Authentic Forgiveness

forgiveness

When we can recognize ourselves in others and we can accept that all of creation is connected, we learn the meaning of authentic forgiveness.

Authentic forgiveness is the ability to let go of grievances; criticism, objections, judgements, guilt, blame – and turn those grievances into acceptance.

Accepting that life is sometimes unfair. Accepting that most people are not going to fall under our idea of ‘perfect’. Accepting that everyone is perfectly who they are. Accepting every mistake (yes, even the big ones!) as an opportunity for correction, an opportunity to learn, an opportunity for growth.  Accepting that what might be right for you is not necessarily what is right for the next person. Accepting that things are rarely as they seem. Accepting that what may seem like an injustice may actually come to be a blessing. And finally, accepting that God’s plan for you may be different than what you had planned yourself.

Ego plays a dark role in all our lives. It’s that annoying little voice inside that tells us we are inadequate, that we need to prove ourselves to everyone around us, making us believe that we are somehow better or that we don’t quite measure up to others, leaving us questioning whether we are failures or too good for our own good. Ego’s will is to keep us feeling separate and alone. Ego is our greatest deceiver.

The truth is that we are all sharing this experience together. We all fight the same battles, the only difference is in how our problems and challenges present themselves and how we react to them. Consider this for a moment: All problems stem from separation.

If this is true, authentic forgiveness / connection is the answer to every problem. When authentic forgiveness is achieved all that is left is absolute love and acceptance for all that is.

We will do anything to protect and care for those we feel completely connected to.We will make time for them. We will smile and acknowledge them. We will make sure they are fed, clothed, and loved. We will swallow our pride, let go of our ego and apologize when necessary. We will allow them to make mistakes, even if sometimes we are hurt in the process. When we feel connected, when we let go of judgments, blame, and grievances, we accept. We accept every person. We accept each moment. We accept our circumstances. We love ourselves enough to learn from every person, each circumstance and make change when necessary.

In a world of connection and absolute forgiveness, no one is left behind. Everyone is cared for, fed, and provided for. Everyone is loved and accepted exactly as they are.

All blessings and miracles in the world are visible from this place of absolute truth.

May your day be filled with love and miracles!

 

Finding the Gifts in Juvenile Arthritis

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Juvenile Arthritis is a pain in the ass joints. My son CJ was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis when he was 9 years old. The diagnosis took my husband and I by surprise though it shouldn’t have…Arthritis is a prominent disease in both our families. The thing is, when we think of Arthritis we tend to think of it as exclusive to adults. People don’t talk much about Arthritis affecting our children. CJ complained a lot about pain. Mostly when he was asked to do something like take out the garbage (!!) We thought he suffered from a case of laziness. But it was natural for him  to complain only when he was asked to do something…when his joints caused him discomfort, he would sit down with his legs up and watch TV or play video games to give his legs a rest. Otherwise he was out climbing trees, riding his bike, jumping on the trampoline, or getting his chores done. The Doctors believe the pain had probably been there since birth, so the pain he felt was “normal” for him.  He never questioned it. He knew that when he was sore, he was tired and it helped to rest and so that’s exactly what he did, naturally. We only ever really needed to ask him to do something when he was ‘having a lazy day’ on the couch.

CJ had been training in Taekwondo since he was 7 years old – 2 years before his diagnosis. He loved it. He was determined that one day he would earn his Black Belt. Although the Arthritis did rear it’s ugly head a few times during practices and he missed his first tournament due to a flare up, he didn’t allow it to slow him down. He learned the true meaning of perseverance, and indomitable spirit.

CJ had always been thoughtful and compassionate of people and animals. Suffering the pain of Arthritis as the flare ups worsened actually made him even more so. He was driven and moved to “help people who couldn’t move their arms or their legs”. When we came across the Walk To Fight Arthritis, he was so determined to help that he took off down the road knocking on doors trying to raise funds. He ended up doing much more than that!

As people opened their doors to him, he shared with them his story which prompted many to share theirs as well. I will never forget the excitement in his voice as he threw open the door saying “Mom! I met more people who have Arthritis! I didn’t meet anyone my age with it, but lots of old people! And I raised a lot of money! Someone even gave me $20!” He raised $1800 that year and he only had 9 days to do it. People were so generous and CJ found a sense of connection with others in sharing his story.

Every year CJ sets a goal to beat last years donations. Last year he achieved that goal. CJ also sets a goal to keep moving toward his Black Belt.

In December 2013, CJ tested for his Black Belt. Part of the testing was to write an essay of his choosing. CJ’s wrote about Taekwondo and Arthritis. He wrote about the obstacles and the challenges he faced on his journey to becoming a Black Belt. He also wrote about the gifts that he has found in Arthritis – He knows who his true friends are. He has become more compassionate and caring toward others. He feels a sense of accomplishment contributing in the community. He has learned that by being himself and sharing his story, he has achieved what many adults do not; authenticity. He has learned to live by the tenets of Taekwondo in every day life; Courtesy, Integrity, Perseverance, Self-Control, and Indomitable Spirit.

On September 15th 2013, CJ was presented with The Ontario Youth Award for his efforts with The Arthritis Society. This is the first time this prestigious award has been presented to someone in the Ottawa area. On December 7th 2013, CJ earned his Black Belt and although it is considered a great honor to be tested by a Master in Taekwondo, the Master singled CJ out telling him the honor was HIS to have been a part of CJ’s journey in Taekwondo because he emanates the essence of Taekwondo in the Dojan as well as out in the community.

When life presents you with a challenge, learn from it, find the gift in it, and kick it’s  joint ass 🙂

If you are interested in helping CJ reach this years goal please visit his donation page here

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A Journey Within

A Journey WithinIt’s been so long since I’ve written, I forgot my WordPress password! If you’re reading this wondering where I’ve been, I took a break. A long break. I write when I feel inspired. When I feel I have a message to share. The messages come from a place deeper than my own heart. Through this blog, you have joined me on my spiritual journey. For the last while, I’ve been struggling to put into words what’s been going on within.

Normally easily excitable in good stress and in bad, I am now less excitable and filled with a quiet peace. It’s not always a happy peace, but it is a peace no less. Normally positive with a belief of “everyone is doing the best they can even when it seems wrong to others”, I find myself questioning these very beliefs. How is it that when I look around I see genuinely good people being hurt or misguided by people who don’t seem to be “doing the best they can” or even doing what they surely know to be right. I stopped reading. I stopped writing. I took a little hiatus from my social life. Even kept social media to a bare minimum. I needed to explore my beliefs listening only to the messages within my own heart. I haven’t yet decided whether this shift in thinking feels better or not, but it often somehow feels more real, like a truth.

I believe that positivity plays a key role in our perceptions, and that our perceptions shape our world. Our unique perceptions allow us to see our lives as a beautiful journey even through the challenges we inevitably face. Perceptions can also allow us to see our lives as one hot hopeless mess. It’s not about seeing the world through rose colored glasses, positivity simply helps us to see life through a more beautiful lens.

I believe that most people have good hearts and genuinely do the best they can with what they know. Even when it doesn’t make sense to the rest of the world. I call this being led by the light. People who live their lives being led by compassion, connectivity, and purpose. As there are people who are led by light, there are also those who are easily driven by darkness. People who are driven by vengeance, anger, and fear. I believe that as perception is a matter of choice, so is the manner in which we choose to be led. It is not a matter of being created this way or that. It is a choice we are given every single moment of every single day.  We choose whether the decisions we make allow us to be driven by darkness or led by light.

I’ve shed more tears than I care to share struggling to figure out why bad things happen to good people. Why life seems so unfair sometimes. I don’t have the answers, I likely never will. All I have is my own heart and the gift to make my own decisions. I choose to be led by the light. I choose to believe that when “bad” things happen, somewhere within it is a lesson we must learn. One that will help us along our journey somehow, someway, one day. I continue to believe that life is intricately organized chaos. The people we meet, the challenges we face, the places we end up, there is an explicit reason for all of it.

During my break from reading, writing, and socializing,  I also took an unexpected break from dreaming. This wasn’t a choice, I still can’t explain it. I’m not sure if it stems from a fear of success or failure after all that has transpired with my book. (For those of you who don’t know,  it is due to a series of unfortunate events that  I no longer have a publisher, I will not be compensated for any online sales, and all the money I put into being published is gone. If I wish to sell my book once my copies are gone, I will need to come up with another chunk of cash in order to find a new publisher. OUCH! it still hurts!) For now, and for the last while, I have been committed to each day rather than to my dreams of the future. It’s not nearly as exciting most of the time, but I must admit, it’s been surprising and I might be falling in love with it. I am open to opportunities that present themselves. I am taking on small projects that I wouldn’t have had time for while living in my dream bubble.

Thank you, readers for providing me with a space to express myself and thank you for being my silent partner on this journey of self discovery. It’s not always a beautiful journey with chirping birds, sunshine and songs, sometimes it’s more like pain. Sometimes, it’s somewhere right in the middle. Writing allows me to share a piece of my deepest self . It requires a raw vulnerability which pushes me just far enough outside my comfort zone to grow.  I wish I could take you inside my heart just once to feel what I feel when I reach out to you, and you reach back to me. I fully embrace your awesomeness 🙂

You may also enjoy My Faith Unveiled , Did God Overestimate Me, 10 Lessons I Learned From Debra Poneman

Shedding Light Into The Darkness

FreedomI think it’s safe to say that at least most of us suffer bouts of self-doubt and levels of depression from time to time and we all have our own ways of dealing with it when it hits. Some of us become angry and take it out on the world, some of us become withdrawn and hide from everyone in our lives. No matter who you are, no matter how you handle it, the truth is it sucks for all of us.

Depression, self-consciousness, whatever name you choose to give it, is the result of indecisiveness and lack of commitment caused by poor self-judgement. Think about it…every time you’ve found yourself in this downward spiral, you’ve doubted yourself. You’ve cut yourself short and beat yourself up in one way or another. Truth feels right, you feel bad because you are lying to yourself. And when you ‘speak’ to yourself this way, it becomes very hard to make decisions and / or commit to anything. Pay attention to this next time that dark cloud starts to hover. What is it you are telling yourself in your time of need?

It’s not your job to judge yourself. You were created with exact divine precision. You are impeccable, exquisite, and unique. You were created exactly as you are for good reason. You and you alone have the ability to carry out your Divine Plan. What you may perceive as your greatest fault, may in fact be your greatest gift. Consider this; It is those we called “bossy” in grade school who became the greatest managers and “the nicest girl in town” would probably make a mighty lousy choice for a lawyer. Every so-called flaw is a gift when you take the time to look at it in the right light. You truly are Divine. A perfect creation.

Life has a way of throwing some pretty nasty blows our way and even then, what we may perceive as a disaster may in fact be a gift. How many times have you had your heart broken and thought you would never be able to go on? When you look back years, or even months later, you find yourself thanking your lucky stars that relationship didn’t work out!

Whatever your purpose, whatever your destiny, there is a power greater than you working for your greater good. It is only through these eyes that you will see your perfection. It is only through this plan that you will see the flawless organization of the divine chaos that we call “Life”.

Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Forgiveness

Featuring artwork by The Heart Painter and Nicole Cote

Featuring artwork by The Heart Painter and Nicole Cote

Dearest Love,

Forgiveness is one of life’s most difficult lessons. Unfortunately, it also happens to be a lesson you will probably continue learning throughout your entire life.

I’ve struggled with this lesson for a long time. This is what I’ve learned about forgiveness; forgiveness isn’t about forgetting. It doesn’t even have to be about reconciling. Forgiveness is simply letting go of your hurt, your anger or your resentment toward another. Forgiveness sets you free.

Holding on to bitterness and resentment may eventually result in dis-ease. You owe it to yourself and those you love to forgive. Don’t get discouraged. This lesson takes a lot of practice. Once you get the hang of it, you will feel your soul smile. You have my word.

Keep in mind that sometimes the person you need to forgive is yourself.

You make my soul smile.

Love Mom xo

Tomorrow, June 26th 2013 is the official launch date for Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo, Anyone who orders the book that day from Amazon.com will also receive a list of downloadable gifts offered to you from transformational leaders Shawne Duperon, Teresa Degrosbois, Debra Poneman, Susan Heim, Shayla Logan, Temba Spirit, and Heather Cournoyer. For more information and a list of gifts offered, or to place your order please visit the Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo website.

Thank you so much for sharing in this journey with me. As readers, you are the reason that I continue to write. ❤ Love, Sandy

Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Dealing With Difficult People

Featuring artwork by Nicole Cote and The Heart Painter

Dear Angel,

Remember this: “Those who are the hardest to love are the ones who need it the most.” Dan Millman said that, not me.

Everyone on this earth has to deal with difficult people. When you are faced with this challenge, try to remember that every single human being wants the same three things; love, happiness, and a sense of purpose.

In every moment, every one of us does the best we can with the knowledge we have. Some people do things because they honestly don’t know any better. Sometimes it’s easy to give into greed, jealously, or selfishness.

Supporting and encouraging you from Heaven,

Love Mom xo

See also Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Life is an Obstacle Course, Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Embrace Your Uniqueness, Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – The First Letter, and The Making of a Book That Broke My Heart.

On June 26th, Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo will celebrate it’s official launch. Anyone who orders the book that day from Amazon.com will also receive a list of downloadable gifts offered to you from transformational leaders Shawne Duperon, Teresa Degrosbois, Debra Poneman, Susan Heim, Shayla Logan, Temba Spirit, and Heather Cournoyer.

In honor of this most exciting event, I will be sharing with you a letter from Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo every day from now until then. If what you read touches your heart, I encourage you to please share it with others ❤

Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Life is an Obstacle Course

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Artwork done my Nicole Cote and The Heart Painter

My Darling,

Life is an obstacle course. It is completely unpredictable and not always kind.

Obstacles and failures are necessary for our growth. Without them, we could never truly appreciate our achievements. Try to understand that every failure, every disaster, is simply a stepping stone to your ultimate achievements.

Watching over you always,

Love Mom xo

Be sure to check out Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – Embrace Your Uniqueness, Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo – The First Letter, and The Making of a Book That Broke My Heart.

On June 26th, Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo will celebrate it’s official launch. Anyone who orders the book that day from Amazon.com will also receive a list of downloadable gifts offered to you from transformational leaders Shawne Duperon, Teresa Degrosbois, Debra Poneman, Susan Heim, Shayla Logan, Temba Spirit, and Heather Cournoyer.

In honor of this most exciting event, I will be sharing with you a letter from Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo every day from now until then. If what you read touches your heart, I encourage you to please share it with others ❤

Dodging the Curve Balls

baseballSometimes life can throw some pretty significant curve balls. I wonder if the lesson in that is to drive home the truth of just how little control we really have.

We are the co-creators, the co-pilots of the lives we live. It’s our job to pay attention to our surroundings, learn the course we choose to take; know where we are and where we want to go, ensure that responsibilities are taken care of, and take action when we need to. And therein lies the question…

The pilot can change our course at any given moment without warning. When do we take action, and when do we let go? How do we tell the difference between an obstacle we need to push through, a challenge we must face, and a sure-fire sign that we need to stop and/or make a detour?

As I take a moment to stop to tune out the world around me and shut off the noise inside my head, leaving me to sit alone in silence, those are exactly the questions I ask within.

The message I receive is simple and clear, as it always is; Patience, learn to let go of the control you think you have, and trust that although you may have a plan, mine is greater.

 

 

 

Surrendering

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Father, I give You all my thoughts today. I would have none of mine. In place of them, give me Your Own. I give You all my acts as well, that I may do Your Will instead of seeking goals which cannot be obtained, and wasting time in vain imaginings. Today I come to You. I will step back and merely follow You. Be You the guide, and I the follower who questions not the wisdom of the Infinite, nor Love who’s tenderness I cannot comprehend, but which is yet Your perfect gift to me. ~ A Course In Miracles

Isn’t it beautiful?

Embrace Your Awesomeness!

You may also like My Faith Unveiled, Journey Through Miracles,  Did God Overestimate Me?

The Wall of Doubt

Every moment of every day, you decide what your future will look like. There is a voice inside your heart right now that is letting you know exactly what it wants. It may be a gentle whisper, it may be a relentless scream, but it’s there….listen…Can you hear it?

When you act on that little voice, everything in the world feels right. That is until you hit the Wall of Doubt. The Wall of Doubt is invisible to the eye and crippling to the soul. It is the only REAL obstacle you will face on your journey to fulfillment.

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The Wall of Doubt is the window to shattered dreams. There is no going around it, no avoiding it, no going over it, or under it. You must go through it.

Although The Wall of Doubt has many faces, it is nothing more than self-doubt manifested as misinterpreted discouragement in the words of others, misunderstood “signs” from above, and ill-perceived mistakes.

Let your mistakes be your motivation

As Chris and Janet Attwood said in The Passion Test “there are only three things holding you back; false beliefs, false concepts, and false ideas – which is really only one”. Make no mistake, the only one standing between you and success is YOU.

When you feel like the world is against you, consider this:

No matter what you do with your life, no matter what decisions you make, people will judge you. There’s no escaping it. Some will agree with your decisions, some will not. Some will celebrate your victories, some will not. Some will be sad when you are down, some will not. Succeed or fail, mistake or not, the fact is that it’s just not possible to please every one all the time. Try to please everyone and you are sure to fail 100% of the time. Why waste time worrying about the opinions of others? When you experience authentic joy, that joy will spill outside of you and onto every person in your life. Why not focus on that instead?

Remember This:

Things are rarely as they seem. When you find yourself in the midst of the judgement of others (especially from those you love), try to remember that although debilitating,  it may be coming from a place of love and protection. You can’t chase your dreams while living inside your comfort zone. When you step outside your comfort zone, you inevitably take those you love right outside of theirs. Of course they will kick up a fuss! Everyone’s irritable outside their zone, throw in the treat of worry for you and…well, now you’ve done it! When those you love come off as less than supportive, pay close attention. It’s likely not the lack of encouragement that is upsetting. More times than not it’s because the words we are hearing from them reflect the doubt we have in our own minds.

Stay true to that little voice inside your heart. Stand strong in face of doubt. Have faith and keep moving forward. Go ahead, Unleash your inner superstar!

You are a star!

Embrace Your Awesomeness!

It’s your turn! Share your thoughts!

If you’ve enjoyed this post you may also enjoy Step Into Your Power, 10 Lessons I Learned From Debra Poneman, Staying Positive In a Bad-Ass World, Unleash Your Inner Super Hero

Pamela Tourigny

Brand Management, Story Telling, Marketing

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The Juicing Nomads

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