Sunday, January 26, 2014

Chasing Sunsets

Tonight, on my way to an event, I was lucky enough to be driving at the time of a beautiful sunset.  For most of the drive west, I found myself chasing the sunset.  I took several deep breaths to take it all in.

I began to think how chasing a sunset is impossible.  And yet that is exactly what I was doing.  I got the sunset to last a little longer.  I smiled as I felt I was winning.

But really so many things we strive for can feel like the impossible and yet we keep chasing the sunset.

Well I say, "Good for us."  Hope is the greatest feeling.  As a parent, loving and teaching my children and watching them develop into great young people gives me hope.  Working with my peers and colleagues to create a better community gives me hope.  Sharing my life with my husband and friends gives me hope.

Hope is healing.  It sparks goodness, faith and connection.

I will continue to chase sunsets and I hope you do the same.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Spirituality Matters

Over the past month, I have had the opportunity to share in the joys of the b'nai  mitzvot of my daughter's friends.  My friends and I are in awe of the poise and maturity that our kids express with the community.  Today, my daughter read the Torah because just a couple months after her bat mitzvah she wanted to do more.  But something greater happened today.

It wasn't just that my daughter read Torah.  It was the spirit in which she read, the spirit in which my husband and I watched her, the spirit in which her friends showed up to share the morning with her, and the pride and joy she felt as soon as she was finished.  Spirituality matters.

Rabbi Kligfeld also spoke beautifully this morning about the meaning or spirituality of an action.  What is hidden can be revealed and a ritual can have deeper meaning when cloaked in spirituality/religion.  The tasks of a Friday night dinner can feel like a burden, but then prayer, family and the lighting of candles bring a deeper, more holy experience to those around the table.

Through meditation, I have found even the simplest of actions can be more meaningful.  Giving comfort to a friend, sharing a laugh with your partner, or doing a puzzle with your friends and family.  Lately, I have found connection with my friends and family in these simple moments.  My son and I are working on a new puzzle, my daughter and I are reading the same book, and my friends and I are spending some great hours learning together.

Spirituality matters.  I see it in my kids in a way that I strive for through my learning and prayer.  My daughter and her friends have an ease and a confidence in synagogue that I envy.  

Spirituality matters.  The days of the week are the same week after week and what we bring to each day is what makes it unique and special.  Whether it is the daily ritual of work, taking care of the kids or our weekend routine, looking deeper with the lens of spirituality has made a difference in my life.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Our Intention is in Our Name

During a recent meditation focusing on "Intention," I began to think about what I wanted for our family in 2014.  The following intention came to my mind and wrote it down as soon as I got home.   I've read a lot over the past few days about what others want for themselves and I thought I would share this.  It now hangs on the refrigerator door where our family sees it (or ignores it) every day.

THINK - What to say; what to do.

EXPRESS - Say what you need/want and use kind words.

SAFE - Our home is a safe place.  Feel free to be yourself.

SMILE - You will feel better; You will make others feel better.

EXCEL - Do your best; Be your best self; Learn new ways to achieve.

LOVE - Walk and talk with love; Feel loved because you are and give love.

This is our life to live and the words came from our name.  This is our intention for 2014.

Happy New Year!