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“To be near something beautiful or precious but to be unable to experience it is the subtlest possible form of torture.” ~Robert Johnson

Monthly Archive

 

July, 2017

Nature as Dance Teacher.

I always look forward to the outdoor service we do in the summertime.

 

 

I love this opportunity to pray, reflect, and sing together in our Unity nature park! Our birds seem to be particularly joyful this year and will definitely add their voices to our celebration.

 

 

For many of us, being outside is the best way to “have church.” Human-made temples can be breath-taking, but the spiritual lessons and experiences to be found in the Temple of Mother Nature are incomparable. Even in a backyard.

 
For one thing, Nature cannot be contained. Neither can She be controlled – despite all efforts to the contrary. She is always in movement. Even on a quiet day with seemingly no wind, if you watch closely, you can always find rogue leaves dancing in the trees. And when She decides she wants to let loose, there is no holding her back!

 
The earth is alive! Many people don’t realize that even soil is a living thing. When we pour all kinds of chemicals on it we are actually killing the soil (which we then try to revive with other chemicals).

 

I’ve been reflecting on the idea of what it might look like to see Mother Nature as a dance partner and to allow her to lead. I invite you to join me in further reflection at our ONE 10am service outside this Sunday.

 

Much love,
Peggy

 

“You are invited to cast your awful solemnity to the winds and join in the general dance.”   Thomas Merton

July, 2017

Life in the Slow Lane.

Breathe.

 

Remove the word “stress” from your vocabulary. Instead say, “I have all I need.”

 

Breathe.

 

Slow down.

 

David Kuntz in Moments in Between says, “The metaphors we use not only reflect the way we live, but create the way we live. If we call life a rat race, it will tend to become one.”

 

Breathe.

 

“The heart is like deep waters,” says a Tsonga proverb. So dive into the deep waters of your heart and connect to your inner self, your wholeness.

 

Breathe.

 

In the mystic deep, all is well.

 

 

Love,

Peggy

July, 2017

Magic Pennies.

In Simple Truths, Kent Nerburn states: “Giving is a miracle that can transform the heaviest of hearts… true giving is not an economic exchange; it is a generative act.”

The practice and power of generosity is recognized as transformative in every spiritual tradition. 

When we do a generous act we actually connect with an inner feeling of abundance—the feeling that we have enough to share. I have noticed an overwhelming sense of pure delight when I practice giving. 

And it’s not just an economic thing, as Nerburn mentions. Giving can encompass a million possibilities:  giving our time to listen to someone who just needs to talk, setting work aside for a moment when interrupted in order to be fully present to the situation, sending an extravagantly bigger-than-usual donation to a cause you believe in, leaving an anonymous bouquet of flowers for someone who’s struggling, telling people how truly beautiful they are. There are so many ways to give!

The theme on Sunday is generosity. I invite you to reflect on the ways that giving is like a “magic penny” in your life (the more you give the more you receive…).

In Gratitude,


Peggy

Peggy Christiansen is the Spiritual Leader at Unity of Fort Collins. She has over 25 years of ministry experience working with diverse populations, a M.Div. from San Francisco Theological Seminary, and a special interest in helping people find and/or develop their unique spiritual paths. Listen to podcasts of her Sunday talks.

July, 2017

Knowing in One’s Heart.

 

Virginia Febinger is telling a story for the children on Sunday that is about truth-telling. The hero is someone who doesn’t put on any masks or pretend to know things he doesn’t. He has the courage to stand in his truth, which makes him look like a failure. But because of his honesty he is the one who is rewarded in the end.

 

I will be exploring the quality and practice of honesty this week. If we are to grow in this life and in our spiritual journey, we have to be willing to be honest and authentic. Spiritual authors today often use the word “awareness.” The first step in learning anything is to become aware of what we don’t know or what we are doing that isn’t working.

 

It feels like honesty and integrity and conscience are things that are undervalued in our culture; instead “looking good” is the goal. Being a “winner.”  Being “the greatest” whatever. Brand advertising gives us the message that we can somehow buy our way to strong character and good values.  But the truth is found in a quiet place that is much deeper than any externally-driven messages.

 

Jean Grasso Fitzpatrick says that the ancient Hebrew description of “conscience” is the equivalent of “knowing in one’s heart.” We get there by being honest. Above all, with ourselves!

 

Much love,
Peggy

 

A quote to ponder:  “The words that interest me more than the word God are authenticity, honesty, integrity, transformation and love. These come first and God comes later, much later.”  Alan Jones, Reimagining Christianity

 

 

 

 

Peggy Christiansen is the Spiritual Leader at Unity of Fort Collins. She has over 25 years of ministry experience working with diverse populations, a M.Div. from San Francisco Theological Seminary, and a special interest in helping people find and/or develop their unique spiritual paths. Listen to podcasts of her Sunday talks.