Ten years is coming up soon—a month and a few days away. I know the number is essentially arbitrary to the universe, but as the upcoming anniversary approaches, I can’t help but think and talk about it. On this equinox morning, I’m ready to expand the conversation a bit. I don’t think I’ll talk much more beyond this as the rest is personal.
Autumn is my favorite season. It is the season of gathering and harvest. When the light diminishes is when the lightworkers get busy. No one needs lightworkers when it is noon. It is when it is dark that bringing light is most needed.
I feel like this is autumnal appropriate.
Climbing the Fiery Mountain.
Looking back, the main thing I’ve noticed is how cyclical things are, like climbing a path cut around a mountain. Each pass around the trail has similar views with slightly different perspectives.
I think of that first blast of fiery, furious love—so intense that the first reaction is to clam up. But then, we get comfortable in it, let down our fear, and learn to walk in the fire. It’s like adjusting to the light from the dark. It takes a while to see, and even longer to feel comfortable. Like Daniel in the fiery furnace, we are tested by our trials. But if we have faith and courage, we can emerge stronger and more resilient.
Fire is a powerful force, but it can also be a tool for transformation. It can refine us and purify us, making us more like the gold of which we are made. In the same way, the fire of love can transform us. It can melt away our defenses and reveal our true selves. It can help us to become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving.
I am grateful for the fire of love that has burned in my life for the past ten years. It has made me a better person.
I hope that in the next ten years, I can continue to grow and learn in the fire of love. I want to become more like the Daniel, who trusted God even in the midst of the fiery furnace. I want to become more like the gold that God is and I am, refined and purified by the fire.
And most of all, I want to become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving. I want to be a force for good in the world, spreading the fire of love to everyone I meet.
The Good Shepherd; The Cat Lover.
Jesus, the Good Shepherd, showed compassion and love for humanity by his mortal life and death on the cross. He is a Master we can trust like a cat trusts its owner. He will always love us and care for us, no matter what. Most of us don’t herd sheep, but lots of us have cats. Imagine us as the cats and Jesus as the Cat Lover.
I am grateful for Jesus’ love and sacrifice. He has given me a new life and a new hope. He is the source of my strength and my courage.
I pray that in the next ten years, I can grow closer to Jesus and become more like him. I want to be a reflection of his love and compassion to the world.
I pray that the fire of love will continue to burn in my heart and in the hearts of all people. I pray that we will all become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving. And I pray that we will all come to know the love of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd.
Please do not get stuck on the names of Jesus or other spiritual figures. Instead, focus on what they represent—the universal force of love and compassion. We are all capable of experiencing this force, and it is what unites us all.
Do not try to judge God. We are incapable of fully understanding just how strong and strange his love is. Instead, trust in his love and allow it to transform you. The fire is fine. You can trust Him.
A Life of No Regrets — The Key.
If you focus on compassion and love, you will have a life of no regrets. You will be free from the burdens of anger, resentment, and judgment. You will be able to live each day with a clear heart and a open mind.
When you are compassionate, you see the world through the eyes of others. You understand their pain and their suffering. You are able to forgive them, even when they have wronged you.
When you are loving, you give to others without expecting anything in return. You are kind and generous, even to those who are unkind to you. Make the world a little less suck. Every day. Just a little bit less sucky.
Living a life of compassion and love is freeing. It frees you from the negative emotions that can hold you back. It allows you to live each day to the fullest and to experience the joy of life. It is as close to the way God lives as we can manage here.
I am grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow in compassion and love. I know that if I continue to focus on these qualities, I will have a life of no regrets.
I hope you will join me in living a life of compassion and love. It is the best way to live.
Doubting or Faithful?
Doubting Thomas is often portrayed in a negative light, but he was actually a man of great faith. He was so committed to the truth that he refused to believe in the resurrection of Jesus without evidence of the highest quality.
In John 20:24-29, Thomas tells the other disciples, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
A week later, Jesus appears to the disciples again, and this time Thomas is present. Jesus invites Thomas to touch his wounds and to believe. Thomas falls on his knees and worships Jesus, exclaiming, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus then says to Thomas, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Thomas’ story is a reminder that it is okay to doubt and to ask questions. We should not be afraid to demand evidence of the highest quality before we believe something. In fact, it is important to do so. Thomas wouldn’t have met Jesus otherwise.
However, we should also be open to the possibility that there are things that we cannot fully understand or explain. Thomas was blessed because he was willing to believe in Jesus, even though he didn’t have all the answers.
I think that doubting Thomas is a role model for us all. He shows us that it is possible to be both skeptical and faithful. He also shows us that it is important to seek out evidence of the highest quality, but that we should also be open to the possibility of things that we cannot fully explain.
Wrapping Up — No Fear.
In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul writes about the resurrection of Jesus Christ, calling it the “victory over sin and death.” He says that “the last enemy to be destroyed is death” (v. 26). Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope that we too will be resurrected to eternal life, free from sin and death.
John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God’s love for us is so great that he sent his Son to die for our sins. When we believe in Jesus, we are forgiven of our sins and given the gift of eternal life.
1 John 4:8 says, “God is love.” God’s love is the foundation of everything he does. He loves us unconditionally and forever.
Fear is the opposite of love. When we are afraid, we are not trusting in God’s love for us. But when we know that God loves us and that he has conquered death and sin, we can have perfect peace.
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”by