Winter Solstice: Darkness and Light

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Each year, along with winter, comes the winter solstice. This is a time when the sun might seem lower to the earth around noon, December 21st, 2020, as we experience the shortest day of the year. For the Northern Hemisphere, the solstice marks the beginning of winter, and in the Southern Hemisphere, this day marks the beginning of summer.

This year an even more fabulous celestial alignment occurs as Saturn and Jupiter align, creating what appears to be one great big star in the sky! This year the alignment will be its closest since 1623 AD, even though the alignment will occur every 20 years or so.

Although the two planets will appear closer than they are, actually they are quite far apart! Their alignment will create one big beautiful shining light! To us, they mark hope as the skies help us to reflect upon darkness and great light this year!

I heard it said once we need the darkness in life because it makes the light seem so much brighter. As we wave good-bye to 2020, remembering the darkness it sent to many of us, let’s remember the light it sent as well. In life, there will be good moments and not so good. We all experience them both. For those of us wise enough to understand, we will see good in even our darkest hours.

Tears are but for a moment, but the light that comes from God is one that shines in the heartbeat of all humanity. Let’s remember as the year closes that solstice comes to teach us that two coming together as one can create one great light, that darkness can help us to see the light so much brighter, and nothing ever lasts forever. Our dreams and aspirations are here now. Let’s work on them this coming season, beginning right now!

Love and much light to you!

Loving you from here!

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

JenineMarie.com

“Compassion” Will You Please Stand Up?

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As I picked up the vacuum this morning to do a little house cleaning, I found myself becoming more than emotional. It’s not unusual for me. I am an empath, so this happens to me a lot. My heart suddenly felt like it dropped into my stomach. I stopped the vacuum and took a deep breath. Something has been on my mind and in my heart lately and it has to do with compassion in this world.

A memory came back to me during a time when I published a newsletter that circulated around for a couple years or so. One particular article was submitted by my mother concerning my reaching out as an editor and writer. One way she described me in the article was an individual who could never understand why people treated each other with such lack of love and compassion. As I grew I came to know and understand that the dark sides of life tend to make the light look so much brighter. In the balance of things we tend to create both in this world. I still struggle with people’s lack of compassion for others. I guess I could describe it as the worst form of “self centeredness”.

I realize that not everyone is at the place of understanding how we all affect one another and also “what goes around comes around”. I can’t help wishing some days that more of humanity would learn this. Give out compassion, receive it. Give out grace, and receive it. Give out self centeredness and get that back in experience. The only thing I know of that intercepts this Karmic law is God’s grace. Unfortunately, most people have to come to a point of desperation in order to even look for God, let alone ask for grace and forgiveness.

Although I’ve written on compassion before, it is a sensitive topic for me today. I have tears as I write this; not for myself, but for the hard heartedness I see and wish there was a lot less of. The Bible speaks of a perfect Kingdom. We really truly are not there yet. It would be nice to have it though. I only know to do my part, and that is to send out compassion with my prayers and intentions as much as I can. Every individual makes a difference and every person affects humanity as a whole. It’s a large view, I know! It’s the truth though.

This morning I found myself asking if compassion “could please stand up.” “Compassion, I need to see you today!” So, in a big way, today I am closing my eyes and sending compassion wherever it needs to seep into. Compassion, please enter into the dark places in the hearts of humankind, and cleanse out the dark places, misunderstandings, hurtful feelings toward others, and self centered absorption. I don’t have the answer to world peace, but I do know we can choose to be a piece of it. It can be hard, especially when the world seems unfair and we really want to take on a tude about it. We have those days. But, please get back in balance! We all need you and whatever love and compassion you can give this world.

“Compassion, please stand up and take your place in the hearts of humankind. We need you today and every day.”

If you will, close your eyes for a moment and think of someone or something you truly love. When that love feeling fills your heart, send it out with intention to every area of the earth. Imagine compassion and love seeping into the dark places and hold this image as long as you can. I know I will be grateful for you today. Let compassion be your way of life and as a part of love on this earth.

Loving you from here,

Dr Rev Jenine Marie Howry

 

Is It Depression, Or Is It Sadness?

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A young woman was talking to a neighbor as she sat down at the curb in front of her house. “I am so depressed!”, she exclaimed. As I walked by I could hear the other neighbor ask her what was going on in her life. She talked about all of the losses she suddenly had gone through. She went from a concerned and upset face to an all out sob as she talked about the recent details of her life. I could tell by her sobbing clearly she was not depressed but grieving and sad from loss.

So many of us get the two confused. Let me make it easy on you to determine depression from sadness. Sadness expresses itself in tears, an open display of upset feelings,  rivers of emotion and the need to get it out of our system. Depression is on the other side of the coin. Depression presses down and there is no expression of sadness. It’s rare to see a depressed person sobbing although it can happen as depression releases. Usually depression leads with a sense of having a ton of bricks on ones chest or a heaviness. Depression causes sleepless nights, too much sleeping, and a feeling like the world is sitting on one’s shoulders. Both can cause a sense of heartache but sadness from grief or loss causes open emotion.

Sadness is a sense of being broken open. Depression feels like being broken in silence and can be caused by being oppressed or shut down from within. Think of depression as a tree that neglects to shed its leaves in the fall. There will not be a release, nor new growth when the spring comes. sadness from grief or loss is a like a tree that sheds its leaves, releases, is watered, and will spring forth with new strength when the spring comes.

When depression occurs it can be quite painful. It will manifest in body aches, loss of appetite, a sense of hopelessness, and the inability to emote ones feelings. Those who endure this from 2-3 weeks or longer are said to be clinically depressed. This can be brief or even a lifelong struggle. The word depression is often used very loosely but it can be very serious and sometimes even deadly. More people die from suicide due to depression than heart attacks. This is how important expression of our emotions truly can be.

We are meant to express sadness and emotion. Don’t ever feel bad for crying or allowing feelings to break loose. Your period of sadness will pass because feelings are opened up and are allowed air to heal. Depression can last a long time and seal in soul scars so tightly they are hard to pry loose.

We all go through seasons of sadness and even depression. Every person has had at least one episode of depression in their lifetime. Also, remember, sadness is a part of life. Without the tears we shed there would be no healing from the effects of this anxiety filled world we live in. Both deep saddness and depression can be places that feel very dark, but remember they are only opportunities to eventually see how glorious the light of life truly is! How much more can we appreciate the great things in life after having had experienced the hard things?

Remember this beloved. You will overcome! You have God-given life coursing through your veins and that reality will always assure you healing when you need it!

Loving you from here,

Dr. Jenine Marie Howry

Here is Your Weekly Wisdom!

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The place inside you that feels void is only a place of new creation 

The bible tells us just before God created things on the earth it was void, and darkness covered the face of the deep. Everything God does has order. When something is void it is a blank slate waiting to be written upon. We often feel a void inside of ourselves when seasons change, as life changes, or when things in life become reordered. It might seem very dark and difficult in deep places inside you but in reality it is a place waiting to be filled with new creation.

The answer to your void is not to the question, “how am I going to get through this darkness”, but “what new things am I going to create from this darkness?” If you keep looking into a dark space thinking about how dark it is, you will only keep seeing darkness. If you look and see all new and positive possibilities, you naturally will become inspired by God to create new things.

Today, what is possible in your life? What new things inspire you and where would you like to be? Place yourself there in your mind, heart, and spirit. Soon you will see how God works to create them to be so.

Loving you from here,

Dr. Jenine Marie Howry