I love when things that seem very separate seem to find a way to intertwine. This week I discovered "The Next Chapter" a group reading "The Joy Diet". The first chapter in The Joy Diet is Nothing. Doing nothing seems so simple, but I have found it to be really challenging. My mind wanders to what I should be doing at home, what work is waiting for me at the hospital, what I am going to wear to work tomorrow, and on and on...
At the same time, my church community is exploring what it means to have a daily spiritual practice. The pastor has a blog in which she is talking about this exploration. I have learned a lot from the messages at church. Jennifer (pastor) has talked about what keeps us from starting a daily spiritual practice. Our church believes that there is a big, infinite love that is available to anyone at anytime. That everyone deserves to feel this love regardless of who they are, what they have done, and what they believe. Jennifer talks about inviting this love into your life and allowing it to crack your heart open. She said that what keeps people from starting a daily spiritual practice is the fear that we are the one that will not feel the love, that we are the one that does not deserve the love. That this love and this grace is not available for us.
I know a lot about fear. I know very little about love and even less about grace. However, the message to start a daily practice is clear. It is hard to ignore something when it is coming at you from all sides. I find myself grateful for these messages. I don't know if I believe Pastor Jen that love and grace is available for me, but I am willing to reach for it. I am willing to have faith. To take a leap of faith.
Today in church, Jennifer talked about the 3 steps necessary to beginning a daily spiritual practice. Step 1 -- Make a plan. Step 2 -- Begin. Step 3 -- Persevere. She said that we need to get still, but have attention and intention to reach for love and grace. She asked that those of us who are ready to make a commitment to undertake a daily practice for the next 6 days. I committed to this. I committed to Jennifer and to myself. Now I am declaring this commitment to the world. I am going to sit still for 20 minutes everyday for the next 6 days. I plan to repeat a mantra to help quiet my mind. My mantra will be Reaching for Grace and Love. I also have a yoga DVD that has chanting and I may use that as well. Regardless of the tool I use, I am going to be still and have the intention to reach for love, to open myself to possibility, and to feel grace pour in.