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Reflections on my Brother’s Transition

Reflections on my Brother’s Transition

 

 

02-15Pelican

 

On my parents’ pond, this very rare and extraordinary sighting of a white pelican occurred two days after John’s funeral. A creation whose symbolism reflects John’s character and likeness.

It’s been almost eight months since my younger brother transitioned to the place beyond the flesh. I don’t like to use the word death, because he isn’t dead to me, but his soul and the spirit it exudes lives on. The word “passing” is a close second to death, so the word “transition” best fits what I feel to be true of his state. Though, I can’t see him with my physical eyes, my soul feels the closeness of his spirit. It’s like he is in another dimension that sits right up next to this one; a dimension that our physical can’t touch, but our soul can engage.

So, I talk to him. I don’t shut down our connection as dead, but keep our connection alive in love and acceptance of how we are today. I tell him I love him. It seems I can’t tell him this enough even though I know he knows it. I tell him how I feel that I let him down in so many ways, yet the moment those thoughts arise I’m reminded of how I have an eternity to make it up to him. Though I feel this way, I sense his spirit has only love for me, and appreciates what I did give; knowing it was the best I could do at any given time; that is John. He is able to see into others.

Though I sense he feels the depth of my love, I still wish I loved him better while he was here. And through that desire, I’ve learned many lessons. Though I can see how I could have been a better sister, a better friend, I don’t possess any guilt. It’s not about guilt, but about learning from everything and growing. So, I desire, with great mercy and grace, to live in my increased awareness of all he has taught me and continues to teach me.

Though guilt may be an initial reaction to seeing the error of our ways, I’ve learned if I stay in guilt, it keeps me from growing while releasing guilt opens me to learning. Guilt confines me to a reality of a negative effect or outcome, versus growing from my experience and what it intended to give me, and living in that enhanced reality. Because of this, my reflections of John are teaching me a lot. I seek to live in the expanded awareness as I try to carry these lessons forward. I feel this honors him and his transition process.

Love never dies. I heard this over and over the week of his transition. To me, it means the connection between us can never end, wherever we are, because it is sown in an intention of pure love. Perhaps my actions weren’t reflective of the love I feel, but I realize that is part of the plight in this brief reality. A pure and true love is the energetic life force of eternity. It can’t die. If it dies, it was something else.

So our connection is alive and active. I sense his spirit. Through this interaction, I “see” him more clearly now. I see him in ways I didn’t when he was here. I wish I had this vision while he was here, but thankful to possess it now.

For me, continuing to interact with my brother is a blessing to him and me. It isn’t holding on to the past, but engaging him as he is now, and I’ve learned that being current is an essential part of this connection; otherwise I’m connecting to a lifeless image. It’s different in that it’s purely soul to soul, but the connection between us lives. I feel it’s important for him and me that I honor his journey as he moves on to the next stage. Yet, that doesn’t mean letting go of our relationship or connection. But it does mean that I emotionally let him move on to his next stage of his soulful journey by not wanting back the past. Growth, though erratic in going forwards and backwards, comes from a willingness to always go forwards.

For John, I sense that for him to feel our active connection is nurturing to him, because I honor his new place. Yes, I miss his presence. But, I want him to prosper and grow in his new environment; whatever that means. So my heart stays connected to him and supports him fully where he is. I think to strongly want back those who have gone through this transition has a negative pull on them. It certainly seems to have one on us. Perhaps if it is negative, then they don’t feel it. But either way, I feel it’s important to set them free in this way, yet continue to lovingly give our support, for their soul lives on.

When we have a pure love for someone we emotionally allow them to move forward. If we don’t, there is an unhealthy attachment in the relationship, which is something for us to work through.

Because of this understanding of our living connection, I’m exploring a new territory. I’m not only talking to him, but also learning to listen. If our souls are connected because love never dies, then perhaps it’s possible that I can not only sense him, but take it a step further and hear him.

With the Spirit of Truth, my soul is like a receiver that picks up a thought impression of his and I record it. I hear the essence of what he is sharing and write it in my words, if that makes sense. Therefore, I use my words to express his thoughts. From this soul connection I’ve experienced with the Spirit of Truth and the many confirmations of this interaction, I’m wondering if this dynamic can occur with John as well; for love never dies, thus the soul connection of that love.

Allowing myself to sense John’s presence has brought me to deeper levels of compassion, understanding, and an expanding awareness of the shades of love. So, will I be able to go to this next level? I feel compelled at times to do so, so I follow that prompting. I’m exploring this new connection with the caveat of always desiring to stay in the truth, yet always willing to learn.

Regardless, I hold him close. John transitioned, but his soul is very much alive to me. In a pure and true love, our connection remains intact whatever dimension we are in. I let him be free to be where he is. I honor his new form by relating to him as he is. I continue to love him, and with all I’ve learned, more so. I talk to him, I seek to attune to his spirit, and I honor his new life. Love never dies. I take the lessons I am learning from experiencing his life and transition and seek to live in them, which honors him, his life, and ultimately all.

 


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A Living Legacy of Loving Kindness

A Living Legacy of Loving Kindness

 

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This legacy is what my beloved younger brother left behind when he exited this physical realm 15 days ago on February 11, 2015.

Since his unexpected passing, though waves of great sadness roll over me, my heart continues to feel his love pouring into it. How can that be?

As the shock waves dissipate, I’m being blessed in seeing some beautiful reflections; aspects of the purpose and meaning of his life, the interwoven design of all things, the hearts of those whose care, prayers, and support provide ethereal arms to carry those who knew and love John through this time of transition, and the love and care that flows through our family.

John Michael is a very special soul. He is numbered among the precious souls who never lose the unconditional touch of love from childhood. They continue to give this special love all their lives as it expands into a love that exudes honor, loyalty, integrity, trustworthiness, mercy, good-will, honesty, kindness, gentleness, and courage. We feel loved, valued and special in their presence no matter who we are, for this love holds no prejudice. They are son-kissed souls who help us along our soul journey through the trials of this temporary sojourn. They serve a special role that is an exceedingly great gift to those who are blessed to dwell in their reflection. We often call them “our angels”. These souls, who give us a love that always lifts us up, are like refreshing springs along our earthbound pilgrimage. And for their love, they are greatly loved.

Several of my close friends have also been blessed with such a brother, and like me their brothers were un-expectantly taken in the youthfulness of life. Yet, the gifts of loving-kindness they gave during their shortened days continue to pour forth; for love never dies.

Throughout these 15 days, I have continually heard from within, “love never dies”. Love, with all of its characteristics, is the one aspect of this reality that never dies. It transcends space and time because it is the character of eternity and immortality. When a connection is made between two souls in a pure love, this connection remains intact even when one exits the physical realm. It is a connection that crosses all barriers. I learned this concept in theory, but now I’m experiencing it in my reality. My beloved brother is the first person who I’ve been close to that I’ve been separated from in what we call “death”. Yet, it’s only a physical separation, because the connection formed in our souls remains, and this teaches me that even “death” can’t destroy love. Thus love is what overcomes death.

Throughout the past couple of weeks, I’ve seen markings of a pattern and design pointing to a higher purpose for his early exit. Their interwoven nature reveal a much greater plan and purpose that we are all a part of. Being able to see this is an exceedingly great comfort to me. It’s incredible and I’m extremely grateful for the eyes to see. So though I feel sadness because of my deep love for John, its buffed by a continual expansion of a greater awareness that there is more to the story, for love never dies.

John = “Jehovah is a gracious giver”

Michael = “who is like God”

In so many ways John Michael fulfilled the meaning of his name. And in doing so he left a living legacy that continues to give.

John’s funeral “happened” to be upon Valentines Day, and how fitting because his life portrayed a brotherly love to those he knew. One may think I’m biased in my words, as I am an adoring sister, until you hear the stories and witness the impact his life had on others. His character shined brightly to those who knew him.

John subtlety deposited seeds of a pure love in the hearts of others. The stories and impact of his life upon others reveals this over and over. The seeds were experienced in the non-judgment, honor, and value they received from him. These were gifts to strengthen us along our soul journey through this trying place, a place that challenges and refines our own love. For me, it seems like the seed he gave me is blooming in a way it hasn’t before. It is opening up passage ways in which my love can flow that were once blocked. I’m seeing love’s reflections in new ways. Though my awareness also grows in seeing my lack of expressions of love, his love inspires me. He casts a beautiful reflection upon my soul that encourages me to never give up on love, for it is the essence of true life. This is his living legacy. It continues to give; for love never dies.

The other day as I reflected upon his life, I wish I had loved him better. But I was reminded by that still small voice from within that this life isn’t about living perfectly, for its impossible, but to learn about the perfection of love. But still I wish I expressed my love to him more.

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(I love this picture, to me it reveals the connectedness in our souls.)

John is a skilled horseman, marksman, and craftsman. He was a carpenter by trade. He lived this life in the purest of “religion”; to love others as you want to be loved. Though I don’t think he necessarily tried to live this, he just did, as one of a true love would. From the time he was a young child he possessed sensitivity to the souls of others that enabled him to “see” them and connect to them. He disdained conflict and sought peace and unity. He possessed a calm and peaceful demeanor until someone mistreated one he cared for. Even then he showed restraint when needed. He never forced his opinion or ways upon another. He protected and watched over those he loved. My life is peppered with stories about his protection overshadowing me. And he wove his special love into our family that connected and blessed us all.

John only wanted to see smiles and no tears. As my own tears flowed from my deep love for him these past weeks, I told him that I know he doesn’t like to see my cry, but I just love him so much. He understands. But he also taught me the balance of holding a cherished remembrance of one who is passed, and continuing to move forward because there are others who need your affections. He always possessed wisdom beyond his years, and I often told him he was more soulfully mature than the rest of us. He is a special soul; he is a son-kissed soul.

From the moment he was born, he was connected to me in a pure and sacred place in my heart. And from his childhood, I called him my angel, and I’ll continue to; for now he possess a freedom of spirit in which he can do and give far more than what he did when bound to a physical body. His soul journey continues on and how blessed are those souls he encounters. In his physical form he gave me a strength and comfort amongst the trials of life, and I know he will continue to do so for love never dies. But I so deeply miss those big ole hugs.

I love you so very much John.

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Governance by Fear vs. Love

Governance by Fear vs. Love

 

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

 

Immanuel came to give us of His spirit, a part of the Heavenly Father, to regenerate our minds, hearts, souls, spirits, and flesh in divine love. In this transformation, leading to new creations fashioned in His likeness, the Father’s spirit through love, not of fear, governs us.

Born into Fear

In being disconnected from the ways of divine love, fear has ruled us from our birth. We are taught at a very young age to act or not act in certain ways by fear; fear of punishment, being yelled at, spanked, intimidated, threatened, ignored, rejected, or neglected. We are taught to obey through fear by our families, employers, teachers, officials, spouses, religion, and other relationships.

Further, from our beginning, people treat us in non-loving ways; ways that induce harm thus fear; criticism, judgment, harsh treatment, oppression, abuse and so on. And how thankful we are for the kindness received amongst these. However, we spend the rest of our lives trying to avoid those treatments, thus living by fear. It directs our thoughts, words, actions, behaviors and choices.

Governance of Fear

Governance by fear creates a plethora of problems. Here are three. First, those being governed can never draw close to someone who uses authority by fear, which creates a ubiquitous fear in their lives. Fear creates distance, not closeness. It causes us to want to run from and not draw near to others. If someone desires love from us, presiding over us by fear doesn’t work. We can’t have a relationship of love on a foundation of fear. Fear divides.

Second, if the authoritative party desires love from us, a rule of fear doesn’t allow those following to truly act in love. If we are governed by fear, we make decisions to avoid the fear (criticism, judgment, punishment), thus we aren’t making decisions out of love. We may be more obedient to defined rules, but that doesn’t create new and abundant loving results, only self-preservation. A mindset of fear verses love creates two very different outcomes. A fear-based rule can’t create a love-based reality.

Third, fear gives birth to lies, deception, and hiding ourselves from others, because we fear the consequences. It’s very hard to be totally open and honest under a rule of fear. We want to cover-up our mistakes and that makes it hard to grow and learn from them. For the one to teach us the right way is the one we are trying to hide our mistakes from. Further, we can’t bear the disapproval housed in fear, so we hide ourselves as much as possible. Thus it makes it difficult to deal with our weaknesses and brokenness for our anxiety of those areas being exposed keeps them hidden and unhealed.

Being established on this framework, our fears dictate most of our actions to some degree. In fear of disapproval, being left out, made fun of, forgotten, unloved, and disrespected, we act very differently than if we didn’t fear these things. We all go great lengths to avoid our fears. We haven gotten so use to responding based on our fears we don’t recognize it. It is an undercurrent of our lives to such an extent that it shapes our personality.

A Change of Governance

A ruler of any type of authority can govern by fear or love. Obviously love is far superior for it manifests actions from the followers out of love and not fear, which produce far superior results. However, those under love’s reign have to understand and know love. Without understanding it, they can’t be governed by it. If there is a treasure chest in front of you, but you are blind and can’t see it, you won’t grab a hold of it. Fears are immensely prevalent, seen and known, and divine love is not, so people remain in their fears.

Because fear has been our foundation from our birth, we have to push through fear to seek to learn and know divine love. (Divine love is far different than the love we learn from the world, which is peppered with fears.) The path of understanding divine love isn’t an easy transition for fears go very deep into our subconscious, and are tied to lies and harmful experiences. But this is part of the renewal of our minds by the Spirit of Truth who sets us free so we can be a creation governed by love.

Freed from Fear

Once we intimately know divine love so that we begin to give and receive it, it starts to replace fear in our lives. Through this growing awareness of what is of love and what isn’t we start to become free from fear, and start to be governed by love. Fear is based on lies so it can’t stand in the face of truth. Love is truth, thus in knowing it, it prevails against the fears. Truth always defeats the lies for lies aren’t real and truth is.

Divine love is the fulfillment of all our desires. When we start to experience it, we are transformed by it into spirit-minded creations who think and act according to the ways of God. It becomes our sole desire. Thus, one foundation is replaced with another, and we start to walk in the spirit-mind governed by love and no longer the flesh-mind governed by fear.

New Covenant

The new covenant between our Creator, who is love, and us is a governance of love. Love is the supreme mindset of a creation. It’s one in which the creation will do amazing acts of goodness for others. It’s one in which the creation can always grow and expand into eternal life. It’s one in which the creation desires to become so deeply connected to it’s Creator because it’s drawn into the source of love.

Love seems weak and fear strong only because people have not known divine love. Fear has been the ruling entity in this world. Yet, love is far stronger, for once we taste it, all we want is to go deeper and more of it. We will turn from all that is contrary to the point of becoming willfully and fully governed by God Himself. There is nothing more powerful. The heavenly Father’s righteousness reign is one of love. It is in love that He will come to us to make us His dwelling place in the spirit.

May we be spirits who seek to operate by divine love within ourselves and with others. May all of creation be released from its bondage to fear.

Isaiah 14:3 It shall come to pass in the day the Lord gives you rest from your sorrow, and from your fear and the hard bondage in which you were made to serve,


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From Impossible to Possible

From Impossible to Possible to Fulfill

‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with ALL your mind, and with all your strength.’  This is the first commandment. “And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Mark 12:30-31

Simple law; yet impossible to fulfill … on our own.

Impossible Law

Somehow, we give a sigh of relief when we realize the only commandments God asks of us is these two above. They seem so simple. Yet these are completely impossible to fulfill on our own.

Foremost, we are limited beings in our understanding; and true love, which is acting in the very best manner for everyone in any given situation, can only come from an all-knowing being who knows all the interworkings of a situation and the ripple affects of every action.

Made Possible

The only way to truly love is to be all-knowing. Then, you know the perfect thought, word and act in every situation. We aren’t all-knowing, but have a Father who is, who is now bringing forth children who are apart of His wisdom, which comes from being all-knowing. So though we aren’t all-knowing, we can receive the wisdom from an all-knowing source. So in any situation though we aren’t all-knowing, we are a part of the One who is and have access to His wisdom. When we act in accordance to His wisdom, then all we do is done in perfect love. Because of the depth of connection He is creating between us and Him; His wisdom becomes our own, this is gaining the mind of Christ.

Receiving the Wisdom of God

Thoughts are always arising in our minds; either from within ourselves or received from the outside. Each time a new thought comes into our awareness there is a choice to make of how to respond to that thought. We can ignore it, put it away from later (ex: an errand to do later), analyze it, worry or obsess about it, or act on it.

What determines how we perceive an incoming thought, whether of ourselves or from the outside, is based on the framework of understanding we hold that entails all our beliefs about what is true and what isn’t. The more truth (versus lies) we have, the more we receive and understand each thought as we should and thus respond to it in a loving response. Truth is love.

When our frameworks of understanding, thus our perceptions, are being established in truth, then incoming thoughts are assessed by that truth we are gaining. For example, God has been teaching me the nature of true love. In that learning process, if I had the idea to give a gift to someone; His spirit causes me to reflect: Did that desire come out of true kindness or something else as an obligation, guilt, or hypocritical kindness,? This reflection is part of the learning process.

As we learn what makes up true love, those principles become our truths by which we naturally function. As for giving, we learn there is only one motive in which to give, out of loving kindness. All other motives create harmful ripple effects to the giver and receiver.  Thus, once we have this truth, then all thoughts are assessed by it. This process is part of us gaining the framework of truths that create loving responses. We learn love by what creates love and what doesn’t. As we learn each principle, they become our truth that we start to naturally act upon, our wisdom.

To truly learn love, we need the desire to be truly loving without hypocrisy, thus a pure motive of loving kindness. When we have this desire, God will lead us away from hypocrisy as He implants the truths we need to love in sincerity. Romans 12:9

As we seek to know the truth, then our heavenly Father starts crafting frameworks established in truth in our minds, which cause our perceptions to be in love. As we start to be connected to and a part of the source of love, loving kindness starts to govern us.

For those who have sought the true heavenly Father in spirit and truth, they are becoming united to His spirit. This is the return of Christ, the Kingdom of heaven coming within us, becoming a new creation, gaining the mind of Christ. Their mind is being crafted in and by His truth, thus they are becoming His truth and a part of His divine nature. When you live in His truth you become as He is. 1 John 3:2 His nature; peace, loving kindness, mercy, righteousness, justice, holiness, joy, power, mercy, forgiveness, compassionate, long suffering, and so on are the fruit of His truth played out in His wisdom in our lives. 1 Corin 2:16, 1 Corin 1:30 All these characteristics in summation equates to love.

When we start becoming a part of the true nature of love and desire it to increase in our lives; then all our choices are made in line with that end. We are always growing deeper into true loving kindness, thus all the aspects and ways of our heavenly Father. Matthew 5:48

When we seek for our truth to be established by God, the wisdom of God becomes a part of us. When we “look” at ourselves and see Christ in us and His nature becoming our nature, then we know we are a part of Him. John 13:35, John 14:23 When we act on His wisdom in us that is a part of us, we are fulfilling those two commandments as God wills and intends. John 15:10