#140 — December, 2023

I love having my ghosts and I love having my memories.

— Debbie Reynolds

Greetings, Inspired Seekers:

This is both the season of memories and the season of anticipation; it is the season of light and darkness, of patience and edginess, of gratitude and greed. Yes, it is the season of opposites, fitting as we enter a holy season prior to the end of the calendar year.

We are a mixed bag, all of us existing on this plane, at the intersection of humanity and divinity. And, jingle bells and dreidels notwithstanding, our memories fill a groaning board with dishes both sweet and sour.

I remember – tables crammed with family and a feast together, laughter and music and doors open to all who appeared, and other times with empty chairs no longer filled.

I remember – solos center stage at midnight with applause and, at other times, feeling invisible in a crowded room.

I remember – the joy of love being offered and the days of sorrow suffered as my heart was dismissed.

I remember – the love of those who hugged too tight and whose arms are now lost in the ethers.

I remember – the depths of doubt and the profound re-discovery of the sanctity of faith, fully present.

And, I suspect, as you read this list your memories will find their companions here as well. We are all more alike than we sometimes realize. And now, as I gather and hold these collective memories that form my tree of life, I remember and trust that the oil was always in the lanterns and the yule log was always bright with flame; the Bodhi tree was always a shelter for inspiration and the Solstice wheel was always revolving. The star was always shining and the Baby was always in the manger.

This season, may your memories fill your heart as you come to a new realization: joy, hope and faith are always waiting in the shadows for us. Grace appears when we are ready. That is the beauty of the moment when heaven – in all its forms – touched earth for the first time.

Let us hold all that is sacred close, release that which no longer serves and enter this season and the New Year with gladness and hope. While we tend to live from our history, let us also live from the inspiration that is always present.

Enjoy the holy days – all of them – every delicious and hopeful minute!

Grace, Always with you,
Reverend Deborah

Question of the Month: Can you hold the sweet and the sad in perfect balance and enter the season with love?

The Reverend Dr. Deborah Darlington wishes people of old traditions and new ones, a joyous and celebratory season, full of meaning and inspiration. She can be reached at GraceMatters@TheSpaceForGrace.com or 215 260 1611.

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