Category Archives: Personal Growth

Life Without Henry – Seasons In The Sun


© Michael Cerkas

An important part of my life ended last August 12th, when I laid next to, and watched, my closest friend and companion take his last breath.  His spirit was so strong his entire life, yet at that last moment, it was silent and peaceful, as it dissolved into another form of existence.  Like many aspects of our journey, it was at that instant I realized the enormity of my loss and experienced a pristine clarity and appreciation for life.  Indeed, this was no ordinary friend and companion.  It was Sir Henry, my closest of friends, my 14-year-old Golden Retriever; well, 1 day short of 14 years.

© Michael Cerkas

Reflective of his entire life, Henry left on his terms.  And truthfully, that was a blessing for me, as he spared me the horror of needing to take that dreaded and last visit to the Vet office, to end a pet’s life for them.  You see, even if that is the best decision to be made, to end suffering (for both pet and pet owner), Survivor’s Guilt runs rampant for a long time, as you feel like an executioner.  Indeed, it has taken me eight months to be able to share my emotions about Henry with you.

© Michael Cerkas

“As Henry departed right next to me on that early Monday morning, I laid motionless, a feeling of emptiness permeating my every thought.  All the great memories of Henry with me, along with my entire family, played like old movies in my mind.  Happy thoughts, of days gone by, of Sir Henry, from our first day together when he was just a pup, through the gamut of experiences in his (our) life, he pranced like a prince, played like a happy child, pleased others without hesitation, and commanded respect as a noble and regal royal; which is truly how we (everyone) saw him.”

© Michael Cerkas

And yet, as these treasured memories danced in my heart, the reality of what was before me struck and hurt me like a bolt of lightning.  Sir Henry had moved on and I was still here.  The truly worst aspect was that I knew what I had to do next.  Locate and Prepare a final resting place, along with a fitting burial enclosure, worthy of the likes of Sir Henry.  Without question, a few of the more difficult days I can remember.

©Michael Cerkas

Being the craftsman that I have come to be, I searched for the best material, the best accessories, and proceeded to build the vessel that would securely and protectively carry Henry to the Rainbow Bridge.  As an understatement, there were many tears, deep sadness, and farewells.  Yet there was equally, dignity, respect, and bittersweet happiness, as Sir Henry being the alpha male and leader his entire life, would fittingly pave the way ahead, as I watched him fade into a memory from my life.

©Michael Cerkas

His last sunset here was an amazingly beautiful, peaceful, and brilliant August evening.  His presence was felt more strongly in my life than by many people who were and are in it.  Indeed, there was and will always be, something very very special about this one.  Difficult to explain, but a tangibly spiritual presence.  Henry made me a better human being.  He helped me to maintain my sanity in a chaotic and complex world.  He was abundantly special.  And he now resides on our property, appropriately in the area he loved to roam most, surrounded by trees, nature, and love.

This is Life without Henry.  No more beautiful smile; nor physical sense of his positive energy, no Henry to greet me at the door, nor to lay beside me just to be with me.  No bumping his head under my arm to take him for a walk, or to simply afford him some always deserved attention.

©Michael Cerkas

©Michael Cerkas

Only memories, of his “tangle” with that porcupine when he was two and the hundred quills he inherited from the encounter; of him nonstop playing with his favorite beach toy; of his attentive and watchful obedience; of his priceless habit of carrying his leash in his mouth as he walked me; of his enjoyment of sitting, watching, and loving the warmth of the fireplace; of his determination to catch that squirrel in the brush pile.  We were kindred spirits and Henry was all these things, and more… to me.

©Michael Cerkas

Sir Henry was a force of nature, so strong, you could feel his presence and connect with him more easily than with most people; without saying a single word.  There is gratitude in my heart for having had the privilege of his friendship and companionship for all but a day of fourteen years.  There is satisfaction and happiness for enabling him to spend twelve of his fourteen years at

©Michael Cerkas

our retirement lake property, sitting on the front porch, soaking up the Northwoods air, watching people walk by, exploring the woods, chasing animals, basking in the sun, swimming in the lake, enjoying pontoon rides on the flowage, being such a pleasant yet determined creature of God.  Oh, how I miss my closest friend.

©Michael Cerkas

And like a soft, wistful breeze, he quietly, yet nobly moved on.  And Sir Henry wouldn’t have had it any other way.

 

 

Goodbye to You, my trusted Friend…

Life is a Bittersweet Symphony…  Yet, play it, we must.

 

 

 

 

Making Sense of God – The Effervescence of Eternity


Credit: Pexels

As human beings, we interact with the world as physical organisms; that is to say, we use and respond with our senses.  And as a result, we spend a lifetime conditioning ourselves in this way, yet God created us in His image, and that image reflects a Trinity of consciousness; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  And to be specific, it is singularly, the Holy Spirit that God infused into our being as humans, that sets us apart from other “organisms”.  It manifests itself as our conscience (aka, that little voice inside us), and guides us throughout our life; if we choose to listen to it, and act upon it.

When Jesus Christ graced the earth, as flesh and blood, like us, people could easily comprehend His authenticity and Truth, because they could speak with Him, touch Him, see Him, hear Him, even smell him.  Indeed, they got a taste of eternity, without even knowing it.  Similarly, To Believe is To See.

 

Credit: Pixabay

Upon His physical death, brilliant Resurrection, and subsequent glorious Ascension, however, our physical senses became inadequate to directly experiencing Jesus Christ, the human being; the physical organism.  To be sure, God supplanted the memory of the physical Saviour with non-direct methods/alternatives to positively communicate the still, living Jesus Christ to humanity.

Miracles, His work through others, nature/environment, the Holy Spirit, and Supernatural events have been recorded in time that point to the fact and reality that Jesus Christ (along with God and the Holy Spirit) is Alive and is living in eternity.  Body, Mind, and Soul are humanity’s trinity in the image of God, and our Portal to our next life.

 

“Likewise, where our human and physical senses end (hear, see, smell, touch, taste), our Divine or Godly senses begin.  Space and Time (body), via balance and equilibrium; Intuition (mind), via ESP; and Divine Communication (soul), via faith.  Collectively, these eight senses work together to enable and empower our ability to recognize, acknowledge, and embrace the True God throughout our entire earthly life, preparing us for a real, personal, and tangible reunion with God, upon our physical death.”

Credit: Pixabay

And because we were truly created in His image, it is understandable that we travel a similar path leading us into eternity.  Our physical birth, life, suffering, joy, pain, free will, and death, perfectly mimic that of Jesus Christ.  And it similarly goes without saying, that our destiny is an ascension into heaven for our Final Act.  But only, if we truly Believe in God, His Divine Nature, His Unbridled Power, His Perfect Being of Forgiveness, Grace, Love, Judgment, Justness, and His Eternal Presence.  For I is Singular For But One.

Achieving Heaven is truthfully simple, albeit perhaps not easy, yet completely within our control.  Established rules provide boundaries and desired/expected behaviors (Bible), and Free Will affords us the opportunity to create our own unique future via our thoughts, actions, and ultimately, accountability.

The 12 Seeds of Immortality


Courtesy: Pixabay.com

Life is precious, yes? Even more profound, is appreciating it. Indeed, perhaps, this is the most essential life skill to master.

The pure experiences of nature, our senses, and life’s lessons, distill in us our sense of purpose, being, goals, thoughts, and behaviors. Wisdom is a fleeting thing at best, nearly impossible to attain at worst. Yet we try.

And so it has come to being, my being, in that I believe I have discovered the seeds of immortality through experience, contemplation, observation, experimentation, and maybe a little bit of luck.

My good fortunes in life initially stem from being the youngest in my family. I had the opportunity to witness life as a child, through the eyes of my brothers and sisters. Indeed, what worked for them, along with what to avoid at all costs. They were, unknowingly, the best teachers I’ve come to realize. The luck came in the form of me recognizing the important moments in my life, analyzing their significance, and creating the path I followed throughout my youth, young adulthood, up to and including my present life.

Courtesy: Pixabay.com

And so, I’d like to share with you the 12 things in Life that will all but guarantee the essence of your life to live on forever… in the hearts and minds of those who love you.

Collectively, these paths of life intertwine and grow into and with one another, creating and developing an unstoppable force; the force of You.

It all begins with Feeling the Spirit. Our conscience is the Holy Spirit dwelling in our hearts, minds, and souls. To embrace it is the foundation of understanding our being and purpose in life. Better yet, to act upon its whispers to us.

In focusing on the positive energy in the world, we must Give Gratitude for Life. And not just our own, but every facet and manifestation of it on the planet. Cherish life, as it is precious, meaningful, beautiful; and finite.

Hand in hand, we must Demonstrate Goodwill through our thoughts, actions, and behaviors. In a Pay It Forward mentality, Karma is real and powerful. Develop Goodwill into more than a habit. Make it an instinct.

Recognizing and appreciating that we are not alone, Share the Love of God with others, by being an example of it. You just might be the only Bible someone experiences on a particular day. Be ready to teach as well as learn.

And in being aware of your role in the tapestry of life, use yours to Strengthen the Family, as it is the core that sustains you, nourishes you, emboldens you, and ultimately, helps to mold you into your future.

True wisdom exists when we Accept the Reality, Divinity, and Power of God. Life is no accident, we are not cosmic coincidences, but intelligent beings created by Intelligent Design. Breathe in the life force that is God.

Life is a lot more fun and enjoyable when we Advocate for Peace. We are all made uniquely and with purpose, yet because of that fact, it is nearly impossible to agree on everything with everybody. So, give Peace a chance.

We were born with senses, to not only understand the world around us, but also each other. And in following that learning, there is positive energy, tremendous power and goodness in the Physical Touch and Caring we extend to others in our Walk through Life.

Recognizing patterns in life, culture, family, and society, speaks of things people hold dear. Accordingly, Appreciate and Respect Tradition and others will do the same for you.

It is said that to Know and Not to Do is to Not Know. Following, we must Practice Discipleship through our lives as witness to God, in the interest of helping and supporting each other, and in teaching our children Right and Wrong.

As imperfect human beings, each of us has and will, undoubtedly hurt others through our words and/or actions. Life is a long journey, so the best approach to leveraging it in a positive light, is to Advocate Forgiveness, Reconciliation, and Healing. Humility is underrated.

And lastly, to set the example for others to see us more clearly, we must Demonstrate Compassion and Giving in our life to pay homage to our Creator. Indeed, to imitate His ways, actions, and life.

If (and when) we can successfully and effectively meld these 12 seeds into a living, breathing entity, it will grow deep and strong and cause our lives to be more meaningful, impactful, and memorable. And, in the Larger picture of life, isn’t that the ultimate goal each of us truly desires?  God Bless us all.

Faith As A Power Source


Intrinsic motivation has always intrigued me as a chess game intrigues a chess player.  Indeed, I have been driven my entire life, by multiple forces, yet one plateaus above all others.

Something inside me responds with energy and inertia when I am told I don’t have the skills, resources, determination or vision to accomplish some objective.  Is it simply a desire to succeed?  Or perhaps, the appeal of a challenge?  Maybe, to seek an opportunity to help others?  Or, to gain their approval?

“I believe, in my heart of hearts, the driving force that catapults and propels me forward to accomplish any worthwhile objective is the resulting opportunity for me to Witness that God provides whatever is necessary to accomplish His goal(s) through a sinner like me.”

Photo Credit: Pixaby

In short, I wholeheartedly crave the ability to credit God as my Power Source in every meaningful thing I do in my life; to Witness to Him as my Lord and Savior. To use His Power in my life to help others, to learn from others, and to help others find themselves and their faith.   Collectively, to grow His kingdom on earth.

I have asked myself many times, could it really be that simple?  Is God that powerful?  Is He that omnipotent?  Amazingly, is God that Real?  The answer, simply, is yes, Yes, YES, and YES!

“For some, personal power is derived by knowledge, others by the desire to succeed.  Still, others believe in a survival instinct of sorts, and yet others rely on successes that build self-confidence.  Certainly, there is no singular right answer.  All I know is that my motivation comes unilaterally and explicitly from my faith in God and all He provides, allows, bestows, offers, and wills.”

Photo Credit: Pixaby

Much like an athlete sets goals for him/herself, their focus yields a building block approach. The football player focuses on the next First Down before the Touchdown.  The Nascar driver each lap, before the finish line.  The Christian, the next opportunity to Witness, before their personal salvation and resurrection.  We are all, in fact, competitors and participants in the game of Life.  And, to be successful and grow, we must remain focused and aware of what is directly in front of us each and every day, regardless of the longer-term objective, goal, need or desire.

You see, faith is an incredibly powerful source of energy and Truth.  Both emanate from a single point of origin, God the Father.  Energy is created through inspiration, survival, fear, need, desire, protective instincts, indeed, love.  Truth, however, comes solely from God, is not to be confused with facts, and by design, is accompanied by and rooted in morality.  Man possesses no innate morals as morals are learned and man is imperfect.  True and objective morality, therefore must emanate from the creator as He is the teacher and is perfect.

Most assuredly, many people have heard the phrase, “Trust your Instincts”, yes?  And, in many circumstances and scenarios we face in our lives, our instincts come into play and focus on determining our actions and behavior.  Yet, at the core of our spirit and being, those instincts we all possess, are founded in morality, and morality originates singularly from God.  The point being that God influences and largely, controls the higher level direction and trajectory of each of our lives, whereas, we are simply charged with our thoughts, actions, behaviors, and ultimately, our choices.

In the end, collectively, a large objective of human life lies within each individual discovering their (our) purpose in life.  Once found, life transforms and ascends into something much more meaningful, worthy, and impactful; for us, and for all the other people we come into contact with, along the way.   Here is praying, hoping and wishing each of us is open to learning as much as we need to live a Purpose Driven Life.  In the big picture of eternity, it’s your life, so live it like you mean it.   Who do you want to be?  God Bless and Be Well.

 

 

Up Where We Belong


Diego Alves on Pexels.com

All of us have this insatiable desire to belong, to share, to possess the knowledge of our future; to be able to influence our future.  Indeed, to become our future.  And what hangs in the balance, what buoys our spirit, humbles our minds, and drives our determination; is faith.

Faith, in knowing there is much more to life than meets the eye; faith, in our salvation; faith, in life after death; faith, in God, The Son, and the Holy Spirit.  The kind of faith that people have been persecuted for having since the beginning of time, faith for which people have died, faith that people protect with their lives.

To be sure, the fundamental construct of faith is founded in the future, in knowing the past, in trusting God, in loving life.  And the reality of our collective existence is distilled into a single universal truth; to Believe is to See.

As much as our faith is centered around our singular existence, relationship and respective accountability with our Creator, it likewise is circular in nature, in that it involves the impact our lives have on others and others impact on us.  The whole of our being can best be described as an interconnected, interdependent conscious organism (spirit), et. al.

We spend our entire lives searching for those worldly areas where we belong, yet spend precious little time searching (and preparing) for the eternal life where we will belong into the infinity of time.  We must consequently examine our lives and ask ourselves; What are our priorities in contrast to what should be our priorities?

“At the opposite end of the spectrum is the beginning of new life, of being born, of witnessing the miracle itself, of acknowledging and accepting the awesome responsibility and privilege of becoming a parent.  And most importantly, nurturing, assisting, influencing, valuing and respecting that precious and amazing life; for it is your legacy as a child of God, your responsibility as a Christian, and your opportunity to enhance, enlighten and empower another ‘soul’ to serve and praise the Creator.”

– (Excerpt from My Amazing Life Is Not In Vein, Michael Cerkas)

Robert Eddison

To belong to anything involves prescribed values, thinking, behavior, priorities, commitment, and restraint.  Yet the key to these aspects is rooted in free will, not in indentured servitude.  Each of us chooses where we belong, in part, by our desires, and in LARGE part, by our actions.

In choosing where we belong, remember that Love trumps Hate, Good is more powerful than Evil, and actions indeed have consequences.  So, in those famous words of the Grail Knight (portrayed by Robert Eddison), in the 1989 film classic, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade…..  Choose Wisely.

 

God Bless You and Be well.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (Holy Grail Scene)

 

(Up Where We Belong: Joe Cocker & Jennifer Warnes)
Who knows what tomorrow brings
In a world few hearts survive
All I know is the way I feel
When it’s real, I keep it alive
The road is long
There are mountains in our way
But we climb a step every day
Love lift us up where we belong
Where the eagles cry
On a mountain high
Love lift us up where we belong
Far from the world below
Up where the clear winds blow
Some hang on to used to be
Live their lives looking behind
All we have is here and now
All our lives, out there to find
The road is long
There are mountains in our way
But we climb a step every day
Love lift us up where we belong
Where the eagles cry
On a mountain high
Love lift us up where we belong
Far from the world we know
Where the clear winds blow
Time goes by
No time to cry
Life’s you and I
Alive today
Love lift us up where we belong
Where the eagles cry
On a mountain high
Love lift us up where we belong
Far from the world we know
Where the clear winds blow
Love lift us up where we belong
Where the eagles cry
On a mountain high
Love lift us up where we belong

The Righteous Side Of Reverence


black and white cemetery christ church

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Throughout time, people across the world have demonstrated a deep reverence for the deity within their culture, history, and tradition.  Reverence steeped in profound respect, submission, and orthodoxy.  Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Taoism, among others.

Many of these deities have common traits; wisdom, insight, calmness, overpowering presence, generosity, and kindness as examples.  Likewise, each of them emphasizes specific behaviors that are required of followers to comply with as believers.

belief bible book business

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

For Christianity, there are the Ten Commandments and the Words of the Bible, albeit, the core set of rules and expected behaviors for Christians to adhere.  Like many philosophers and thinkers, however, the inevitable question raised in seek of answers revolves around the “Why”.  As in, Why must I follow this rule?  What future does following this rule provide?  And conversely, What is the penalty for violating this rule?

The Bible is a collection of 66 books, written by different authors at different points in time.  The miraculous reality is a common theme, even though many of the authors of the 66 books never met each other, let alone, lived during the same period of time.

man holding sheep statuette

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Often overlooked, at the core and foundation of the Bible and the Ten Commandments rests Morality.  At the base of what is right and wrong, the morality of life was established and handed down by Jesus Christ and given to Moses to share with humankind.  Of all that is ethical, just and right, the Word of God embodies morality for the ages.  Mankind has attempted to define morality, yet has continuously come up short, as incapable of divine wisdom.  Conversely, Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit and God (Divine Trinity), as the Supreme Being and Eternal Lord, singularly possesses and represents perfect knowledge and Truth.  This fact was exemplified by the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, followed by His Ascension into Heaven.

And without doubt, perfect knowledge and truth are accompanied and characterized by Supreme Power;  A power not of this world.

In truth, it is not enough to show reverence; it is not enough to offer respect.  It is only enough when we understand and acknowledge the Righteous Side of Reverence.

Comprehend the immense and unending Grace of God; Witness His Sovereign Power in the lives of His people; Testify to His Greatness with your life.  That… Is how you will live for eternity.

Which Side will You be on?  God Bless you, Be well.

If Today Was Your Last Day (Nickelback):
My best friend gave me the best advice
He said, “Each day’s a gift and not a given right.
Leave no stone unturned, leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by.
That first step you take is the longest stride.”
If today was your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say “goodbye” to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past
Donate every dime you had?
If today was your last day
Against the grain should be a way of life
What’s worth the prize is always worth the fight
Every second counts ’cause there’s no second try
So live it like you’ll never live it twice
Don’t take the free ride in your own life
If today was your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say “goodbye” to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past
Donate every dime you had?
And would you call old friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories
Would you forgive your enemies?
And would you find that one you’re dreamin’ of?
Swear up and down to God above
That you finally fall in love
If today was your last day
If today was your last day
Would you make your mark by mending a broken heart?
You know it’s never too late to shoot for the stars
Regardless of who you are
So do whatever it takes
‘Cause you can’t rewind a moment in this life
Let nothin’ stand in your way
‘Cause the hands of time are never on your side
If today was your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say “goodbye” to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past
Donate every dime you had?
(Would you? Would you?)
And would you call old friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories
Would you forgive your enemies?
And would you find that one you’re dreamin’ of?
Swear up and down to God above
That you finally fall in love
If today was your last day

Eternity Road (The Moody Blues):
Hark listen here he comes
Hark listen here he comes
Turning, spinning, Catherine wheeling
Forever changing
There’s no beginning
Speeding through a charcoal sky
Observe the truth we cannot lie
Travelling eternity road
What will you find there?
Carrying your heavy load
Searching to find a peace of mind
You’ll see us all around
You’ll see us all around
Turning, spinning, Catherine wheeling
Forever changing
There’s no beginning
You’re so very far from home
And so very much alone
Travelling eternity road
What will you find there?
Carrying your heavy load
Searching to find a peace of mind

In The Course Of A Lifetime…


wood bridge cute sitting

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As a child (and sometimes even as an adult), when you’re waiting for something or someone, time seems to stand still.  Yet, concurrently, when you’re having the time of your life, time slips away like a “Thief in the Night”.

Each of these events feel as real as the light of day, yet most logical people understand that time, as we know it, trudges on in perfect cadence within the universe, unaffected by our physical presence and undeterred in its marching band procession into eternity.

shallow focus photography of hourglass

Photo by Jordan Benton on Pexels.com

Most assuredly, time warps and truly accelerates as we mature and physically age.  Memories of our past accumulate and simply add to the weight of time on our hearts, minds and souls.  And in contrast, our souls never really age, even as they mature.  Our souls are everlasting orbs of energy that will, without question, outlive our carbon life form shells.

 

“The key to grasping in crystalline fashion, the significance of our being comes into perfect focus when we step outside of our own lives and dwell on the constructs of Love, Salvation, and Redemption.  For it is only when we acknowledge, accept and internalize these timeless and abstract emotions, that we come to understand just how special each of us genuinely are, and accordingly, how incredibly precious and delicate this life and its realities become, in contrast to the minute details of life, that in truth, consume the lion’s share percentage of it.”

There are several lessons for us to internalize:

  • Live “in the moment”
  • Don’t hold grudges; learn how to forgive
  • Recognize the Power of Family
  • Never procrastinate those difficult conversations with loved ones
  • Erase the word “Regret” from your vocabulary
  • Tell them how much you love them and how much they mean to you
  • In Testimony to God, live your life to demonstrate how Thankful you are
  • Value your Parents and appreciate who they are as children of God
    • A Parent’s job is anything But easy
  • Forget their human presence, because in Truth, they are immortal spiritual beings

smiling man and woman wearing jackets

Photo by Tristan Le on Pexels.com

Call your Parents…

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.  – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Forever….. means Forever.

Mother and Child Reunion (Paul Simon)
No I would not give you false hope
On this strange and mournful day
But the mother and child reunion
Is only a motion away
Oh, little darling of mine
I can’t for the life of me
Remember a sadder day
I know they say let it be
But it just don’t work out that way
And the course of a lifetime runs
Over and over again
No I would not give you false hope
On this strange and mournful day
But the mother and child reunion
Is only a motion away
Oh, little darling of mine
I just can’t believe it’s so
Though it seems strange to say
I never been laid so low
In such a mysterious way
And the course of a lifetime runs
Over and over again

Good Riddance (Time of Your Life / Green Day)
Another turning point, a fork stuck in the road
Time grabs you by the wrist, directs you where to go
So make the best of this test and don’t ask why
It’s not a question, but a lesson learned in time
It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right
I hope you had the time of your life
So take the photographs and still frames in your mind
Hang it on a shelf in good health and good time
Tattoos of memories and dead skin on trial
For what it’s worth it was worth all the while
It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right
I hope you had the time of your life
It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right
I hope you had the time of your life
It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right
I hope you had the time of your life

 

I Love This Life!


affection chalk color conceptual

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Undeniably, Love is the single-most powerful force in the universe.  It motivates, it heals, it transforms; and it endures.  Love is the DNA of creation.  Understandably, Love is God and God is Love.

Life is God’s gift to humanity.  Indeed, the entire spectrum of emotions and experiences; love, anticipation, community, brotherhood, compassion, excitement, gratitude, humility, joy, solitude, among others.  Yet, to maintain balance, perspective and context; sadness, grief, fear, loneliness, anxiety, desperation, yes, even hatred, come along for the ride.

“And because of the Free Will that God granted us, we are compelled to make judgments and choices, and set priorities within our lives; and then, live with the consequences of those freedoms.  And you’ve heard it before, with authority comes responsibility; specifically, a spiritual accountability for our souls.”

220px-star_of_life2.svg_The regulators, of course, for our lives, are our attitude and personal discipline.  I prefer to be an optimist, a helper, and work to inspire those around me with positive energy.  My desire to accept the privilege to meet Jesus Christ in heaven fuels my discipline.  He likewise serves as my inspiration, as He is the nucleus within my soul.

I choose to be who I am, what I think, where I go, who I engage, and when I give thanks for the abundance of gifts I have been bestowed, knowing that life can seem an eternity yet be as short as the dash.  The beautiful natural environment is ours to enjoy, along with its abundant flora and fauna, indeed, each other.  I shudder at the magnificent beauty of our world.  It is incomprehensible for me, then, not to possess an intense and sincere gratitude for everything in my life, good and not so good.  Profoundly, gratitude FOR my life.

backlit cemetery christianity clouds

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Likewise, none of us are perfect, and accordingly, as difficult as it is, I strive to offer forgiveness when warranted, as well as to seek it when I hurt others and commit sins.  Prayer complements our actions in life and opens a direct communication channel with God.  The essential aspect is to never stop striving to improve as a child of God.

Most assuredly, as it was written, no person knows the day, the hour and the moment when Jesus Christ will return to fulfill bible prophecy.  It is a mystery, a secret, by design.  So, until that time arrives, I will wholeheartedly, unashamedly, and unapologetically, Love my Life… because God Knows, When Will It End?

I Love This Life (LOCASH)

The Secret – Planet Earth

 

 

Will Your Legacy Be The Fire Or The Embers?


d day cemetery

Photo by Veronika Valdova on Pexels.com

The true permanence of anything worthwhile in this world is its legacy.  The reputation it earns, the light it shines in your heart, the image it paints upon your soul, the ability to change your views, direction, path and future.

 

 

 

 

True Legacy is born when you pass…

It becomes crystal clear as glass.

Then it leaves an indelible mark behind…

To be searched, in waiting to find.

mount rushmore

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

From the moment we become an object of this world, each of us create an unmistakable imprint upon everything we encounter, developing our self as an instrument of God, whether we are aware of it or not.   And as much as our life is our own, it’s remainder is found in the memories of others we met and touched along the way, the lives we impacted, those lost and saved.

Admittedly, memories that can empower, inspire, motivate, yet equally, sadden, weaken or hamper.  And ever so slight, is the difference between these ends of the spectrum, whether it be a word, an act, a derived emotion; indeed, a feeling.

red lighted candle

Photo by icon0.com on Pexels.com

We are all given ample and tremendous gifts that define us, drive us, and emblazon us as flames of the fire that is our spirit and our life.  A fire over which we have complete dominion and determination whether that fire warms, comforts and elevates; or burns, damages and destroys.

“Indeed, legacy is a very tangible and permanent entity, as it literally takes on a life of its own when we are separated from this earth.  When our physical being returns to dust and our spiritual soul travels beyond the confines of this celestial body we call home.”

Our senses drive the construction of our legacy, yet our heart, mind and soul effectively transcribe our story, give it form and substance, and package it for the world to experience without filters… forever.

sunset hands love woman

Photo by Stokpic on Pexels.com

And as with so many other aspects of our being, there are lessons to be drawn, lived and learned, arguably the most important being our legacy; Your legacy and My legacy.  Will it be a positive, constructive and endearing story that others treasure, or a terse, cold and unattractive horror piece that most desire to leave unexamined, avoided and feared?

Like a fire, legacy is a powerful force and it behooves each of us to take extreme caution in creating and nurturing it to become a true reflection of our soul and essence, a fond memory of us, a sweet aroma of our life, a touching tribute to the extent we have touched and enhanced the lives of others around us.

Here is wishing each of us create a legacy of Love.  What will Your legacy be; a powerful fire or a flickering ember?  #DontGiveUpOnLove

Dark Star Lyrics: (Rachel Reinert)

I’m not scared of the unknown floating out here in the night sky on my own but I get afraid I’ll be forgotten already had my chance and lost it for good.
Nothings ever what it seems, I was trying to live someone else’s dream I get afraid I’ll be remembered not for the fire but the embers for all the almost was and what it could have beens.
You can’t see me where I am, hiding out here in the moonlight shadows, You can’t see me from where you are, Cause I am a dark star.
All the light that I have left, it ain’t burned out it just hasn’t reached you yet, I want you to feel it, yeah you just gotta feel it.
You can’t see me where I am, hiding out here in the moonlight shadows, You can’t see me from where you are, Cause I am a dark star.

All Things Must Pass (LYRICS)
Sunrise doesn’t last all morning, A cloudburst doesn’t last all day.   Seems my love is up And has left you with no warning,  It’s not always been this gray.    All things must pass, All things must pass away.   Sunset doesn’t last all evening, A mind can blow those clouds away.   After all this My love is up and must be leaving, It’s not always been this gray.   All things must pass, All things must pass away.   All things must pass. None of life’s dreams can last.   So, I must be on my way To face another day, And darkness only stays at nighttime.   In the morning it will fade away, Daylight is good At arriving at the right time.  It’s not always gonna be this gray.   All things must pass, All things must pass away. All things must pass, All things must pass away.

Lyrics:
Everybody’s talking at me
I don’t hear a word they’re saying
Only the echoes of my mind
People stopping, staring
I can’t see their faces
Only the shadows of their eyes
I’m going where the sun keeps shining
Through the pouring rain
Going where the weather suits my clothes
Banking off of the northeast winds
Sailing on a summer breeze
And skipping over the ocean like a stone
I’m going where the sun keeps shining
Through the pouring rain
Going where the weather suits my clothes
Banking off of the northeast winds
Sailing on

Love Changes Everything


lightning and tornado hitting village

Photo by Ralph W. lambrecht on Pexels.com

Natural forces abound in our world; gravity, solar, wind, fire, earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, avalanches, etc.  Indeed, these powerful and untamed forces of nature largely still hold humanity hostage, with the minor consolation that we have learned to adapt to and somewhat protect ourselves from them on a daily basis.

Likewise, there are equally powerful forces of the mind; hate, jealousy, fear, deception, survival, etc.  Yet, admittedly powerless from a physical view, the forces of the mind can overcome the powerful natural forces of our planet.  And that is precisely because our minds are primarily an untapped resource, with unlimited potential, if effectively used.

Heart_in_Hand_ValuesThe obvious question begging to be asked, then, is, how does this enormous potential get accessed, leveraged and realized?  Unequivocally, the answer that unlocks this enigma and illustrates an unbounded power, is that elusive, yet desired thing we know as Love.  For in the larger picture of life, it is love and love alone, that changes everything.  And it begins with changing yourself.

We’ve all seen and heard about situations where people, young and old, large and small, have been able to muster literally super-human strength and will, and accomplish the unfathomable, when presented with a life or death scenario.  Many times, the response witnessed is inexplicable, yet very real.  Without question, Love Is Real.

“Throughout the ages, many people have never fully experienced the construct we call Love, yet pursue it we have.  And that pursuit is very relentless, for so many others have experienced love and have demonstrated its seemingly supernatural characteristics, capabilities, and impact upon the world.  Indeed, impact upon humanity.”

Ying_YangSo, then, what exactly is Love?  How do we recognize it?  Even more importantly, how do we experience it and what can we do to retain it?  How can we share Love with others?  Undeniably, these are the most sought after challenges known to humanity.

For this author, a simplistic approach yields the most understanding.  Accordingly, Love is a feeling, an emotion, a motivator, a humbler, an invigorating and desired state of mind.  And even though Love is all these things, as a goal, it remains elusive and difficult to understand for so many.

Revisiting that simplistic, perhaps, universal approach; for me, Love is completely illustrated, understood and recognized; when we view it as God.  God Is Love.  And likewise, the absence of God, begets the absence of Love.  Conversely, the presence of God, yields the presence of Love.

BibleLogically, then, if we wish to fully experience Love, we must fully emulate God in our lives; understanding, however, that we are flawed as human beings, we are sinners, and only experience Love by the grace of God.   sin

Their exists an instruction book of sorts, about God and Love, and that my friends, is the Bible.  It is our Study Guide to being able to recognize, understand and Love, God, ourselves, and others.

Acknowledge God as your personal savior.  Learn as much as you can about Him.  Pattern your life around that learning and understanding of God.  Recognize your imperfection as a human being.  Strive to seek God’s forgiveness when required.  Learn to love others by loving yourself.  Avoid sin as much as humanly possible, all forms of sin.  Create your life plan so that its path is Love and its destination, Heaven.  And above all, never lose faith in God.

Lyrics from Song for the Season (A Hallmark Movie/1999):

I’m holding back, a flood of tears,
Just thinking bout those happy years,
Like all the good times that are no more,
My love is gone, gone forever more,
Silence so deep only my soul can hear
Says now the path is what I fear,
The future, isn’t what it used to be,
Only today is all that’s promised me.
But In the dark of winter I still can sing,
Cause God has sent The Baby King,
Whatever troubles this old world may bring,
Christmas reminds me that love can
change everything, changes everything.
We’re all driven by the winds of change,
Seems like nothing ever stays the same,
It’s Faith that guides me around the bend,
Life’s forever beginning and beginning again.
In the dark of winter I still can sing,
Cause God has sent The Baby King,
Whatever troubles this old world may bring,
Christmas reminds me that love can change everything,
Love can change everything.
SnowBrains

The best source of intelligent snow ski & ride news, weather, photos, and videos.

mathias sager

Awareness Intelligence

The Godly Chic Diaries

BY GRACE THROUGH FAITH

simple Ula

I want to be rich. Rich in love, rich in health, rich in laughter, rich in adventure and rich in knowledge. You?

Take a walk with me

Just another WordPress.com site

Under Reconstruction

Hope isn't an emotion, but a daily choice.

Beautiful Life with Cancer

Discovering the Gift

Journey Through Recovery

Amy McCalister's Journey Through Recovery

Get Reading Now

"Infuse your Soul with an IV of Inspiring & Creative Words"

THE RIVER WALK

Daily Thoughts and Meditations as we journey together with our Lord.

authorshelpingauthors.wordpress.com/

AHA! A library of articles providing instant access to resources and tips, written by authors, for authors. Never a charge for membership, the door is always open! Come on in and stay awhile...

Bible Aid

Finding Hope in Christ

James J Need

Writer & Mind Coach

Mind's Seat

Set your mind on the things above

Creating Space, LLC.

Creating space in your life for faith, family and moxie

On the Brighter Side

A place to feel motivated and inspired ♥

GREATNESSwithin

together we can create a more prosperous, just, peaceful, sustainable world. Inspiration awakens the world.

ellesblognotes's Blog

seek and ye shall find

%d bloggers like this: