This blog is intended to create a dialogue about learning to receive with grace and ease.

So much has been written about the importance of giving that we forget that in order to give,

someone has to be receiving.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Expecting to Receive

Catherine Ponder, Unity minister and prosperity guru, has often written it is natural and appropriate to expect to receive when we give. Because it is a process, two sides of the same coin so to speak, we simply cannot give without receiving. So while we don’t give just so we can receive, it is perfectly fine to expect to receive.

Recently I was reflecting on this and realized that expectation was an area I needed to work on. As I’ve expressed recently, financial prosperity has not freely flowed to me over the past several years, despite my doing all I knew to do as well as I knew how to do it. Because it’s been a struggle for me, I don’t have joyful anticipation of good flowing to me when I start a new endeavor. I need to change this.

One tool we can use to change our attitudes, beliefs, and feelings (or consciousness) is affirmations, positive, present tense statements. Here is a series of affirmations or an affirmative prayer I’ve written and begun using to shift my consciousness:

I expect to receive. Because I give, I expect to receive. Because God is good, I expect to receive. Seeing God’s abundance in all of creation, I expect to receive. Because the Universe is unlimited, I expect to receive. Because Jesus promised, I expect to receive. Remembering that God knows my every need, I expect to receive. Because it is the Father’s good pleasure to give me the kingdom, I expect to receive. As a child of God, I expect to receive. Because I have set the intention, I expect to receive. Because God is faithful, I expect to receive. As I stay in the flow, I expect to receive. Because I am grateful, I expect to receive. Because God loves me, I expect to receive. Knowing the Universe abhors a void, I expect to receive. Remembering all that I have received in the past, I expect to receive. Because I am prepared, I expect to receive. Because I cannot help but receive, I expect to receive. Because I have absolute faith in the goodness of God, I expect to receive. I joyfully, gratefully expect to receive. It is now a habit: I expect to receive.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Receiving Financial Prosperity

As I mentioned last time, financial prosperity has eluded me, despite doing all I could to bring it about. About the time I began tithing, I quit my full time job to do what I loved. At the time I was married to my daughters’ father and he had a job he loved. Now it was my turn. I began adjunct teaching at two local colleges, became a Weight Watchers leader, and started as a contract management consultant. For several years I juggled these jobs and eventually left Weight Watchers, became certified as a wellness consultant and lifestyle coach, and started my own wellness business. I continued management consulting, for a large firm and also on my own, and settled into teaching for just one college, Rio Salado. In 2007, I became a certified Jazzercise instructor and taught classes three times a week. Over the years, I took business and spiritual classes, completed a mentoring program, developed a website, and embraced Internet marketing. Still, my financial picture did not shift.

At the beginning of this year, I decided I’d had enough. My book, Worth Waiting For: Sane Sex for Singles, was published, but I had no time to promote it with all I had going on. I concluded that things were going to have to change, beginning with me, or I would go back to working full time for an employer. I made a commitment to write a book on receiving and began journaling every day. In March I gave up the good, my wonderful Sun City West Jazzercise classes, to make room for the greater. I began blogging, cleared up the piles that had accumulated on my desk, and started making new connections by attending networking groups again. Daily I asked Divine Intelligence, which always knows the way, for guidance.

About seven weeks ago I was inspired to write a new vision for my professional life and finances. It was clearer and bigger than I’d ever envisioned before. It would mean letting go of my old life and playing in a much larger arena. I have it posted in my home, carry it in my wallet, and read it every day, along with the Prayer of Jabez. I’ve decided that the reason prosperity did not materialize for me was because my true heart’s desire was to be in what Gay Hendricks calls my zone of genius. I need to make the Big Leap, even bigger than quitting my old job and starting a business. The business I’d started was in the same realm of where I already was, in my zones of competence and excellence. It was not a big enough stretch and did not “enlarge my territory” as Jabez put it. My new vision will do those things and more.

But if the money had come along the way, I doubt I’d be pursuing this vision right now. Stay with me as I live my vision, trusting that, “the moment one commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no one could have dreamt would have come their way.” (W. H. Murray)

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Many Forms of Prosperity

I began a new ten-week class by Mary Morrissey and Karen Joyce this week called Prosperity Plus…A New Way of Living. I’ve taken a number of prosperity classes before, but since I’m not as prosperous as I’d like to be and this is a “new” way, I decided to invest my time and energy. The class involves making the commitment to tithe 10%, something that troubles many people. It did me too at one time, but the Rev. Edwene Gaines got me over my fear almost ten years ago, and I’ve been tithing ever since.

Now many people have the experience of their finances significantly improving once they make the commitment to tithe. The course creators expressed this as did several people in the class. I have to tell you that I have not experienced this, and I am a consistent, joyful tither. But what I can tell you is that I know, absolutely for certain, that tithing is not preventing me from being financially prosperous. In fact, I doubt that I could ever achieve permanent prosperity if I did not tithe.

And so tithing is a no-brainer for me. I would never consider giving it up as a failed experiment, because it hasn’t failed. Many wonderful things have happened to me since I began the practice:

• This past decade I’ve had the end to several chronic physical ailments and now enjoy perfect health.

• I lost about ten pounds five years ago and am now physically fit. I have the body I always wished for, so I can wear virtually anything I want and do anything I choose to without physical limitation.

• I continued the loving relationships I had all my life with both my parents until their deaths, including with my Dad after he developed Alzheimer’s disease a few years ago.

• My relationships with my twenty-something daughters is strong and loving.

• In 2007, I met the love of my life, Roger, and we just celebrated our second anniversary.

• My faith is stronger than it has ever been, and I am becoming more courageous and less fearful every day.

Yet financial prosperity has eluded me, despite trying everything I knew to do as well as I could possible do it. What’s that about? Join me next time for more.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Is Receiving an Art or a Science?

Our goal with this site and my upcoming book is for us to become skillful receivers, so that we can receive what we need and desire with grace and ease. Is receiving an art or a science? The definition of art includes the following: a skill, talent, knack, or ability; a creation by human endeavor rather than by nature; the application of techniques used by somebody in a particular field; or the ability to achieve things in a clever or shrewd way. Art involves finesse and creativity; it’s unique in its appearance and there is no one right way to go about it.

Science, on the other hand, is the study of the physical world, a systematic body of knowledge, or something studied or performed methodically. Science has a method and a process. It’s measurable and dependable: H20 is always water.

It seems to me that receiving well is both art and science. There are certain methods we can use to expand our opportunities to receive, such as forgiveness and releasing. Some are always appropriate, forgiveness is one, while others, releasing for instance, may not be. There may be some art or skill to knowing when it is time to let something or someone go. And even with a practice like forgiveness, the way it is accomplished can vary. Some things are easily forgiven, while other may take ongoing work and a different approach to finally resolve.

Yes, it seems that receiving takes a blend of art and science. Perhaps that’s one reason why it’s a habit many have yet to master, this author included!