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Welcoming the New Year

By Rev. Carol

I don’t know anyone who thinks last year went by slowly. Even the younger generation felt its rapid-fire quality. Is time moving more quickly? It seems so. But maybe we just aren’t stopping to breathe enough and notice the Presence. It is the Presence after all, which establishes Itself as an eternal Now and invites us into the experience of everlasting Life. Practicing the Presence is where my New Year resolution lies this year.

Every January at Abundant Life Spiritual Center, we start the New Year with the Burning Bowl service, where we release the thoughts, beliefs and attachments which no longer serve us and we write out our intentions for the New Year. We then launch into a January series to support those new intentions and help us to establish new identities for ourselves. In past years we’ve done “Journey to New Beginnings” using the story of the Moses and the Exodus, “The Fifth Agreement” based on the book by Don Miguel Ruiz and “The Big Leap” based on the book by Gay Hendricks. Each February, the White Stone ceremony concludes our New Year series as we listen to Spirit for new names representing our transformed selves.

This New Year, I am sensing a pull to personally enter into a more intimate relationship with God. When we center ourselves in God, everything else falls into place. My January lesson series is "A Closer Walk With God" based on the book of the same name by Jim Rosemergy. I remember this book impacting my life in a profound way many years ago. What if we held the intention of living a spiritual life, rather than a "better human life"? What if we focused our lives on answering Spirit’s call to “Know me”?

There is always opportunity for growth. We are here to grow. Where do you feel you are in your relationship with God? How can you grow? Believe me, I ask that of myself too. Over many years I have committed myself to being in spiritual practice every day. Being in spiritual practice is what keeps us connected to God after all. I do my best to pray each morning and connect with others in prayer throughout the week. I meditate. I spend a great deal of my life focusing on the spiritual. And yet, I know that I am constantly distracted! I can feel how frequently I let ego draw me out of the experience.

I sense there is so much more. Out of that sense, I feel a call now to go much deeper; to stay connected to Spirit for broader spans of time; to stop and pray, be mindful, and stand in awe of Life more frequently throughout my day. It may be the most challenging muscle to build. And building that muscle is my resolve.

Wherever you are on your spiritual path – wherever you are in your relationship with God – as part of the human family, we are all being called into greater intimacy and deeper connection. In Unity, we say we believe we are One. But in our hearts, we rarely live it. Intimately knowing God at the depth of Being will keep our hearts awake. As we embark on this blessed New Year, will you join me on this journey?

“I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19

Silent Unity


Abundant Life Spiritual Center, affiliated with Unity Worldwide Ministries, is a non-profit corporation. All donations are tax-deductible.