Are You Feeling Cheerful Yet? (the trouble with holidays)

Are you excited that the holidays are coming—or do you dread this season? I am always surprised at how fast the holiday season sneaks up on me. The fact that the stores had their Christmas stuff out before Halloween was over certainly didn't help. But now that the holidays are truly around the corner, how do you feel? Are you excited, stressed, overwhelmed, depressed and anxious? All of the above? Just getting through the list of things to do before the holidays arrive would stress out the calmest person, so I am not surprised to see stressed and anxious faces around me as we shuffle through lines of people getting ready for the holidays. Yet, there is an even deeper trouble that comes wi

Goodbyes

Today, I lost a very dear friend. It was sudden and unexpected. He left behind his wife, stepson, and other close family members. He also left behind an uncountable number of friends and acquaintances that will forever be touched by his presence in their lives. The range of emotions that I am experiencing seems to be unending. I am not sad, for him, he passed, he is in the best possible place. A world that is greater than I can imagine. I am grieving the goodbye. The knowledge that he is not with us in the here and now. He lived life to its fullest, making sure to bring anyone he could along for the ride. He was a visionary, always ready with a “plan” for his visions. He was intellige

Beloved

During a recent class I shared the following Bible verse, James 1:19, “You must understand this, my beloved: let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger.” I was using it as a centering activity in the style of Lectio Davina. We slowly read the verse, then asked everyone to share what word, phrase or feeling stood out for each of them. Next we spent some time in silence pondering the verse and its meaning for us. This is an amazing way to get up close and personal with scripture. Whenever I hear scripture shared in this way, I always hear or feel something that I know was meant just for me and me alone. This time was no different. When I heard the verse read, “You must

Making Room in Your Heart

Blessed are those whose hearts are pure and uncluttered... When the seasons change, I tend to revisit my New Year’s Resolutions, usually to find that the resolutions having the highest priority have been left unresolved. Leaving me to wonder, why are these perceived necessary and important changes to my life so difficult for me to follow through? One of these changes at the top of my list is to deepen my relationship with God, more specifically, to be in relationship with God. The operative word describing the nature of my relationship with God is “in,” making my relationship with God personal. I would like to share a short story with you that I experienced a couple of weeks ago while on our

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