Archive for the ‘Amy Hitt’ Category

God’s Needs

December 22, 2005

Al is out of town, so he offered his blog day to me. I would like to thank him and say that the views I express today are not necessarily his views:).

I went home a couple of weeks ago to see my family, and I attended church with them, which I enjoy, because I get to visit with a lot of dear friends I don’t see often. Both sermons I heard that Sunday by the preacher (who I am sure is a wonderful man) were about his dissatisfaction with congregational attendance, contribution, public response, and attitude.

Now, I am guessing that he probably preaches this sermon once a year, because he feels obligated to do so. Churches like everything else, because of the way they are structured, can’t help but be worried about the bottom line. Bottom lines are filled with all kinds of quotas. I am not making light of the “Great Commission”—I am just trying to think about it from a different angle. An angle I decided to discuss with my mother soon after my visit. Again I say, the views I express today are not necessarily her views:).

I believe if a church is having trouble with congregational attendance, contribution, public response, and attitude, the church leaders should stop and say to themselves, “Obviously, we aren’t allowing enough of God’s presence and power into and through our church.”

I believe, God is omnipotent, all-powerful, of unlimited power. There is absolutely nothing we can give to God that God does not already have. God created us. We didn’t create God. God needs nothing from us.

We, on the other hand, need everything from God. God doesn’t need our attendance; we need God’s attendance. God doesn’t need our contribution; we need God’s contribution. God doesn’t need our public response; we need God’s public response. God doesn’t need our attitude; we need God’s attitude.

I believe, the message of the “Great Commission” is “Good News”, not a burden to be delivered to the masses about all of the things they must do for God, so that God will love them and deliver them from evil.

I believe, God wants us to tell people what God can do for them, not what they should do for God.

The message should be, “If you are struggling in life, give your struggles over to God in prayer, and God will help you.”

Not, “God realizes you are struggling in your life, but God still needs you to give, give, give to Him as well.”

We all do need to give, but God doesn’t need us to give to Him. He wants us to give to each other. How else do you think God will help you with your struggles when you pray to Him? He will use others to help you—the others who aren’t struggling as much as you currently, and then when you aren’t struggling so much, you can take your turn and help others, too.

From Care of the Soul by Thomas Moore:
“We read the story of Jesus in the river, whether we are Christian or not, and are inspired to make our own baptism. The Jordan is the archetype of our willingness to live fully, to have our own work and mission, and therefore to be blessed, as the Gospel story tells, by a higher father and a protecting spirit. The Renaissance artist Piero della Francesca painted this scene at the Jordan, showing Jesus standing straight in his full dignity, while in the background another man about to be baptized—any of us taking our turn—has his garment almost off, lifted over his head in a posture of exquisite ordinariness. It’s an inspiring image of the willingness to step courageously into the river of existence, instead of finding ways to remain safe, dry, and unaffected.”

Tattooed In The Cradle

September 29, 2005

Copyright 1998 Amy L Hitt

Born in the generation gap
Slapped before our first breath
Judged by where we chose to land
Right up to our death

Can’t see the forest at all
Through our family trees
Born into strengths and weaknesses
Judgments and beliefs

Tattooed in the cradle
Predestined by our birth
Tattooed in the cradle
But we decide our worth

Ain’t whether born with or learned
It ain’t who’s to blame
It’s how to erase the label
Not cover up the pain

Letting someone else live our lives
Is a form of dying
It’s like walking suicide
But we are worth reviving

Tattooed in the cradle
Predestined by our birth
Tattooed in the cradle
But we decide our worth

That tattoo is a blueprint
Of what we’re here to do
To unify the left and the right
Remember the true you

Tattooed in the cradle
Predestined by our birth
Tattooed in the cradle
But we decide our worth
Yes, we decide our worth

Only you can decide your worth

"I Could Have Planted Flowers!"

September 22, 2005

This may be a little off the message of health, but I think it applies—although I’m not sure what made me think of these events.

A couple of years ago an older friend of mine was in a nursing home for several months for rehabilitation. Whenever I would visit her, there were always the two same ladies sitting together in the lobby. One of the ladies would always wave at me like she thought she knew me, and they would both smile. I would smile and wave back.

One day when I went by—only one of the ladies was there. The waving lady was missing in action, so I went over and asked the other smiling lady where her friend was. She said, “Friend? I don’t have any friends.” So, I tried to explain to her that I was asking about the ladies who always sat next to her—to which she replied, “I could have planted flowers!”

Well, I realized her elevator didn’t reach all of her floors, but I walked away wondering what she meant. She obviously felt regret. Maybe if she had planted some flowers or some seeds she would have had some friends or would have realized that she did have a friend who sat by her everyday.

Another similar experience was a conversation I had with another older lady about why she didn’t want to plant flowers in her front yard. She said, “Well, people who walk by will just steal them.” I asked her if she meant that they would pick them. She said, “Yes, steal them.” She had a better elevator, but she was still skipping some floors as well.

As the leaves are beginning to fall off of the trees, I vow to plant some flowers next spring and hope someone steals them.

“There are moments in our lives, there are moments in a day, when we seem to see beyond the usual. Such are the moments of our greatest happiness. Such are the moments of our greatest wisdom. If one could but recall his vision by some sort of sign. It was in this hope that the arts were invented. Sign-posts on the way to what may be. Sign-posts toward greater knowledge.” Robert Henri from The Art Spirit.

Happy Birthday, Al!

September 15, 2005

Tomorrow is Al’s birthday, so in the midst of congratulating him on his heroic efforts at home concerning the hurricane relief, I would like to wish him a Happy Birthday! I for one am extremely glad he and his family are still around to enjoy it.

Tomorrow is also my birthday, and I say that not to get birthday wishes, but to complain about how old I feel. I guess, I must be grieving this birthday for some reason, because I have had a head cold all week. It is almost so bad I can’t even enjoy my birthday rituals. Although, I am also glad that I am still around to enjoy them.

Age—it gets you in the end no matter how old you are.

I thought I would just take a moment today to tell you about a book I heard about on “Oprah” called, You The Owners Manual—And Insider’s Guide to the Body That Will Make You Healthier and Younger. It was written by one of my favorite famous doctors, Mehmet Oz, MD (and also by Michael Roizen, MD).

Dr. Oz was also down in New Orleans helping save people and babies right after the hurricane hit. He said he had seen a lot of death in his day, but that nothing compared to the horrors he saw down there. It changed him.

Tragedies do change us. We almost always wait for a tragedy to strike before we open up to change. I guess, that is just the way of life.

But as far as our health goes, let’s all make a pack to begin changing today, before some illness makes us change. Check out a copy of Dr. Oz’s book or whatever book you are drawn to and just take one step towards becoming healthier.

I plan to take my step towards health right after I get over this head cold:). Take care.

I’m sorry that I haven’t written the past couple o…

September 8, 2005

I’m sorry that I haven’t written the past couple of weeks. I promise to get back on track next week. Thank you.

I don’t really know what to say today–except my p…

September 1, 2005

I don’t really know what to say today–except my prayers. God bless.

Who Cares?!

August 25, 2005

In the book Spontaneous Healing, Dr. Andrew Weil states, “More than negative feelings, apathy may be the major emotional obstacle to spontaneous healing.” He goes on to discuss our cultural epidemic—depression. “I experience depression as a state of high potential energy, wound up and turned inward on itself. If that energy can be accessed and moved it can be a catalyst for spontaneous healing.”

I bet that you know someone who is taking an antidepressant—maybe even you, yourself, are on a Prozac type drug. Question is—was it prescribed by a psychiatrist or simply by your gynecologist?

Granted there are people who need mood-altering drugs, but I wonder if our medical professionals aren’t just a little out of control when it comes to the way they handle people’s so called “depression.”

I have to agree with Dr. Weil who said, “…I worry about such enthusiasm for drugs that damp down passion, because I see intensity of feeling as a key to activating the healing system.”

Maybe it isn’t negative emotions that make you ill as much as it is the suppression of negative emotions, and I fear antidepressants lead to more and more suppression in general.

Lose apathy—gain passion. I applaud the “life purpose” movement.

I had the opportunity to meet a convicted murder in a Nashville prison last year. I was just visiting, thank goodness, but the prisoner I met, John, had been there for 30 years. He may never get out before he dies.

John has seen all types of criminals come and go, and he has determined that the most important and sometimes hardest thing a person can do is find their purpose. He is smart enough to know that purpose always has something to do with helping people. He said, “When you get out of self, you can move along in life.”

I have bouts with depression myself, and the only cure for me is to do like John said and “get out of self,” and I thank God, I didn’t have to sit in a 10’x10’ cell to learn that wisdom.

The little rooms in monasteries are also called cells. Our cells are what make up our bodies. Healthy cells make for a healthy person.

As a friend pointed out to me, cells eat, breathe, and eliminate. I’ve got the eating part down, but sometimes I forget to breathe, and from the looks of the stack of old boxes in the corner of my bedroom—elimination is a real issue as well.

So, as I ramble…it was something about apathy, depression, suppression, passion, and getting out of self. And, don’t forget “passion” means “to suffer.”

“But the truly wise, Arjuna, who dive deep into themselves, fearless one-pointed, know me as the inexhaustible source. Always chanting my praise, steadfast in their devotion, they make their lives an unending hymn to my endless love.” Bhagavad Gita (Stephen Mitchell)

I’m Stressed!

August 18, 2005

Seems like I never write about what I think I’m going to write about. Oh, well, for once I’m spontaneous!

Experiences of this past couple of weeks have helped me realize what stress feels like to me and what affects it has on my body. So, I want to take a little time to talk about stress.

The word “stress” is something I think all would agree can have a negative affect on your health. Even if people don’t agree that negative thinking and negative emotions can have negative affects on your health—pretty much everyone has accepted the unhealthiness of “stress.”

But, what is stress? And what causes it?

Stress, whatever it is, makes me feel very tense—like I am a tight ball of nerves. I get irritable and overwhelmed, and it seems to accompany being nervous and worried. Well, sure, I snuck in some negative emotions in my description of stress. Maybe, your feelings are completely different.

But, what is stress? It usually happens to me when I feel like I don’t have enough of something—like time or money, etc.—especially time. Deadlines are stressful—not meeting deadlines is even more stressful.

I also get stressed when things don’t work—my email or my computer for instance! Being around chaos and chaotic people is stressful to me, too, because I ultimately like my environment to be harmonious.

Maybe stress for me is a situation where things just don’t go my way. And, when things don’t go my way, I stress myself out. Yes, I do it to myself. How do I do it? Something happens. Things go wrong. Things don’t go as I planned. I’m behind in more ways than one. If I reacted to that scenario in a positive way, I would say to myself, “Just relax. God works in mysterious ways.” But usually, my reaction is, “I’m so stupid! What was I thinking! I can’t do this!” And, I tense up and get upset. There you go—I snuck some negative thinking in my description as well.

I read a lot. I try to read all different types of books by all different types of people. My philosophy is whether I agree with everyone else or not it gives me a wider perspective.

The book True Prosperity by Yehuda Berg states, “Stress is the collision between what you are and what you could be; it’s a wave that rolls through your life. The tension…between potential and actuality is stress. …It is not stress that kills; it is our reaction to it. …So the idea is not to turn stress away, but to let it in. If we want to know what’s holding us back, we must search for the darkness, because only through the darkness will you find the light. And that is what stress does: It finds the darkness, and right behind it, we find the light.”

Connecting and Disconnecting

August 11, 2005

(I apologize that I didn’t have time to write today. The following fits into what we have been talking about. It is an excerpt from an article written by a friend of mine.)

By Shannan S. Taylor

If we simply stated our case, expressed our feelings and realized that it takes two to make a happy home and relationship, we would be taking responsibility for our part of the success or demise of our relationship. We have a right and duty to express ourselves in order to be happy and healthy for the good of both partners and the relationship.

If we stated our case, our feelings and reasoning behind our discomfort and confusion regarding our impending decisions instead of trying to blame the other person for our own inability to relate, thus making them the “bad one” and us the “one done wrong”, then we would walk away with some sense of self-respect and a greater understanding of who we are and where our boundaries lie in the big picture of our lives.

Our personal power would remain intact if we walked away by taking responsibility for our decisions, regardless of what material losses ensued. If we knew and accepted ourselves with our weaknesses and faults unfolding in full disclosure before ourselves and others, we would feel the power surge of who we truly are and bring into alignment our outer and inner worlds and values. Therefore we would be able to move forward with a greater knowledge of what we need to be fulfilled and in the joy of knowing that we, alone, love ourselves for all that we are and that love is truly enough.

We are equal partners and equally at fault if communication breaks down. Yet, if we admit fault, we cannot seek a saintly position among martyrs. In walking away as friends in understanding that all things have a life span, which may not coordinate with the lifespan of human nature, human expectancy, and spiritual growth, we take responsibility for our part in a relationship. When the life span of a relationship is over, when the lesson we came together to learn is completed, then our relationship must change or end and we must move forward.

We are here on earth to learn and grow spiritually. We are here to learn about ourselves though our relationships with others and our environment. We are here to learn to love unconditionally. Radical acceptance of unconditional love is the only way to evolve.

It is our divine purpose to learn to love ourselves through others. To accept others and love them as we do ourselves. The problem lies in the fact that we cannot love ourselves. We hit the wall each time we try, but don’t know why. We treat people how we treat ourselves, but not like we would like to be treated, we treat them how we actually treat ourselves. It is a harsh affair full of heat that no one can withstand for long so we seek solace in the comfort of escapisms. Then we live in our own hell of discontent with the world as our mirror. Learning to love and accept ourselves is our hardest task in this life. Our defenses and denials assure the protection of our ego and the growth of our fears. We will not grow or find peace until those walls come down. It is as simple as that.

We cannot get to kindness unless we re-discover our core, which has never changed and never will change, for it is there that the eyes of a child remain as pure as newly fallen snow. It is there where we find love enough to move through the battles of life with ease. It is our inner child who is our strength and guiding light through the storms of life. It is our inner child who is our compass to a life our adult has feared to live. An unlived life is our deepest grievance, our deepest wound, and our deepest dis-ease.

We cannot find kindness and unconditional love for ourselves so easily because we cannot acknowledge our own divinity and self worth. We cannot find our love for anything when we cannot fully accept ourselves, love ourselves, honor ourselves and speak our truth freely. Until we are able to speak truthfully and freely, we will never be able to come into a true partnership with our mate, our God, or ourselves.

Dialogue

August 4, 2005

Well, this monologue is rapidly becoming a dialogue, and that is very exciting to me. Thanks to all of you for your wonderful and insightful comments. I’m going to skip what I was planning to talk about today, so that I can reply.

Last week, I was talking about positive thinking—about how our thoughts affect our health. In the discussion, I mentioned the possibility that some people might be called to illness to teach their caregivers life lessons. Annie made me realize what I should have said was that maybe some people are called to illness to teach themselves life lessons—what the caregivers learn from the experience is just an added bonus. Although, I do believe there are angels among us—children for instance. I have absolutely no answers there. I have no clue about those who are born ill or mentally handicap.

I actually just threw the “being called to illness” comment out there last week, because I had read it somewhere, and I was trying to be fair in my laying out of the possible options of why people get sick. My jury is still out on that one, too.

I’ve been thinking this week about Kristin and her illness. I don’t choose to believe we are victims in this life. I believe God wants us to be well and has given us all the resources we need to achieve it—including prayer. I just don’t know if I believe that we always use prayer in the correct manner. I wonder sometimes if God would rather we would ask Him probing questions instead of simply asking Him to intervene. Maybe He would prefer questions like, what can I do to heal myself, or what can I do to help my friend heal herself. Whatever means we use to heal ourselves, it all comes from God anyway. We aren’t taking credit, we are simply taking responsibility. We then aren’t approaching life as victims. We are instead using “the force” God has given us in a positive way.

I’m not trying to imply that there aren’t times when I am on my knees begging God to take over. I’m just not sure He wants to take over. I think there is a good chance He made me, so that I could learn through Him to stand up, take my mat, and walk.

I was watching ABC’s “Brat Camp” last night. The instructors teach the teens survival skills to raise their self-esteem. They teach them. They will not do it for them. Doing it for them leads to an unhealthy dependence—a vegetable-like state so to speak. If that reasoning applies from a teacher/student perspective, which is a perspective God created, then maybe it also applies from a God/me perspective.

If we are God’s temple, and He said don’t destroy His temple, then I have to believe He has given us the power to save the temple ourselves—by simply not destroying it. So, if you eat right and exercise and don’t work too much, etc., and you are still sick, you have to ask, what is it I am doing to my body? You have to ask, do I have suppressed anger and pain that I need to let surface and deal with?

I would be curious to know about Kristin’s relationship with her father. In Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom, Dr. Christiane Northrup says, “In one study, 50 percent of patients with cervical cancer…had physically lost their fathers due to death or desertion during their early years.” She also said that “raging” emotions hit below the belt.

Dr. Northrup suggests that much can be done toward healing cervical cancer by following these steps:
1. Be a witness to the wound of the past. You can do this stage for Kristin, but it is more important that she acknowledges her own wound. If she can’t acknowledge it, she is in denial, and denial makes no room for healing.
2. Investigate how the would has affected her life. This is the stage where she realizes that her life has indeed been adversely affected by someone or something.
3. Release the power of the wound to control her life. This is the final stage. Forgiveness is now required, for both herself and others.

I believe, forgiveness is just a gift you give to yourself. It’s being able to say, “You did the best with what you had. It wasn’t enough for me, but it was the best you had to offer, because of your own traumas. I understand, accept it, and can let go of the pain and anger.”

Let’s all look for ways God has given us to help heal ourselves.

Moving on, I agree with Dr. Watson that it appears positive thinking isn’t enough, but I want to make sure it is understood that I’m not taking about positive thinking from a generic perspective. I believe in “fake it ‘til you make it,” but I do think some people simply pretend to be positive, and that it is only authenticity that makes a true difference in life. Let’s think about calling it “radical acceptance” instead. Terrible things do happen in life, and it is our ability to have a positive response that moves us along. I’m going to keep thinking about this.

Duane, I totally agree that being able to cry about your pain is probably the number one healing thing we can do for ourselves. I am practically a water spout! I will do more research on the subject, but I would assume what Dr. Hawkins was talking about on the scale was more like “pity.” I know that I often times turn to my pools of grief to wash myself in pity—simply as a distraction from healing—healing in the active moving forward sense.

Thanks again for your comments! Sorry this was so long.

“Healing episodes…come about when a radical shift takes place inside, removing fear and doubt at the same time as it removes the disease.” From Quantum Healing by Deepak Chopra, MD