuries, held us in a lie that we are anything less than God's love, and have kept us worrying more about what the world thinks than about being who really are. Carolyn Myss, a great spiritual teacher has an awesome tape series called "The Dark Night of the Soul" in which she dives into this phenomena. When you ask to know God you have to slug through a lot of your own muck before you find the glorious light within. It can be hard. It is not always pretty. But it is SO worth the effort, for when you work on yourself from the inside out, you allow divine grace to be your guide, and you allow the magic and the wonder of your own soul to unfold out into the world. You become the lighthouse that guides others safely to their own spirit's deep expressions of love.

I look back at my own life and no longer regret the darker spaces. They were hard. I hated being in them when I was there. But as I moved forward I've learned that surrendering to who we are in any given moment is the quickest way back into the light. If you're upset, admit it to yourself (vs. dumping on others!) and figure out what it is you want to create. If you're sad, seek out healthy comfort and nurturing and look at what you want to create next. If you're jealous, ask yourself what parts of your own subconscious don't believe you are worthy of that which you want. Running from our own darkness gives it total control over us. Looking it square in the eye, acknowledging it, and looking for the love beneath it gives our soul great power.

Years ago, I think it might have been easier if I could have blamed chemistry or some outer circumstances for my explorations into the insecurities and fears within my own spirit. The more light I would bring into my body, mind, and soul, the more it would expose my illusions of separation - much as you would see the cobwebs so more clearly when you bring a flashlight into a darkened room. I did feel crazy at times. Instead, I was learning to live, as the angels say with great humor, "IN sanity" vs. the insanity that we buy into by trying to be who are not in any given moment.

Lately its been my joy that I am allowing to flow in great measure. In the past I had to tone it down to make others comfortable when they are not as happy. In the past I've been afraid to express all the love in my heart for fear of being misunderstood. And now I don't care! Its wonderful and freeing to be ok with who you are. If I have one purpose on this planet I'm sure it is to be incredibly, deeply, human and to let everyone know that every moment and every feeling is holy, beautiful, and perfect as we continue to evolve into something even more.

So when you feel your emotions stirring, feel them deeply, and then dig even deeper. They are beacons guiding you to your soul's deepest truths. Feeling your darker feelings will not attract negative events to you if you can find the love beneath them. Feeling your joyous feelings is a gift to the entire world. Allow your hearts to shine forth in truth in this lifetime and that is where the world will echo back to you its own. You will attract those of like mind and heart and repel those who do not belong. You will acknowledge the love inside yourself and the universe will echo that back as well. You deserve to know that all within you, in truth, is love. Seek it out, be it, and your life will be blessed.

Have a blessed and joyous week, and if you're not in that space, love yourself anyway :)
Love and hugs,
Ann

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Let your light shine

After my past life regression* a few weeks ago, my soul has felt lighter by the minute. It is amazing to get outside of a lifetime and see it through the eyes of your soul and the love and wisdom of your guides. It is miraculous to know the absolute value in even the most desolate and frightening of times. It is freeing! And so these past few weeks, I have felt the love of God flowing through my heart even more strongly than ever before. In fact, I can't even watch TV now. All I want to do in spare time is listen to uplifting music, or be out in nature, and exist in this heavenly bliss of knowing the goodness of my own soul, minus all the baggage of undeserved guilt and shame I've carried around for centuries. I know in time the experience will integrate and I may be able to enjoy other forms of entertainment besides the music or the glorious symphony found in the silence of my own soul, but for now I'm thoroughly enjoying this phase! Post mystical experience bliss can be both uplifting and at the same time soul-shaking.

The soul shaking part comes from the fact that its terrifying at times to surrender to such a HUGE force of love. We all want it. We all want to feel God's presence. But the more we do, the more the ego starts kicking and screaming. "I'm not in control!" It never truly was, but now it knows it is dying and something more beautiful is being brought to light inside. I sit in meditation and feel a force so strong it shakes me, and I know that this shaking is only coming from the part of me trying to hang on, to stay in charge, to plan out my life. The force of love wants to take over and carry me along the path God wants for me. So I sit, breathe, relax, receive, surrender, and let go more deeply. And then warm bliss spreads throughout my being.

THIS is the feeling of being "in love" that we all crave. This is existing IN God's love - in a space of knowing who you are and what you are made of. I have no delusions about staying in this space every minute of my life but while I'm here I love it. I'm working very hard to memorize it, and allow for it to continue to flow in my life. It colors my existence. I want to be loving to everyone else in this space. I want to focus on all that is good, and even the challenges in life aren't a big deal in the moment. I took a walk in nature Saturday and saw only God's miraculous beauty. The cold water of the creek washing over my toes, the rustle of the autumn leaves, the crisp scent of fall in the air - it felt like a slice of heaven.

I am human. I know there will always be challenging times, new things to look at inside of myself, and new ways to grow, but I can vouch for the fact that for every time I've gone through a dark night of the soul, for every time I have felt life challenge the very notion of what I'm made of, I've always come out into greater light.

If you are in a challenging time, having a little whine is fine, but then really dig in and look at what you are learning. Really embrace the inner growth rather than balking at the outer challenges. Surrender - you are where you are. Ask how can you make the best of it, be the most loving, ask for the most help? How can you embrace the fact that earth is a school and we are eternal beings here, learning to dissolve the illusions that hold us bound.

Many of you on this list have told me you love hearing about how I handle challenges, so I hope you don't mind hearing about how I handle the blissful challenge of feeling such huge love! I share it because I know some of you have already been there, and for those who aren't yet, I want to share hope because spring always follows winter and a glorious dawn always follows the dark.

The angels said to a client this week, "God is simply ripping away all that you thought you were so you can discover all that you truly are." I have had all that I thought I was ripped away over the last 15 years of my life and I give thanks for that. I thought I was my job - but instead of being an avionics engineer I discovered I was a mystic and a creative soul. I thought I was a pious little religious girl, but instead I discovered that was only a small expression of the truly loving and spiritual being that I am. I thought I was a make-nice, do-good er, but instead discovered that walking in truth - be it pretty or painful - is nicer and more blessed. I am not my income, my circumstances, my title, or even the results of my life. I just simply AM. And so are you.

God bless you all on your journey,
Your souls, even in the dark times, shine ever so brightly.

Love and hugs,
Ann




* My guide into my past lives was Robin Miller in Sedona, AZ. He is both an acclaimed New Age Musician and a skilled earth angel who can assist you easily into other dimensions. Because of the purity of his channeling in these sessions it is as if the angels themselves are guiding you through the darkness, up and into the light.
Check out his site here

Others who can guide you in regression in the Phoenix and a few other areas are listed here.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Past lives and present revelations

I recently experienced a past life regression hypnosis. It all started three months ago when I asked God quite plainly to help me get rid of the fear and tension in my body. Well maybe "ask" is too light a word... In truth I declared unto the heavens, "I want this phantom tension, fear, and pain out of my body and I want it out now!" And thus began a series of events that triggered incredible fears. I had fearful clients. I had upset friends. I had my own silly worries creep into my mind. I shook and froze with unnamable fears. I had a friend clear me and my house and that helped, but I knew there was more. Finally Dr. Peebles (the angel that comes through my friend Summer Bacon) recommended I get a past life regression* with someone who didn't know me so I could clear this out once and for all. The minute I heard that suggestion my body started giving me all sorts of lovely information about what to expect.

So without going into detail, suffice it to say that my little joke about being "roasted, toasted, sliced, and diced" and still being back on earth again and just fine turned out to be quite true. I saw lifetimes where I spoke up vehemently about right and wrong only to be put to death. I saw lifetimes where I was scapegoated, and confused about what I did wrong (nothing really). I even saw one in which I took on responsibility for others being tortured as a result of me speaking up about those in power. I saw the incredible guilt I took on as a result. During the hypnosis, as the light of understanding clicked in, the guilt just left. I have had that horrid dark, sad, sorry, energy in my body as long as I remember. And its gone!! I could have jumped for the sheer delight of it all! I feel lighter and worry free.

It is so funny how serious everything can seem in the moment, and how, after a lifetime, it is all just a lesson. I saw the faces of those who hurt me, tortured me, killed me, and I knew they were people I love this lifetime. We've obvious gotten over it! I saw the lessons I learned, the illusions I took on, and the strength of my own spirit. And I am rejoicing. Seeing the love and the truth feels awesome!

So, in this lifetime if someone or something upsets you, try to put it in perspective - you are an eternal soul. This challenge too shall pass, and even the worst things that happen to us, teach us more about our own loving nature. In one lifetime I was a mystic who felt that I had accomplished nothing because I was thrown in a dungeon - I had refused to use my powers for bad reasons and that ticked off the souls who wished to use me. It wasn't until after my death that I realized my greatest act of love that entire lifetime was being kind to a fellow prisoner - that all my attempts to teach and force humans to grow were nothing compared to the genuine compassion I showed another human being in the final dark, dank, days in a dungeon. How little we know of the true value of our lives until we get to the other side. How small our problems really are in the light of our souls own brilliance.

If you find yourself in a situation you don't like pray like crazy and ask God to see it through His eyes - what is your soul trying to teach you? If you find yourself around someone you don't like much, pray to see them through God's eyes. Where is the good in their soul that they are striving to find? And above all, every day, pray and ask God to help YOU see yourself through His eyes, for indeed there is no greater love, no more magnificent reflection of your own loving brilliance and bright light.

I love you all and ask God to bless you on your journey,
We're all in this school together :)
Ann

PS - Please say prayers for my mom Carol to have a great year - 10/24 is her birthday!!

* My guide into my past lives was Robin Miller in Sedona, AZ. He is both an acclaimed New Age Musician and a skilled earth angel who can assist you easily into other dimensions.
Check out his site: www.robinmillermusic.com.

For others who can guide you in regression click here.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Self care is loving the world

The angels message hits home with me this week. My greatest challenge in my work and personal life over the years has been to constantly remind myself that it is not my job to 'fix' anyone's life but rather to allow God and the angels to guide and love them through whatever it is they are going through at the moment. It is the tendency of so many good people to want to focus on the lives of others and do all we can to make everyone else happy. It is our hearts that want to reach out and do this, and it comes from the best of intentions.

And yet, it is our only job to listen to God's guidance in our hearts and follow that in our lives, for to do this is to truly fix our own lives, to live as God intended, and therefore to trust that God is also going to use us as He knows best to help and assist others in their growth.

There was a time in my life when my mother was really burning herself out taking care of my grandmother. It was so hard to watch. There was no balance and she was starting to get sick as well. I had to have a horribly hard conversation and tell my mom that if she got ill from not taking care of herself, I was not going to burn myself out and get ill taking care of her - that I would do my best, but that the cycle of martyrdom in our family tree had to stop. It was unthinkably hard to say this. I was afraid she would think me uncaring. I was afraid of not being seen as a 'good' daughter. I cried. She cried. But she began taking better care of herself and I thank God she is still with me today.

Being true to yourself is, at times, unthinkably hard. It goes against our tendencies to want to please. And yet this honesty is often exactly what is needed for all, at levels we cannot even comprehend because of our limited perspectives. God knows what He is doing. We have to trust this.

I ask God every day, "Please let my words be your words. Please guide me in what you want me to do. Please let me know what you want in every aspect of my life." I have had to turn down a lot of offers to spend time with beautiful people in order to stay in balance in my life. Every now and then I do get off, but getting back on track is so much quicker than it used to be.

It is not selfish to take care of yourself. It is absolutely required if we are to be able to let our lights shine in this world. It is ok to say 'no' to another if that means saying 'yes' to your own self care. In the long run, there will be more to give and share. Self-care is almost always blocked out on my schedule and private time is non-negotiable in my life. It allows me to refill my own cup and bear witness to the world's pain with great love. It allows me to make sure my relationship with God and myself is in the right place first before I relate to others. When I slip, the consqeuences are obvious in my life. Self care need not take long - it can be a few minutes spent in silent prayer, a brief nap when I'm in the middle of a busy day, or at least a brief time to sit and eat and replenish my body. We know what we need. We just need to listen. It takes practice, because we aren't trained to do this. We're human. Sometimes I forget. But when I do, I get back to basics immediately - rest, good food, time with God, and positive thinking - and life begins to turn around.

So take care of yourself and ask God how He wants you to serve. Rather than automatically reaching out to save or fix another, pray to God and ask Him how you can best serve. God knows always what is best for all. Trust in that and you will be giving from a full cup instead of pouring from an empty one.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sit, breathe, wait for help

There are times when I've felt pretty slam-dunked by my lessons. There are times when I've thrown tantrums, bargained with God, and did all the things we humans do when we feel helpless. Then the angels would always come in and remind me that they saw me as a child in need of love and would just hold me until I grew up again and started assuming my place in the universe. Once they teased me, saying, "Yes last night you threw a tantrum unto the heavens unlike any we have ever seen. We got out our popcorn and watched the sparks fly!" I had to laugh. Another time they said, "We love it when your green eyes shoot sparks." Now how could I stay upset at that?! I have learned over the years to catch myself at the onset of a tantrum, to breathe when feeling desperate for help, and to sit, pray, and receive God's love when I feel nutty or helpless. Then, when I'm calm, I get back in touch with what I want and pray for it.

A month or so ago, I was bombarded by a very nasty energy. This was a doosey. It was one of those vibrations that dredges up all your past life fears. I was convinced that I wasn't safe on earth. I had all sorts of negative thoughts bombarding me, that I knew weren't from me at all. I realized that I had to get a grip on myself, and clear out this other energy. I had no clue what it was or how I let it in.

I did what I always do when I feel clueless. I turned to God. I reminded myself that He loves me and that me shivering in unknown fears isn't exactly what He has in mind for my life; therefore, I was stuck in some illusion and had something to learn. I sat, breathed, and asked for guidance and understanding as to my lessons and what I needed to do to feel better again. In this case was guided to ask for human help (Susan Palmer rocks at clearings - spirithealer@sedonalink.com). The shaking and freezing stopped and I was able to see how I allowed this energy into my system. I had just gotten a bit worn out and tired and had forgotten to set up my energetic boundaries. I have to do this every day or I get myself in trouble. Once again I'm in truth affirming that I am made of God's love and here to give and receive it. I feel like me again.

When you find yourself in a situation you'd rather not be in, sit, breathe, and wait for inspiration or guidance. You may need to pray for comfort, patience, or peace first. You may be guided to ask for human help. You may be guided to rest, take time off, or use your focus to clear your thoughts. Trust what you feel after you have calmed down. God wants to help you learn more easily. Its not the preference of a loving creator to see us struggle so much. We do that on our own. Instead of screaming, "I want help; I want money; I want someone or something to change," pray... "God help me learn and help my life change gracefully." "God help me feel your abundance in my heart so I can manifest it in my life. I give thanks for all I do have." "God help me learn how to be loving to myself and others, and work this situation out." Those prayers work better in my experience - they put you in a much nicer vibrational space. After all, you can't manifest diamonds while focusing on doo doo! (Want a laugh - as I was spell-checking my computer wanted to change this to read "doom doom"... oh how funny!)

My favorite prayer every morning these days is:

God, fill my mind, heart, body, soul, friends, family, home and dogs with Your grace. Fill every one of my activities with Your grace. Go before me and pave the way with magic and miracles. Make Your desires for me, be my desires. Make Your thoughts, my thoughts. Make the words You wish to speak through me be my words. Thy will be done... and make me love it! Let me see me through your eyes.

Then I take a minute, breathe in God's love until I feel full and go about my day. Take time this week to ask for more help. Pray to understand the lessons and trust understanding will come. Pray for God to assist you into a better space and wait for inspiration. Your prayers are all heard, but the ones you pray with power and sincerity carry more weight in the universe than angry, victimized, helpless, or uninspired prayer. After all you WERE made in God's image and likeness, and so in truth, you are powerful, loving, and deserving of all help!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

The love of the earth

Nature has always been a source of replenishment and restoration for me. When I feel 'off' I go outside, even if it is only to sit on a blanket on the grass for a few minutes, or rest on the patio. A good long hike always clears my head and cleans my energy. I love the earth. All you have to do is look around you when you are outdoors to see the love of God manifest in the miracles of His creation. God did not hide his love. He bestowed it everywhere, from the blue sky, to the green grass, to the myriad of flowers, or the sweetness of a drenching rain. How can you ever feel unloved when you are kissed by the sun, caressed by the breezes, and sung sweet songs by a symphony of birds at dawn and dusk. How indeed? We forget how loved we are. We forget to appreciate what is right in front of us. In our hurry to pay bills, get chores done, and pack our days in order to 'be happy someday' we forget to get outside, to sit and appreciate creation, and to BE happy now. So much wealth is right outside our doorsteps, yet we forget how loved we are.

Years ago, "Fred," the ficus tree I planted in the backyard, died in a rare winter frost. We went outside and did a little prayer ceremony around him, hoping to bring him back to life. Well he was gone for good, but miraculously, in his place, a a mulberry tree began to grow. The mulberry grew 35 feet tall in five years. Its canopy shades my yard in the summer and allows sunshine in during the winter. It is home to a veritable aviary of birds - finches, hummingbirds, mockingbirds, sparrows, a woodpecker now and then, grackles, cardinals - you name it. Every morning they sing to me, and at night they thank God for the day with another song. This tree has become the hub of wildlife in my little suburban yard and I love it. I didn't even put it in the ground myself. Nature did it for me.

A few years later I got interested in fairies - the little nature angels that watch over God's plants. I heard they liked sparkly stuff, so hoping my neighbors wouldn't see me, I went out and sprinkled glitter in the planter box where I was having trouble growing things in the rocky soil. "Anything else you guys want," I asked psychically. I heard a loud chorus of voices. "We want an angel statue! We want an angel statue!" So off to the local mega-mart I went to get an inexpensive yard angel to appease the chorus of fairies in my head. That year, beautiful pink primroses sprouted up spontaneousy in my planter boxes and to this day they give me a carpet of lovely flowers in April. Again, I didn't plant them - the seeds blew in on the breezes. Now everything grows in my planter boxes.

Nature always reminds me of resurrection and new life. It teaches me about the phases of life. Something new is always sprouting up in the yard. When one thing dies, something more beautiful grows in its place. When winter comes everything goes a bit dormant and reminds me to rest. When spring comes, flowers bloom in all their glory reminding me to celebrate new life and new activity. Fall is a time of harvest, and letting go of what is inauthentic in our lives. All I have to do, to feel connected with God, is to sit outside and contemplate all the miracles around me. Mother earth, and all her creatures are indeed teachers and ambassadors of God's love.

I even asked the pigeons, who seem to love my yard, a quick question the other day. "Hey guys, if all God's creatures serve a purpose, what is yours? Many people don't like you much and you have to admit, you are a bit messy." "Rainbow" who is both a fantastic daddy pigeon and quite the loving husband to his pigeon wife, answered. "Pigeons are not afraid to bring nature into the cities which have been paved over, polluted, and where all other remnants of God's creation have been virtually wiped out. We eat the cast-off crumbs that humans toss away. People think we are messy and in one sense we are, but our presence is meant to remind people that even in the midst of the messy pollution, concrete, and artificial environments, God's creation is ever present." I was impressed - I really didn't expect much of an answer. Watching these birds - the ones that most people loathe - teaches me. They are very loving to their partners. They take turns sitting on their nests. They have close knit families and are trusting until they learn otherwise. I could write a whole book on what I've learned from them.

So mother earth does nurture and teach and comfort us in all ways great and small. You can take this at face value and simply relax in her beauty, or you can really tune into her energy and receive a blanketing wave of comforting energy enveloping you that is akin to a mother's love. Either way, she can replenish your spirit, and goodness knows, we are all in need of that now and then.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Enjoy now - why wait?

I used to go crazy when I wanted to achieve something. I couldn't rest until the goal was accomplished, whether it was cleaning the house or getting a work project done. Everything else got put on hold. I was missing my "real" life - always living for something to get done, then immediately creating the next thing to do. The angels say often, through my friend Summer Bacon, "When you get there, where you gonna get to next?" There is always another goal. When we pay attention to where we are in the here and now almost anything can be transformed from being mundane to being enjoyable.

The other night after work, I was rushing to give my dogs their thrice-weekly anti-mite dog bath. As I started herding my big guy into the bathroom, he reminded me that I was anything but present. He was resisting me with everything in him. I heard his spirit loud and clear. "I am not just another thing on your to do list and if you're going to make me take a bath, you will have to make it fun." He stopped, dug his paws into the carpet and wouldn't budge!! I started to laugh. My dogs have always insisted on me learning my lessons. "You're right," I said. "Ok I'm doing this because I love you. I don't want those bugs eating you up, so lets make this fun." I started to sing the bathtub song I made up for them... "Rub a dub dub dub, Rub a dub dub dub, I've got a dog in the tub, tub, tub.... All the little mites have to go into the light, Rub a dub dub dub dub." My dog is the only one on earth that loves my singing voice - he smiled, released his death grip on the carpet, and proceeded to cooperate. Mind you - being soaking wet with a 70 lb husky pouring vinegar water all over him isn't exactly my idea of an amazing night, but because I got present again we had fun, my dog got all happy and fluffy afterwards and that priceless smile was worth every bit of work. I'm sure you mom's out there know exactly what I'm talking about!

I try to apply the same principles to all my life activities. I had to sit at the car repair place for four hours last week while Zippy, my car, had some expensive but necessary repairs. Instead of focusing on all the time and money it was taking to fix the car, I enjoyed four hours of quiet time with no phone and no email. I read an entire book, and did some meditations I'd been wanting to do for ages. I felt rejuvenated and abundant in my spirit even though the time had been spent sitting in a waiting room that wasn't exactly a five star resort!

We all want things in the future, but why put off enjoying what is in front of us right now. We can waste our entire lives in worry, or we can live our lives, fully and richly, present to what is in front of us. I am a lot happier than I used to be now that each moment has become precious.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Practice non-judgment

I was saddened a few weeks ago when I received an email going around the internet denouncing the US Postal Service for printing a stamp celebrating a Muslim Holiday. The author of this email cited several anti-American Muslim extremist bombings as if that represented the entire Muslim population.

This type of lumping groups of people together based on the actions of a few is ignorant and dangerous. It would be like saying all Christians are murderers because they burnt witches and went on Crusades, or all Germans are bad because of Hitler's appalling deeds, or all white people are haters because of some extremists. It is so sad that in today's day and age this type of thinking still exists. My father teaches at a university and is friends with some very loving Muslim families who treat him with such kindness that it would put some people of other religions to shame. We cannot and should not ever generalize about groups of human beings based on the actions of a few, or by our limited experience with them.

My grandma, sadly was very prejudiced most of her lifetime because a few young hoodlums beat up my grandfather when they were newly married. It wasn't until the end of her life, when a dear woman of color became her best friend in the nursing home, that she was able to let go of the pain and open her heart to know the soul inside a group she once judged. I was happy for her healing. Mom brought grandma and Rosa some Polish food and Rosa's daughter brought her and grandma fried chicken - it was funny that food was the bridge between racial ignorance and prejudice. We all eat, after all. We all bleed. We all love.

And while most of us on this list wouldn't presume to make such assumptions and prejudicial judgments about an entire population based on race or religion, we have to be careful not to extrapolate our own experiences and prevent ourselves from living. Its so easy to say, "Oh I had a bad relationship so I am biased against all men or all women," for example. I once asked the women in a class to list their negative beliefs about men and vice versa. It was amazing - so many women responded, "Men are controlling." So many men responded, "Women are flaky," and yet I asked, "Have you met all men?" "Have you met all women?" or are these judgments coming from your experiences alone?"

We limit ourselves from living if we extrapolate our judgments based on a limited range of experience. I wanted to try a can of Lychee fruit from the 99cent store for example. It was something I'd never had and I figured it was only $1. It was horrible!! The taste of the can permeated the fruit! But will this stop me from trying new things or even Lychee if I ever get it ripe off the tree? No! It will just stop me from trying that can again :)

And on a bigger scale, I have had some pretty scary experiences with spirits in the past when I was worn down and not paying attention to my own intuition - most of you heard about the one last year that socked me. But will that stop me from talking to spirits? Not at all. It will just remind me to be more mindful of my own well being so as not to get tired and let that in.

Life is so varied, so diverse, so amazing, that we only hurt ourselves when we make sweeping judgments. We stop trying new things because something didn't work once, or twice, or even three times. We assume we'll never find love. We limit our exposure to only people like us. But there is spice in life in the diversity. If all the people in the world, or all the ice cream scoops in the world were plain vanilla, well that would be pretty boring :) Thank God (literally!) that we are different. Thank God we share different perspectives.

We don't have to agree with anyone else. We just have to appreciate the diversity. One of my dearest friends and I disagreed on nearly everything for years, and yet the more we know each other the more we find the common ground. I disagree, in general, with extremism in any form, and yet I can appreciate the passion these people have for their beliefs. I just don't have to be around it. And if it affects my life in any way, I will deal with it then. For now I have more important things to do :)

Practice non-judgment when you can. I'm not perfect at it, and you may not be either, but we can always do better. You will free up your soul to BE who you want to be, rather than fighting those who are not whom you wish they would be. And that, dear ones, is the point of this earthly journey - to learn to BE the love we truly are.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Avoiding the boulders

I used to waste a lot of time trying to move the boulders - meaning I used to try to convince unkind people to be kinder; I tried to educate people about what I thought was right; and I did anything I could do to try to prove to people that I was a kind and loving person. I worked overtime and went above and beyond the call of duty to be 'loving' to others even when they were unkind to me. I strove to be 'forgiving' while allowing others to abuse me with words and behaviors. Sometimes my loving words and behavior authentically reflected what was in my heart. Often, it did not. We get the same lessons over and over until we learn to be real.

During my twenties, another coworker admitted he stole something from me when he was at a gathering in my home. The rest of the conversation as to why he stole it was even more appalling. Being young, naive, and "holier than thou" at the time, I strove to 'forgive' him, thinking that was what God wanted of me. Now I realize God would have wanted me to be real instead of faking loving behavior, while in reality I felt sick. I could have truly forgiven more easily and authentically had I told him that I found the behavior unthinkable and disgusting and proceeded to be professionally cool to him, or at the very least terminated the friendship without expressing a thing. Instead I worked harder than ever to be forgiving and friendly, trying to help him see that there was a nicer way to be, and trying to prove that I was a loving and forgiving person. Instead of changing him, his behaviors went downhill, and eventually I had to have a conversation with him saying I was going to have to turn him into human resources unless the inappropriate behaviors stopped. A week after I set my boundaries, for a reason completely unrelated to our discussion he was transferred. I got real, and God removed the difficult situation from my life.

The universe gave me another chance with the same lesson - just to help me see I'd learned. I was sent as a young engineer to a company in California to work with their engineers. The man there decided to gather up a group of guys and drive me to lunch. Well the lunch turned out to be "lingerie lunch" at a local dive where they proceeded to enjoy some extremely foul jokes at my expense while scantily clad women served us terrible food. This time, I was more real. I ignored them the entire hour, refusing to dignify their behavior towards me with a response, went back to my own company and told my boss that this wasn't ok and that I was never going back to work with these people again. He called the customer and in very direct terms described how I was to be treated. From that day on I was treated with the utmost respect. I had learned to be real. The situation was handled quickly and easily, and I was much more easily able to forgive and let it go.

Fast forward to the past few years and the scenario repeated again, just to be sure I got it. I was at the dolphin tank in Sea World, having fun getting doused by a playful dolphin, when an attractive and well dressed man in a black silk suit showed up and started hitting on me in a most disrespectful way. Words that were created to describe supermarket produce were applied to my body parts, as he continued his attempts to 'flatter' me. I felt the cords from his aura trying to hook into my lower energy centers, and lost all desire to be warm and friendly. "Are you here alone," he asked. I could have lied, but chose not too. "I came here to get away from everyone." (Hint). "I'm alone too!" he said. "Let's do something tonight!" "I am resting tonight. Sorry," I responded, being as kind as the situation warranted. "What do you do for a livling," he asked. "I talk to angels," I responded. "Really?" He proceeded to become human for a minute and to ask genuine questions. His cords withdrew from my aura. I was relieved. Then his baser side kicked in again, and his energy started to slime me as he made another unwelcome offer... "You say you want to rest? I give good massages. I could give you a massage tonight. I can help you rest." "Oh please just go away," I thought to myself, The line had been crossed. He was acting like a pimp on the prowl, and I just wanted to go back to my joyful interaction with the dolphin. I took a breath and quietly prayed and asked God to help me send this man on his way in the kindest way possible. He seemed to be the type who enjoyed verbal sparring so I knew if I just told him to go away he'd be a pest. The ladies room was too far away to duck into and there weren't many other people around.

The idea came quickly. I looked a the dolphin with whom I'd been playing a game of "splash and spit," and said to her, "I think you should splash this man and his expensive suit right now! Yes!! What a great idea. Come on... let's play!! He'd LOVE to get all wet!" The man looked at me in shock. I'm sure the suit cost him hundreds of dollars. The dolphin looked at me, eyes sparkling, looked at the man, and filled her beak with a load of water. She was cocked and ready to spit. The man backed up and away and made a hasty exit! Instead of raging as I used to do when I felt cornered by obnoxious behavior, I had a good long laugh, splashed my friendly dolphin in appreciation and was rewarded with a beak full of water. We both squeaked and squealed with laughter.

People are just people. Instead of treating others like horrid monsters, even if they act that way, ignore them, or if you have to move them on their way, get creative. If you have to work with them or live with them, try to listen to them. Ask them where they are coming from and share your feelings as well. I'll never forget a dear young woman who asked the angels how to deal with a mean kid at school. Bring cookies and share one with her, the angels said. They told her that the mean little girl was just insecure. So this enlightened child did just that and made friends with the 'mean' girl. The angels have often recommended acts of kindness that bridge misunderstandings.

Being real, while still being kind, takes constant practice. I am always challenged to go deeper into my own heart, to communicate with kindness and sometimes humor when I open my mouth, and to know when to simply let things be. It may take a lifetime to perfect being so authentic that we choose love all the time, but the effort is the point of our existence, and very much worth the time and energy we spend learning to perfect it.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Back to Basics

It is funny how life can be exactly the same, and yet one minute it looks wonderful, and the next, due to some internal change, it looks much less appealing. I have learned over the years what clouds my vision, when I should make choices, and when I should wait. For example, I've learned to only make choices when I am balanced, rested, and fed! if I am hormonal, hungry, or tired, i wait. When I choose to do life affirming things - things that are healthy and good for my mind, body, and soul, i am able to give so much more and to look at life so much more clearly.

Last week after exercising, I felt more intensely focused than I have in ages! The sky looked brighter, the trees greener, and everything seemed to be in High Definition! I know in these moments that its prime time for manifesting, so I took some time to clarify my intentions for the day. I proceeded to have one of the most productive days I've had in ages. I had so much energy it just kept coming. I even got done with some tasks I'd put off for months. In making healthy choices, we give ourselves permission to be the best we can be. I didn't indulge in negative thoughts that day. I caught myself groaning about a mundane task and stopped myself immediately. I personally didn't feel like doing it, but in my heart I wanted it done!

I used to agonize over choices, wondering what would "make" me happiest. And yet the angels always told me to "go back to basics." That was never too exciting - we humans can have addictive tendencies at times. We want a high, rather than putting ourselves to task and doing what we know makes us feel good. And so every time I'd be looking for something to make me happy, the angels would get very clear with me - eat right, go to bed on time, exercise, and do something to fill your spirit. Now that doesn't sound like high and mighty advice, but it is truly the best advice and it works time and time again. We KNOW how to take care of ourselves. Its not glamorous, but its a wise choice. And all of the sudden all those other decisions seem trivial - if I am happy and feeling good inside of myself, I can choose to do anything and be happy.

So this week, try to make choices to go back to basics, and take care of the basic needs of your mind, body, and soul. You know what works for you, so just do it. And even if you don't think you have time, make some... you can't afford not to - you will be more energetic, productive, and best of all - happy!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Letting my joy shine

For years I've toned myself down when in joyful moods if those around me were in pain. My happiness has been known to drive people nuts. "Calm down," I've been told. "You can't really be that happy. You're in denial." I no longer worry about bugging people with my joy. When I am happy, I am. I'm no longer in the business of creating misery in my life anymore to show people I understand and care about theirs. I do understand. I truly care. I've had physical pain, spiritual attacks, financial losses, times when I didn't know how to pay bills, emotional and verbal abuse in relationships this life and other types in past lives... you name it. I've walked in the dark. And yet I've come to realize that these walks were necessary when they happened because I was learning. I was learning how to listen to my feelings, honor my instincts, to live in the moment, to walk with faith, and to really understand that taking care of myself meant I would serve the souls rather than the egos of those around me.

Now when I see or work with someone who is in pain, I know their soul is learning too and they just need love, compassion, and understanding of the lessons to get them through. They might think they need pity, but what they really need is a real solution, a real way out. Years ago the angels said to me, "Ann if someone is in quicksand, don't you think its best to stand on the firm ground and offer them a hand up when ready rather than to jump in and let them stand on your head trying to climb out?" I have to admit, I got the concept right away but it has taken me years to truly embrace the fact that suffering with others to show I care, is useless nonsense. Far better for me to stand in a higher truth and truly help them through it.

I have huge compassion for those in pain. I've been there. And yet I no longer feel I should suffer too. I once heard that a famous actress was interviewed and the interviewer said, "Don't you feel terribly guilty because you have so much when others have so little?" Her response was true spiritual brilliance, "No," she said. "I feel terribly blessed that I have so much and am in a position to share inspiration and do good in the world." This is what I aspire to do - to fill my own well over and over and to spill it forth into the world.

My dog is a great teacher for me. I have a tendency to care so much that when she is in pain a part of me wants to put my entire life on hold, and be with her. She would like that too, but I can't do that all the time. I have responsibilities to myself and others as well. This week we had another challenge. She managed to remove the drip pan from the grill and eat the hard metal foil pan after chewing it into sharp little bits. I prayed like CRAZY for guidance and the angels told me if I could relax, she would, and her body would get rid of it. For the sake of my dog, I calmed down and trusted the guidance.

In spite of my mind saying I should stay up, watch her, and worry through the night, I listened to the angels and went to bed. My dog was in obvious discomfort but I knew after loving on her that there was nothing else I could do. I woke up at 2am to the sound of sharp foil bits being ejected and my poor dog looking pretty thrashed. I calmed her down, massaged and kissed her, cleaned up the mess, changed the towels and decided to go back to bed since once again the angels said that there was nothing I could do other than to get sleep and take care of myself. The process was repeated at least three more times that night. The next day I had SO much to do. I felt I 'should' sit with her and just pet her all day but the responsibilities called and the angels told me to leave her be. On several occasions my mind started to worry, agonized, and guilt-trip itself. "I should take her to the vet." "I should feed her cotton balls (google it - its a remedy for dogs who swallow sharp stuff)." "I should make her throw up." "No, No, and No." the angels said. Relax, go on with your day, Ann. Be calm and she will be calm. This was what I truly wanted to do even had I not heard the angels. My mind was trying to negate my heart. I ignored the yak, yak and listened to my heart and the angels.

To make a long story short, I had very good and productive day and after resting all day my dog got rid of the rest of the foil. We were all quite happy once again. Had I sat there and been miserable with fear and worry with her, she would have tightened up with possibly tragic consequences. She really is teaching me that it is not productive to sit in misery when someone else is, but rather to listen to the guidance and allow myself to be in a better space. It was my calm that helped her find peace and allowed her to loosen up. What a lesson!

So if you are around someone who is not in a good space, love them. Ask permission if you want to offer advice. Honor their process. But know that you serve them far more if you listen to your own heart and guidance that if you listen to all the 'shoulds' we were raised with, or if you honor their tugs and pulls. Stay in your own center and from that point, God will help you figure out how to truly help their spirit through whatever lesson it is they are learning. You will feel much better too!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Pray like you mean it

I prayed some serious prayers this week. After the dog episode, a week of dear but intense clients in need, and scores of emails, coupled with the fact that most of my dear friends are also going through challenge now (seems many are!), and some big bills suddenly coming in, I got a little off center. I know I'm off center when I am not clear and focused in the moment about what it is my heart wants. My mind was starting to yak and take over. I knew I needed to realign with God, and to reclaim my power over my own life, rather than feeling out of control. So I did something that always works for me - I set time aside and prayed.

I began with a prayer to the guardians of the four directions - they are angelic beings that help with thought (east), physical manifestation (south), emotion (west), and wisdom (north). If you want to learn more about the metaphor of the medicine wheel, you can read this article on my site.

I prayed for everything I wanted to transform inside myself, for clients, friends, dogs, and finally I sat in front of a beautiful crystal sphere that looks like earth and took it into my hands and prayed vehemently for the well being of mother earth. A seismic wave of emotion came back up from the earth through my feet and flooded my heart. Tears welled up from my depths as I felt the love of our planet stream back into me. She knows when we're praying for her and like any mother acknowledged, returns the blessings tenfold. I knew she was about to change. I knew she was ready to shake and quake. I knew we were all in for change. I blessed and thanked her, blessed my angels and guides, and gave thanks and praise to God for my life and the lives we all live - no matter how challenging they are, for in this space of being connected with earth, the four directions, and all aspects of my life, even the challenges looked like blessings,

Slowly I came back to normal awareness, extinguished the candles I'd lit after imagining absorbing their light into my heart, and went to check on the dogs. My injured one who had prior been sluggish and somewhat depressed, got up, ran over and licked my nose happily. She has been doing great every since. Suddenly I am motivated to work on another book. My friends lives are shifting.

I am back in spiritual truth, ready to love and give more. Its amazing what happens when we take charge, when we do whatever it takes to get back into our power and to connect with God in serious and sincere prayer, KNOWING and TRUSTING, that He hears us. Ceremony is one way. Church service, for some is another. Meditation works. Anything that gets you feeling connected to God again will get your life moving in a positive motion. We are not separate from God or one another... ever. It is only when we get tired or mired in illusions that our lives start to take on a lackluster survival quality. God wants more for us. We have to own that we are worthy of it. Our prayers should not be the supplications of a pleading child who feels unworthy of love but rather a call to the loving creator from a spirit who knows that he or she has a valued place in the universe and is worthy of love, attention, and support.

Praying like this works. It has never failed me. If we pray as if we don't deserve the answer to our prayers, we immediately negate them. When we pray inauthentically we negate our prayers. When we pray with deep and sincere conviction, from the depths of our being, knowing we are worthy of an answer, the universe cannot help but answer in its own perfect time.

This week, get real with your prayers. You are not powerless or unloved. Pray as if you know you are loved, know you are supported, and know God cares about your heart. Pray as if you are setting the entire universe in motion with the very act of your praying. Pray as if you are a starving man praying for food, not pleading and begging in unworthiness, but rather commanding the very source of abundance itself to share with you what you know you have on the inside.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Presence pays off

I have been practicing the present of presence far more than I thought was possible lately. I can actually sit and relax in stolen moments and not worry when they will end. I can be more in the moment with my tai chi and feel the energy even more than ever before. I have been more present with clients and the spirits in the many different dimensions that come with them. Its been fun.

However the present of presence REALLY pays off when you get challenged. Last week in the middle of my last reading, the dogs started banging on the bedroom door indicating they needed to go outside fast. I quickly excused myself to let them out. Lucy, my labrador with arthritis, stepped on her foot wrong and got in so much pain she started snapping uncontrollably. My other dog reacted. I got in between, separated them and got repeatedly bit on my right arm. She didn't puncture far, but boy was I bruised! When I put her back in the bedroom I discovered a 'present' had been left for me. I went back to the reading, breathed a few times, got present and focused on my client. The rest had to wait. After the workday was ended, I cleaned up the doggie gift, threw the towels underneath it in the wash, breathed into my monthly cramps which decided to kick into full gear, Reiki'd the hurt dog, called the vet to schedule an appointment, fed the dogs, and iced my arm. I surrendered to a ten minute pity party then emailed my best healer friends for help, and proceeded to eat dinner and actually relax for the last half hour of the evening. Being in the present enabled me to handle the drama without yelling at my poor hurt snapping dog, without making my own injuries worse (almost all better except for some color on the arm), without messing up the reading, and without spiraling downhill into the old 'why me?' scenario.

Later that week, we got to the vet, got doggie drugs, researched better alternatives on the web, and did one honkin' prayer ceremony, immediately after which my dear doggie perked up and felt better. Now we're on a schedule for meds, supplements, Reiki, paw-dicures, and doggie massage - much more responsibility for me, but a better life for the furry kids, and therefore a more peaceful and happy house.

Being present does indeed help you enjoy life's joys immensely, and it certainly helps you handle life's challenges with greater ease. I keep telling myself... I can only do my best, one moment at a time. I can only do what I can do. If I can't handle something alone, God will be there to provide help and assist me. If I can't help another, God will provide someone else who can. God is in charge. I am only required to listen to my guidance and my heart and follow these compasses one moment at a time.

So if you catch yourself in bliss, surrender to and enjoy the moment. If you are in challenge surrender to and handle the moment. That is, after all, all we have. Tomorrow becomes our new today. Today becomes our new yesterday. Now is where life happens.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Saving a life

I had one of those guided moment again last week. I was planning to run multiple errands and my mind was saying it made sense to do everything else first and then go to the grocery store on the way home. Nonetheless, I had a strong urge to go go the grocery first - even though it would mean running home again so the food didn't melt in the car, since our temperatures are now regularly over 110 degrees! So into the grocery story I went just in time to see an elderly lady turning pale and wavering while gripping her shopping cart. In a faint voice she cried out, "I feel sick. I need a chair." No one else was paying any attention to her, other than giving her a quick stare and avoiding her aisle. I was mortified.

I ran and found the only chair in the store and held her while we eased her down into it. She was too weak to even let go of the cart. I put my hand on her back behind her heart and ran energy to calm her field down while I asked her if she was alone. Apparently her caretaker had run to get the car after she started feeling bad. "What happened?" I asked, and reassured her I'd stay with her till the caretaker arrived. "I just got out of the hospital, she said, and pushed her collar aside to show me the incision where a new pacemaker had been inserted into her heart. My daughter is going to be mad. She told me not to go out, but I made my caretaker bring me here." "You're a little stinker," I told her in a calming voice. "Don't worry, we'll take care of you." Meanwhile some totally unconscious shoppers got a little irate that we were taking up space in the aisle. "She's feeling sick," I told them gently, "Can you please go around us this time? I can't move her by myself"

I was praying for guidance and assistance when another woman showed up, asking if we needed help. "Yes please," I replied to both her and another man who offered once he saw what was going on. The new woman, it ends up, worked with elderly people and had a gift for calming the sick lady down, who by this time was quite worked up since the only way out of the store was to hoist her onto the seat of her rolling walker and wheel her out. Carefully we lifted her. The gentleman held her upright. I bent over and held her legs up since they didn't reach the floor, and the other woman coached us while we walked and rolled her to the car. Another woman gave her some water. The woman who knew what she was doing got the elderly lady in her car. I asked the caretaker to please get help and call the doctor when they got home, no matter how much her charge protested. She promised she would. I proceeded to get my groceries.

Back in my own car, the gravity of this woman's situation hit me. I shudder to think what might have happened had I listened to my head instead of my urge to shop first. She could have fallen, or worse died. I just met a woman whose first pacemaker didn't work and she almost died and had to go back and get a new one. I started bawling and realized that somehow I had tapped into a load of broken hearted sadness the older woman was feeling over the loss of her husband. I hadn't felt psychic in the store but it hit hard when I was done. I felt like God used me as a pressure release valve to help her live. After the tears, I thanked Him for the gift of being able to help someone like that.

You never know why your urgings are as they are. You may not know this lifetime why you chose a left turn over a right, why you went to one errand first vs. another, why you have the urge to call an old friend. But when those urges hit, just listen. It may be a small gift that spirit wants to give you - like witnessing a beautiful cloud formation or a rainbow, or getting something on sale, or it may be a matter of helping someone avoid an accident. It may even be a matter of helping someone live. You never know, but God knows what He's doing. We just have to listen :)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Listening to my body, feeling good

It has been a year of focusing on my physical body, and I'm feeling so much better than ever before. In January I got real about the fact that I didn't want a misaligned spine and back pain the rest of my life. I have a wonderful chiropractor, but knew if I didn't strengthen my core, then no matter how much I got adjusted, I'd just slide right back into a horrid posture that was starting to give me all sorts of trouble. So I asked my body to help me in my intent to get strong, aligned, and flexible again - in a way that would fit my schedule and with something I could do at home. I also wanted to lose my winter weight.

"What do you want me to do first?" I asked. "Situps," were the answer. So I set about doing situps every morning. At first I could only do ten in the middle and 10 crunches on each side. I gradually worked my way up to 100 total every morning over the course of six months. I've also added stretches, some qi gong, tai chi once a week and various other activities, and finally my spine is sitting back almost where it should be! I'm so overjoyed! I was beginning to think I'd be all twisted up for life. The angels were even singing that nursery song about "There was a crooked man who walked a crooked mile..." trying to get my attention before I made too much of a mess out of myself!

When I told someone what I was up to, they said, "Yes but you love exercise." I laughed. I love sleeping in more, quite honestly, but I just had to make a choice - be in pain or listen to my body's needs. Truthfully I hated the situps at first because I'd become quite weak and they hurt. I couldn't do the number I thought I should. Now I enjoy them because I have some muscles finally and it feels good to move. But for the first three months I had to make myself get up early and go for it. My body was happy. I was grumpy!! Now we're both overjoyed!

So many of us don't make any positive physical changes because the ultimate goals we set seem overwhelming. I knew it would take me a long time to get my body back in order. And I knew I couldn't do much at a time since I was pressed for time and also not very strong at first. But one pull-up is better than none. And one situp is better than none, and gradually they've increased.

Also listening to your body is so much better than ignoring it. I do not diet or deprive myself, but I do ask my body what it wants - as a result I eat a lot of very healthy stuff, and the occasional overindulgence as well. Since I give my body what it wants, its a rare case when I stuff myself with things that don't satisfy me. If your body wants rice pudding and you don't have any and you eat everything else in the house, you will still crave that rice pudding. If you want a piece of chocolate and don't just go for it, God knows what else you might plow through. For me it could be a bag of chips, a huge helping of salsa, some fruit, nuts, hummus with pita chips, and chocolate milk, and oh FINALLY, that chocolate!! If I'd had one first, I'd be satisfied! My mom once read that if you craved something you should have a tiny portion - well she ate a whole Pepperidge Farm coconut cake, one square inch at a time! I'm sure if she sat down with one big piece right away that would have been enough.

If you have emotional cravings you can ask yourself before reaching for food - what do I really need? Nine times out of ten when I'm eating emotionally I just need to call a friend and work something out. Or I need rest instead and I'm just overtired. Ask and then listen - your body and soul are wise beyond measure. Eating is a form of touch and most of us in this society are touch deprived because we don't hug as much and hold hands as other cultures do. The angels solved that one for me by telling me to put a special blanket around me and invite them in. Sure enough the blanket started buzzing! I can vouch for the fact that a hug from Archangel Michael is FAR more yummy than a gourmet meal or even the best of snacks :)

So this week, if you haven't already, start to make friends with your amazing body and ask it more what it wants and what it needs, and listen - in doing so you'll step right on the road to greater well being.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Relax, breathe, ask for help

I didn't expect the angel message that came today. Some weeks I know ahead of time what they will discuss and other weeks I sit in total trust and am awed by the energy that comes through with the message. With today's message there was such tenderness. The angels want us to know that we don't ever need to feel suffering if we can only ask to feel God's love. That doesn't mean we won't have challenges, problems, etc., but you know how much easier everything is when we feel loved. Feeling God's love makes anything do-able.

The other night I was running on very little sleep. For some reason I hadn't got good sleep the previous two nights and was finally drifting off into a beautiful slumber. Just as I started to slip into deep peace, one of my dogs got me up. I love them so I got up and let them out. Half an hour later I was drifting to sleep again when the other dog got me up. Same story... Anyway I finally fell into a deep slumber until 3:30 when I heard one of my doggies pacing and woke up to find that the dear little soul had an accident on the rug. I was exhausted and didn't feel like cleaning house at 3:30 am. I let the dogs out and had a tantrum all by myself for about five minutes until I woke up enough to realize that this wasn't going to solve anything. After cleaning up, I sat and prayed. "God I want to feel the peace that surpasses all understanding, please. As soon as possible too please. I love my dogs, but I am so tired I can't do this without you." And I sat, breathed, and waited. The peace came over me very quickly - a deliciously sweet sensation that feels a bit like sitting in a jacuzzi with soft bubbles from the inside out. My body relaxed, my breathing deepened and I felt a profound love for my dogs, my life, my home, and even for being awake in the middle of the night. I cleaned the house, let the dogs in and drifted into an hour of the deepest sleep I'd had in ages and woke up feeling awesome.

I practice asking for this love all the time so I can get out of the way and receive it when I need it. Little accidents in the middle of the night may seem like a big deal but they're small compared to the bigger upsets in life. And yet if we practice breathing and relaxing and asking to feel God's love when we're calm, then it is much easier to get our 'little' minds out of the way when we really need the help. The love is always there. The breath helps us calm down and open to feel it. If we're so used to hearing the voice of our own ego complaining or worrying, we can't feel it. We're tuned into a different broadcast. So practice breathing and calming and waiting to feel God's love when things are calm. Each of you will feel it in your own way. For some it is a quiet peace, for others an electric aliveness. You'll know. There's no substitute for this feeling. There's no situation, thing, or person on earth that can make us feel this good and this alive. Its worth practicing several minutes until you can tune into it more easily. I'm still working on learning to do this more quickly. I'd like to experience that love every minute of my life. So, as the angels say, back to relax, breathe deeply, and wait...

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A grateful heart

Even with the economy in a mess I choose to feel abundant. The angels are right about gratitude. The more we focus on it, the richer we feel. Sitting by the creek for five hours a few weekends ago I felt wealthy beyond measure - all the money in the world couldn't have added to an experience that was absolutely free.

Because I am grateful for everything I seem to attract wonderful assistance in life. A few weeks ago I was giving thanks for the ability to assist people who were having a hard time this year. However that particular week, I had given so many discounts I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to pay my own bills. "Give me a sign God, that it is still ok ... I know you guided me." I prayed. A black car cut me off in traffic with the license plate "OK2GIV"!! Got it angels! I laughed for an hour!

I am always grateful for food and the ability to share it with friends, so it was no surprise that the "99cent only" store, just two miles from my home started carrying amazing fruits and veggies a few years ago. A few weeks ago I got 4 pineapples, 6 kiwis, brownie mix, lemon pudding, 2 lbs green beans, 10 lbs potatoes, 4 pints of cherry tomatoes, 3 yellow squash, 8 red peppers, 6 hearts of romaine lettuce, 8 baby cucumbers, 2 heads of broccoli, and a pint of delicious strawberries for $23.33. I was having a birthday dinner for a friend and fed four girls plus takeout, plus meals for me for a several days with all that food.

A grateful heart always attracts more. I thanked God for my clothes the other day and asked for a new blue shirt from Chico's since I the one I got at the outlet is getting a little tattered. Lo and behold, I found a $40 shirt at the thrift store for $5 - brand new, in my size!

These are simple silly little manifestations. Where the gratitude really counts is when you don't know how you're going to pay a bill, or you've just been hit by some surprise and you need to remember that the rest of your life is good and focus on that. Gratitude has saved me when I need to fix a situation in life and don't know how, or when I want to achieve something that isn't going fast enough. I can always stop and say thank you for what IS working. If you play with being grateful for the small stuff, it is much easier to muster up gratitude and raise your vibration when more difficult situations arise.

Many of us don't know how lucky we really are. A large percentage of people in the world are without decent shelter, food, water, clothing, and health care. In rural and impoverished areas in the world simple cuts get so infected that people lose limbs. A tube of Neosporin, or a $1 vaccine, could change a life. When I went to Peru in 1997 and saw the joyful but impoverished people there, I vowed to never take my life for granted. Every time I turn on a hot shower I give thanks for the heat and the water. Its fine to want more in life but we can't forget to be grateful for all we have been given.

So this week, want what you want, honestly and ask for it, but also choose to be grateful, truly and deeply. You'll see how the universe responds with little surprises. Best of all you'll have a full heart, a happy outlook, and a recognition of truth.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Three Cups of Tea

Happy Independence Day to all those who celebrate it! I often think of the freedoms we have in our country and am grateful. There are people all over the world who do not have the ability to feel safe in their own homes, or run to the corner grocery store for food. There are people who cannot speak up, or even go to school. We take so much for granted.

I recently read a book that touched my heart. I didn't know what it was about, but the title intrigued me - "Three Cups of Tea." (www.ikat.org) It ends up the book was about a man who failed to climb K2, the second largest peak in the Himalayas, and weak and sick wandered into a tiny village in Pakistan that wasn't even on the map. While there, the humble villagers gave him the best of their meager resources and helped him become strong again. He was amazed to see that the only education the children received was from a teacher that visited a few times a week. They had to scratch their lessons in the dirt with sticks because they had no paper and no pencils. He vowed to come back and build them a school. That proved to be a problem since upon returning to the US he lost his girlfriend, ended up living in his car, and working double shifts. He rented a typewriter and wrote over 500 letters to celebrities requesting assistance. At long last, he was connected with a billionaire who gave him enough to build the first school.

This is a story of sheer faith and determination - and of being in the flow of grace. To date, Greg Mortenson has built 78 permanent schools and 48 temporary ones and believes that peace in the middle east comes only by educating the children, esp. women. Kids who have an education and opportunity are seldom the ones who join the terrorist enclaves. They are a blessing to their community and educate others. One child at a time, this man is changing the world. Now that is freedom to me - the freedom to live your life purpose without a clue how it is going to work is demonstrated again and again throughout this book. Mortenson even started a "Pennies for Peace" (www.penniesforpeace.org) campaign to help school children becomes socially conscious - they can collect pennies for his cause and know they have helped children across the world. $1 buys an education for one child for a month, and $1 pays a teacher over there for a day. We have no idea how lucky we are. That Starbucks drink could educate four kids, and I'm not saying give up Starbucks (heavens no!), but maybe every now and then skip one and donate it to a worthy cause, whatever that might be. Now that's freedom - the freedom to change a life!

If you feel trapped, remember, that to start the wheels in motion to change your life you only need one new and different thought. That's not such a difficult thing after all.