Jennifer Llamas, Youth and Family Ministry Director
As Thanksgiving week is celebrated, our thoughts in Youth Ministry turn towards opening our eyes to the blessings that surround us and opening our hearts to the grace contained within each moment. 2020 is shining through as a true life lesson in the chaos that comes with growth and change, and the good news is that we have the ability to choose our thoughts, feelings, and reactions to all we encounter.
In all religions, whether creation theologies or not, there is a common binding thread that connects all of humanity. Furthermore, each culture defines family groups in various ways.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a Family as: 1 : a social group made up of parents and their children. 2 : a group of people who come from the same ancestor You resemble your mother’s side of the family. 3 : a group of people living together : household.
It would be fair to say that most people’s first instinct is to think of “family” as defined in numbers one or three above; however, the deeper truth may be contained in the second definition which allows us to embrace the interconnectedness of all people and of all life. As “children of God” (feel free to insert your favorite Creative Force here) we have a connection with everything in our universe touched by the power of creation. This year, as extended family groups make tough decisions to socially distance during the holiday season, it may serve us well to focus on the larger context of our connection with all that is, with all that time and space cannot separate. We find ourselves presented with the perfect opportunity to put our Unity Principles into play: to understand that there is only one presence in the world; that we are imbued with the spark of this divinity and co-create our experience, and through affirmative prayer, meditation, our thoughts, words, and deeds, we live the Truth we know.
As you forge a new holiday path this year in the days and weeks ahead, remember to take time to feel your feelings, to honor the sadness or empty spaces you may encounter, to be gentle with yourself and those around you, and to look beyond our only-human circumstances as we each embrace the deeper Truth of who we are. Our commUNITY is strengthened by your prayers, thoughts, deeds, and (virtual!) presence. We thrive and survive by knowing that we are not only connected by Source – regardless of distance – but that we are also sourced and empowered by our invisible yet invincible connection with one another. Blessings to you and yours. Remember you are deeply loved.
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