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.

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