Sunday, December 23, 2012

12/24/12-12/25/12—Shining Brighter

Today's Draw: Nativity (Death) from the Christmas Tarot by Corrine Kenner. Whether you believe in it from a religious standpoint or not, what does the story of Christ/Christmas mean to you? What does it inspire in you? How will the power of grace move through your life this week and in the coming year?

Today's Draw is more like "Two Days Draw" today, in that it covers Christmas Eve and Christmas. This card is traditionally called Death, but in this deck is used to commemorate the nativity. Spiritually speaking, every death or ending represents the beginning of something new, just as the birth of a child represents a new way of life for both the child and the parents. 

Another aspect of Jesus and the notion of physical death is that he was eluding death from the day he was born. Mary and Joseph kept him safe as a baby, fleeing from King Herod's soldiers who were out to kill him. But, as an adult, he eventually met death on the cross. This is really the story of all of us—we are all ultimately on an unavoidable collision course with death.

That being the case, one of the morals of the story of Jesus could be: "Life is limited. Do the most good." If you are judged at the end of your days here on earth, you won't be judged by how much money you earned, how young you look or what label is on your clothes. Ego concerns are part of the old way of life that ends when you "pass back over into the light" or go to heaven or whatever your beliefs hold. 

In fact, I personally don't even think you will be judged in the afterlife. I think you'll be met with the grace, understanding, compassion, forgiveness and overflowing love of the God energy that sent you here just so you *could* make all those mistakes and learn from them. 

But if you ARE judged, it will be on the good you do. The love you give. The compassion you offer. None of those things require money or any special tools. They're things you can give right here, right now, just by accessing the light within you...the light that never dims or dies, but is constantly being reborn brighter. Even the eternal within us has its own death and rebirth. 

The beautiful thing about this gift we're given—the gift of life—is that we get to create it and recreate it infinitely...throughout eternity, really. But we also get to do that even just in the short time we're here on earth. Where today we have a sharp edge, tomorrow we can smooth it into a gentle curve. Some would call that grace or the power of God moving through us. And some might also agree that's the gift of this season. 

There are many who read my blog to whom the story of Jesus is just a story, albeit one that, to one degree or another, is based on real-life events. I remember that I loved the idea of Santa Claus as a child so much that, at a fairly young age, I decided that what was real about him was the spirit he embodied and spread in the hearts of man. From that point on, I knew Santa existed, simply because his spirit existed in my heart. 

If you, like me, are not a Christian, Jesus can be the same way. Whether he was divine or just a man really doesn't matter. It's the essence of what he represents and brings to this season that's important. We'd be remiss to allow our personal beliefs to cloud what this season is all about...the eternal light within all of us that can be born, reborn, brightened and whitened to inspire others and do more good in this world. 

For many of us, the coming week or so will offer many opportunities for reflection. Consider using some of that time to ask yourself what aspects of your current life are ready to meet the end of their cycle and what new things can be born in their place. How can you smooth the sharp edges to do the most good in your life? And how can that light within you be reborn brighter?

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