Dear Spiritual Family,
One of my favorite comics showed Snoopy getting dog food for his Thanksgiving dinner. He was aware that the family inside the house is enjoying turkey and all the trimmings. He meditates and talks to himself: “How is that? Everybody is eating turkey today, and because I am a dog, I get dog food!” He trots away, positions himself on top of his doghouse and concluded with a feeling of deep gratitude, “It could have been worse. I could have been born a turkey.”
In the last nine months, I am sure many of us have said to ourselves: “It could be worse”. In the years to come, when we look back on this time of Pandemic, I believe we will say over and over...”It could have been worse, but we did everything we could to take care of each other”. I suspect many will be saying it next week as we spend this normally bustling, opulent, noisy, family and friends-filled holiday in the isolation of our homes or in tiny family “bubbles”. But we sacrifice so that we can be together next year. And together we shall be! I believe it with my heart filled with so much love for each of you.
Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. Memories of my childhood are forever linked with the colors, sounds, smells and warm feelings of that special day. It has always been a time to “count our blessings” as well as an opportunity to put our values and priorities into high perspective. There is no human emotion, with the possible exception of love, that brings as many benefits, tangible and intangible, as the spirit of thanksgiving.
To find out more about these benefits, I invite you and your family to our Thanksgiving Eve Zoom Service, beginning at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday night, Nov. 25. We will be together for an hour of meditation and reflection, with time in breakout rooms with our amazing Practitioners for personal discussion and prayer. Please grab a cup of hot chocolate and join us at 6:30 pm on Thanksgiving Eve. (it’s easy, see the article below!)
Thanksgiving reminds us of the freedom-seeking Pilgrims, who set their sails for unknown lands, and whose courage and vision carved a path to a new world. In spite of all their difficulties and uncertainty, they continually gave thanks. Like the pilgrims’ long, hard voyage, these long months of the Pandemic have been difficult for all of us. And the next few months are predicted to bring even greater challenges. No matter whatever temporary challenges might appear...we will give thanks in all things! Through it all, with gratitude in our hearts for our many blessings, I know we can make it through...together.
As I look back over this difficult year, I sense a deepening of our spiritual awareness as a community. I am thankful that Divine Consciousness is manifesting as growth in the life of our beloved Church and in our individual lives. This growth looks much different than in past years. Instead of people filling the chairs, we are developing a growing and vibrant “virtual” community. In this Thanksgiving season, we remember that Church is more than a building. It is a consciousness of community, a spiritual family, a human connection of love, an organic, out-reaching and fluid organization of like-minded people who have come together to create a world that works for all people. Perhaps one of the keys to community, in this hyper-connected yet isolated world we sometimes find ourselves, is that we keep at it. And the CSLBoise will continue to “keep at it” because we ARE community.
In this time of Thanksgiving, it is important to me to say thank you to the members and friends of the Center for Spiritual Living, Boise for all the good that is expressing because of you. Because of YOUR love, YOUR prayers, YOUR enthusiastic support, this church continues to grow and reach out, becoming a greater power for good in the lives of its members and friends, as well as the community which it serves.
I give thanks for each of you every day, and I live in gratitude for having the honor of being your minister. Thank you for being a part of my life. You are truly a blessing! I sincerely hope you can feel my love and deep appreciation for each of you, not just on this day. . .but every day.
On behalf of myself, the Leadership Team and all departments of our church, I express to you and yours our love and blessings.
May your Thanksgiving be blessed in every way!
Rev. Jackie Holland