Monday, January 31, 2005

Perfect Time

There is a perfect time for everything
and every purpose
and every person.
Now is the perfect time for me.
I move forward with my arms and heart wide open to meet my good.
Thank You God!

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Sunny Sunday

Dear God,

What a day!

Standing at the end of the day, looking back to its beginning, this last Sunday working at Renaissance Unity Church has been oddly unremarkable. I had thought that it would be an emotional and tear-filled day, and that seemed the case during the first service, head greeters & ushers circle. However, that on-the-edge feeling came and went as the day unfolded.

I am aware of a quiet grieving that has crept into my space in the past couple of days. Turning the page on this chapter of my life is at once, satisfying and sad. I gratefully remember the love and fun and regret many things that never got beyond thoughts or plans.

I find myself wondering what next week/month/year look like. And with the awareness of that particular thread of wondering, in a rush, I return to this now moment. It is ALL about staying focused on now.

The message I heard last night at Kensington Church about taking life from good to great has crossed my mind several times today. I am looking forward to hearing the rest of the messages in the series.

What a glorious afternoon, sunny and 33°. After so many frigid days, it was great to get out and walk six miles. I had let far too many days without significant exercise get by me. No more! I am happy to be back on the walking path.

Thank You!

Saturday, January 29, 2005

What does it mean to be me, now?

What does it mean to be me, now?

How many times have I asked myself this or similar questions? Who will I be when I grow up? Do I want to grow up?

Having a heart attack is a highly underrated and very effective form of radical life transformation. I had a mild heart attack on June 3, 2004 and nothing will ever be the same. Hallelujah!

In a couple of days, my employment relationship will change as a result of my own decision. After running a manufacturing company for twelve years and Executive Administrator for a large ministry for the past three and a half years, I am venturing out on my own! I have wrestled with this decision for a long time and might be wrestling still but life kept pushing. Finally, I could no longer ignore the pains of pushing. It is time to birth this next phase of living. Birth, as we all know, is not without its messes.

Many people have asked what my plans are. And I say, I am not exactly sure yet. I deliberately move forward into the mystery of my life. My intention is to remain focused on this moment. I have had some guidance that I won’t necessarily be doing any one thing or job. I have also had guidance that God is going to eliminate my indebtedness, for which I am grateful beyond words. I had gotten into debt as the manufacturing company went under and then subsequently owed the IRS a fairly large sum as well. But that is a story for another entry.

I have more than 20 years of experience with computers & networks and more recently with the Internet. I have started to study in order to become a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCSE). This is the direction I am currently being led as far as generating cash flow. Spirit is also nudging me that I will find cash flowing as a result of doing what I am guided to do. So whatever that means. I readily accept the abundance that is pouring into my life now.

And in the midst of all of the rest of this change, I met and began dating someone early in January. He is a very sweet, kind and gentle man. And I am having the opportunity to move through stuff I didn’t realize I had about being relationships.

There are several ideas/concepts that keep cropping up in my reading, musing, wandering, thinking. It feels somehow like these ideas are ingredients in an emerging stew or broth. It feels like my life is morphing into something be very different as I approach fifty.
  • Working with, developing and listening to inner guidance, the Voice for God and teaching other people about having a moment-by-moment experience of God. This is about becoming a mystic and there is nothing else that I do that is nearly as important.
  • I am a mystic, shaman, teacher, minister and healer. I am he who walks between worlds!
  • Loving myself unconditionally - the journey has finally begun.
  • Solitude, exploring the center of me, living in my power.
  • Bridge building between gay and straight folks. We must learn that we are all the same, we are truly One!
  • Writing, workshops and public speaking.
  • Healing and wholeness. The past 15 years have been a wild rollercoaster journey that has deposited me in a foreign and exciting place.
  • More friends for sharing the journey.
  • Gay men’s work - Inner child work – and whatever else arises for my own wholeness and in terms of some of my life work.
  • Integration of spirituality & sexuality. I have been feeling like I should focus more of my energies within the queer community. Although I also want to avoid a self-made ghetto. There is interesting work being done by many different groups and people in the areas of reclaiming our spirituality. I am sensing that there is a group or teacher that I will be collaborating with in some way.
  • Ministry - what does it mean to minister? Who and where am I called to serve.
  • Increased focus on what is real and important – less distraction or investment in things that are distracting.
  • A simpler, more focused and sustainable way of being
  • Becoming the make equivalent of a crone (after I learn what that is.)
  • Physical health/walking/diet!
  • Integration/inclusion of my body in my life. Reconnecting with myself physically – I seem to have disassociated myself from the physicality at some point.
  • Demonstrating/teaching what I hold to be true

    Living, moving, loving Spirit of All,

    I surrender.
    I do not know how or where You are leading me.
    I am dependent on You and trusting that You are guiding me.
    The ground is no longer clearly visible,
    I feel like I am standing on the edge of something.
    Help me stay centered and focused.
    I know that You provide everything I require to do the work You are calling me to do.
    For too long, I have held myself back. You have been calling to me for many years and I have only listened and responded partially.
    The past is past.
    Now is the time and I have begun already.
    Thank You for the intimacy of our relationship.
    Thank You for expressing Yourself in me and as me.
    I have no idea where we are headed, God.
    Lead the way and I will follow.

    Copyright © 2005 by Richard L. Beattie – all rights reserved

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Sweet Emotional Stuff ...

Today I attended my last staff meeting at Renaissance Unity. After the meeting, we had a celebration lunch which was coordinated by my friend Keith Messervy. Lasagna, salad and cakes. Did I say cakes! Oh my!

At the luncheon, Linda P. spoke about how I might think I'll be getting away from the early and late phone calls but that she still would call. She also spoke about the role that I played for her during the past few years. That part really touched me because I am clear that one of my primary "jobs" was to be and hold a certain space on the Executive Team.

This evening, we had a good Rainbow Unity meeting! I am so thankful for the group and all that it has meant to me for the past 5 years or so that we have been meeting.

The day was not as emotional as I thought it might be. Still, I am aware of the rawness of my feelings just beneath the surface. I wonder when it will come flooding out?

Dear God,
Thank You for the work I have be blessed to do at church for the past few years.
Thank You for the people who have touched me and opened their hearts to me.
Thank You for the skills I have honed and sharpened.
Thank You for the admin team!
They have been my right and left hand.
In Your name I bless Renaissance Unity.
So be it!

Copyright (c) 2005 by Richard L. Beattie - all rights are reserved.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Focus in the midst of the storm.

It is cold and gray outside--a typical mid-winter Michigan morning. Soon, I will to go into the church where I have been employed for the past three and a half years as Executive Administrator and continue working on the wrap-up and hand off of my duties project as I come to the end of my employment. It is interesting to me that even though I am voluntarily leaving in response to what I perceive to be a "calling" from God, my gut is churning and my mind is in a bit of a spin the past couple of days. I gave notice to my employer at the beginning of December because I believe that Spirit is nudging/urging me in a different direction. I am leaving my current job without having a specific job lined up at a time when managing personal cash flow has been an ongoing challenge. Today, I have been a little in the fearful "What the *&^% am I doing?" space, and it feel yucky. It is so not about what am I supposed to do. I know what I am supposed to do and that is stay focused on God in this moment. Literally to let God and let go.

I surrender. Either I am "listening" to internal guidance, the Voice for God if you will--or I am hearing voices. Interesting stuff really, especially for me. I have the deepest intuitive sense that not knowing exactly what is next is part of or even the focus of the current process I find myself in. Staying in the moment, listening for guidance and taking action as I am directed.

This morning I can hear my dear friend, Rev. Sandy Scott, teaching that we all have an ego or, as she often referred to it, a monkey on our shoulder that is whispering in our ear. The message from this mouth is often something like: "So, who do you think you are that God should have a mission or a plan for you? Who are you kidding?" We all have a version of this whiny, self-doubting loudmouth but we do not have to give it the microphone. We can call upon the spirit of God within us for reinforcement and courage and peace.

Dear God,

I surrender control of my life to You.

In those moments where the muck of self-doubt seems to be pulling me in, hold onto me.

I place my trust in and my focus on You alone.

I have often heard that to demonstrate is to teach, and I get it God. It is time for me to demonstrate.

I am relying on You to guide my day, actions, thoughts, the way I make and spend money, literally my very life.

Help me get out of my way and allow Your spirit to pour itself though every cell and moment and thought of my existence.

Less of me and more of Thee!

So it is.



Copyright (c) 2005 by  Richard L. Beattie - all rights are reserved.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Odd day

Quite the odd day. Getting ready to leave my job as Executive Administrator at Renaissance Unity is odd. Does the fact that I believe I "listen" to God and feel directed to make this dramatic change in my life is probably even odder. Is odder a word? No clue!

I do know this: God has a plan and a purpose for my life and I consciously and willingly surrender myself to that plan and purpose.

Happy birthday to my sister girlfriend Charlette Manning, - Charlette is the best!

(c) Copyright 2005 by Richard L. Beattie - all rights reserved!

Monday, January 24, 2005

Everything is changing ...

Hold on - everything is changing!

Change has been the consistent and persistent message from Spirit since last June 3 and the heart attack that seemed to launch me into so many new directions.

It is Monday morning of the last full week of my current employment. Emotionally, this is an interesting and challenging time. I am occasionally wistful about the people I will miss and the future activities I will not be part of. A couple of days ago, I picked up a document that I had printed and noticed that someone had printed a copy of the birthday list that we use to remember everyone’s birthday. I glanced at November and noticed that my name and date had been removed. Oh my! This was an unexpected sharp jab in the emotional solar plexus. Now, intellectually I realize that I am leaving and that I will not be part of the staff as by next birthday rolls around--but this is one of those times when intellect and emotion provide differing experiences of the same event.

Still, I feel the deep-in-the-guts nudge that I know to be Spirit, urging me forward. This is the same inward push that led me to give notice at the beginning of December that I was going to leave my job at the end of January. Mind you, I am doing this without having a job lined up. Wow…

Yet, when I find myself falling into fear-based patterns of wondering, “Okay Ric, what the heck have you done now?” something pops-up to remind me of the larger picture that God seems to be painting.

Last Friday evening, I officiated the funeral of a 40-year-old man who apparently had a heart attack as a result of drug use. I was immediately impressed by how easily that could have been me 16 years ago. How many times I had taken that big hit on a pipe and fell the pounding of my heart in my chest and wondered if I would make it … Thank You God I have made it thus far!

I receive a sense of satisfaction and purpose when I officiate at a funeral. Not that I enjoy that a family has had a loss. However, assisting families at this time uses some gifts that I have been given and is extremely rewarding.

As I talked with this man’s family, I could feel his presence close to me. I sensed the pain and turmoil of a man who had never quite fit in with the world around him. He was a biracial gay man in a primarily conservative white, straight family and he never seemed to get “over the hump” of owning and being proud of who and what he was.

Once again, I realize that part of my divine assignment is to minister to those who have bought the lie that they are outside of the family of Love!

Dear God,

Thank You for the reminders that there is much “work” for me to do.
I have no idea how this day or the next week will unfold.
I do not know how I will earn a living after the next paycheck.
I am clear that it is not particularly my business to know so I am placing myself in Your hands and care.
It is my intention to trust that you are in each moment and to focus on Your presence alone.
Fill me with strength and the sense to do as I am guided.
Where do You want me to go today?

© Richard L. Beattie 01/24/2005