Spiritual

Why Nationalism isn’t the Cure

By: Jana Greene

I know it’s hard.
I know people are pissing you off.
I know we are living in unprecedented times, and are thoroughly sick of doing so.
I know we are desperate for someone to fix it – all of it. Our local leaders, our politicians, our President…. somebody, anybody.
I know people are selfish and leaning left or right.
I know you are tired of America not being what it used to be (which for some people, is a good thing.)
But even the lawmakers and keepers don’t have the answers. They never did.
If who sits in leadership determines how you represent Christ, please consider that Nationalsim over compassion in history has been a recipe for disaster.
From Herod’s decrees to Germany in the 30’s, to even old Mom and Pop apple pie America led by The Greatest Generation, there were citizens of each who benefited from the actions of their leaders, and citizenry who found themself oppressed, or worse.
Don’t lose sight.
Don’t lose hope.
God has not given us a spirit of fear.
Yes, even Jesus got angry, righteously….as you may feel your anger is righteous.
But he kind of threw a justifiable tantrum and moved on with the business of loving people.
He didn’t stew on it for years.
The world is a #%@&$ MESS!
But it’s the world God so loved. Just as it is.
Just as we were.
We have all “had it up to here” at this point, but please try not to let it make you bitter.
The continual anger will get under your skin and fester, and like an infection, will mostly only affect you, not change the world. It will not affect the people you despise or the state of the country one whit.
Jesus was the Prince of Peace.
Surely we can shift our focus on all the ways our country and the world are effed up, to loving the least of these?
Just some Thursday morning thoughts.

Spiritual

God Winks Look Like Kindness

By: Jana Greene

I’m in a terrible mood.
Didn’t sleep last night.
Shoulder blown out.
Systemic pain off the charts.
Worried about many things.
The next two weeks is a constant treadmill of doctors visits and medical procedures.
But God…
But God keeps winking at me, in spite of it all.
My prayers have become less “God, show me you love me” to “God, increase my awareness that you love me, so I can love others.”
The checker at Trader Joe’s this morning could not have known that I’m having a rough time. It was the standard transaction, albeit friendly, as TJ is know for. But then he plopped this into my cart. I was dumbfounded.
“Just a little something to brighten your day,” he says. I can tell he is smiling even though he he is wearing a mask. His eyes are smiling.
The flowers are beautiful, and even my favorite color!
You see, God loves us with kind acts and nature.
I felt lighter leaving the store, and popped in a CD because Music is Life. And it was a long lost CD my daughter had made for us after her senior trip to NYC, which I chaperoned. Every song had memories attached to it.
Another God wink.
God, make me aware of your love, given in abundance. Every kindness perpetrated by others (whether they know it or not) is a message from our Source.
Every cell in every flower on every tree (or in every shopping cart) is filled with the blueprint of his love. He didn’t have to make them so beautiful, but he did.
He didn’t have to make himself flesh to jump into our pain and suffering so that we are never alone. But he does.
Papa God, increase our awareness.
Increase our capacity to show kindness.
Let us see you in the beauty of your creation, which is really impressive, by the way.
It’s good to know our moods don’t get in the way of his love for us.
Although my heart still has a remnant of heaviness for the people I love who are going through a difficult life season, my prayer is that God winks at them too.
Whatever you’re going through, I know how it feels to be convinced he is not in your corner, if he even exists at all. I get it!
But please know you are deeply loved.
And the fact that we – in all our messy, chaotic humanity – can be a part of that Vis-à-Vis loving one another?
Priceless.

Spiritual

Meditation is a Real Thing, Y’all…and it Works!

Give yourself the gift of learning to meditate. ❤️

By: Jana Greene

Y’all, I have to share. Just got back from having the shoulder MRI. It required dye and lidocaine injected directly into my shoulder capsule, which I thoroughly did not enjoy.

But the craziest thing happened during the 40 minute MRI. Keep in mind I’m extremely claustrophobic I HATE MRIS.

I’ve been learning how to truly meditate for the last few months, and have been regularly practicing meditation. I was dreading the MRI. Even with noise cancellation headphones, it’s loud af. And such a tight a space.

As I entered the machine, my upper body was smooshed very tight and held in place; I couldn’t move an inch, and I could feel by breath bouncing back on my face, the top was so near my head. I decided to keep my eyes closed the whole time for obvious reasons.

As the machine was turned on, I felt a slight panic attack setting it. But then I figured if ever there was an opportunity to meditate, it would be now.

And hons, it WORKED. I used the techniques and to my GREAT suprise, they worked. They worked SO a well that I very nearly fell asleep in the dern thing! Loudness and tight space notwithstanding. They didn’t even give me a Valium to get thru the test as they usually do. I checked out while the MRI was going.. I went to my happy places in my mind. I floated in space. I reminded myself that I was safe, and that I was getting plenty of air to breathe and was safe. And then I transcended for the first time. My mind – and thus energy – was at Frog Holler in the hot tub. It was in Myrtle Beach with my girls. It was in my husband’s arms. And that’s where I became super sleepy and relaxed.

I have never had meditation actually work using this practical application. For 40 minutes, I was at total peace, my mind visiting all my happy places. IT ACTUALLY WORKED! For the 1st time!

I’m really happy about that! I want to live a transcendent life; one where I am not so reactionary and high strung. The more I practice meditation, the easier it is to “check out” in my mind and experience peace.

Between my anxiety and claustrophobia and ADD / OCD tendencies, I never really believed it would work. Thought it was gooey.

But it DOES! It DOES work!

I’m so grateful. This experience could have been so much worse!