Friday, August 28, 2015

Gifts of Spirit

Numerous years ago I was a member of the Cookeville chapter of Toastmasters’ International.  For those who aren’t aware of this group, it’s a club that helps people to become confident public speakers and leaders.  I knew I wanted to become a motivational/inspirational speaker, but also knew I needed to gain confidence in my abilities.  Being a performer on stage or in movies and TV was a whole other ballgame than standing up in front of a group of people and giving a speech, and Toastmasters was a good start.

When I first started, I couldn’t give a talk without my hands shaking, therefore, I would hold my fingers together tightly so hopefully no one would notice.  A few months after joining, I began to gain some confidence and decided to participate in their speaking contests.  I was terrified, but I faced my fears and gave them a try.  The contests are set up where you start at your club level and as you win, you move up through the various levels at other venues.  After winning a contest at the club level, I was driving to Nashville to compete in the next level and was a nervous wreck.  I didn’t have a clue how I was going to make it through without my whole body shaking in terror. 

Desperate, I started asking Spirit for a sign, any sign, to let me know everything was going to be okay.  At that very moment, I just happened to look up in the sky and there was my sign.  The clouds had formed into perfect angel.  It only lasted a couple of seconds so if I hadn’t looked up at that very moment, I would have missed it.  It was then that I knew that no matter what happened, win or lose, I would be okay.  I decided that I was just going to do the best I could and leave the rest up to the Universe.  Surprisingly, I won!  Next stop was the District Level.  I was still terrified, but I remembered the message the sky angel gave me to just do the best I could and to release my attachments to the outcome. 

There were five or six competing in my category, all were men, and they were all great speakers.  I went in and did the best I could.  While waiting for the results, I was thinking I didn’t have a chance even though several of the men said they thought I had won.  The results were announced and I came in third!  I was just happy to have placed!  It was a great lesson!

Many of us have experienced receiving signs, messages, or experienced synchronicities in our lives.  Where they actually come from, I couldn’t say.  Some say God, the Universe, Spirit Guides, Angels, or wherever.  It doesn’t matter.  It’s just nice to receive them.

Many people have had other spiritual and mystical experiences.  Some of these may be seeing Spirits or Ghosts of our loved ones, visions, premonitions, etc.  There is nothing to fear in any of these.  They are all gifts given to us. 

When my one grandmother died (who was my soul mate), I was so devastated I couldn’t stop crying.  One night while lying in bed and sobbing, I saw some kind of white form come down from the ceiling and into my chest (heart).  I immediately knew it was my grandmother’s spirit and I felt such a sense of peace that I never cried afterwards because I knew she was with me.

Over the years, I have spoken with many people who have shared stories of their gifts with me and they never cease to amaze me.  There is so much more out there than we are aware and we should keep an open mind and be receptive to whatever gifts are given to us.  Jesus said that we could do everything he did and so much more! 

Please know that if you have any of these gifts, you are not alone and there is nothing wrong or evil with having them.  They are gifts of the Spirit and should be honored and appreciated.

Brian Weiss said, “Our rational mind often attempts to minimize or negate the mystical encounters.  We forget the power of our experiences.  We must embrace the reality of that event, which is a miracle.”  And Radhanath Swami stated, “The power that we have, the knowledge and influence that we have are beautiful gifts from God to be utilized to serve each other unconditionally.”

Published in the Cookeville Herald Citizen newspaper August 28, 2015.

1 comment:

Joy Scudder said...

Rev. Karen, thank you for sharing this. Your words are truly an inspiration when I need them most. The "signs" are there; we need only look. Blessings in all that you do.