Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Course Note #205: Living a Thanks in Advance Life!

Happy Thanksgiving! 

Yes, there is Much to be Grateful for.

A few years ago while reading the biblical account of Jesus feeding five thousand people with a few loaves and fish, I was struck by the fact that he first gave thanks to God, and then, he proceeded to feed the people. Not only was there enough to feed them, but there were many basketfuls left over!
If I were in that situation it would probably go something like this: “Oh My God!  There are 5,000 hungry people here, and I have only 4 loaves and 4 fish! What do I do? God, can you help me out here?” 
Suddenly, loaves and fish rain down from the sky, enough to feed everyone. “Wow! Thank you!”
This is how most of us live our lives: Thanks-after-the-fact.  Coming from a consciousness of lack and need, we don’t trust that our needs will be met, and when they are, it seems like a gift from God. 
The biblical example, however, reveals how to live a Thanks-in-Advance life.  We have already been given all that we need to live a full, abundant and meaningful life.  You may not think that this is true if you currently have more bills than money, or covet something sparkly and new.  The truth is that we don’t know what would make us truly happy.  We can learn to live our lives with a consciousness of gratitude and trust, and then Life has a way of leading us to how we can best serve in the world, and supplying what we need to do so.   

There are two ways of looking at the world: Through the eyes of fear, anger and “there’s not enough!” or through the vision of appreciation, acceptance and trust.  We will see out there that which we feel within. If anger and fear encompass our thoughts, then we see a world that shows us many things to be angry about and fearful of.
The good news is that if trust and thanksgiving embrace our mind, we look upon a world that shows us many things to be grateful for. What would you see? The choice is yours.

Let’s apply this to needing a job. The mind filled with fear may tell you that you need a job for security and to pay your bills; or it may tell you that there are no jobs to be had.
How would a heart filled with Thanksgiving see it?  I am thankful that I have been given what I need to serve, may Love show me how I can be used today.  

Let Love Guide You.

To a certain degree, abundance and poverty have nothing to do with the numbers in your bank account, but have everything to do with thought. Thoughts of gratitude recognize inner riches and abundance, while thoughts of complaint and “I don’t have enough” are poverty.  Looking at the world through the eyes of Trust and Love changes the way we live – it opens the door to seeing what was there all along. 
Living a Thanks-in-Advance life is about remembering that as Love created you, you have everything, right now!

And so:
Look well to this day,
for it is life,
the very Best of Life!

In its brief course lie all
the realities and truth of existence,
the Joy of Growth,
the Splendor of Action,
the Glory of Power!

For yesterday is but a memory,
and tomorrow, only a vision
but Today well lived
makes every yesterday a memory of happiness,
and every tomorrow a vision of hope.

Look well therefore to this day.
                                                                     Ancient Sanskrit poem

On 11-19-09 I gave a 50 minute talk on this topic. In it, I cover much more than I have written here.  Enjoy!

Living a Thanks-in-Advance Life!
MP3 File