Monday, January 3, 2011

Ruth's Calendar--- Season of Manifestation

Ruth's Calendar--- The third Season is the season of Manifestation

OK my year has only three seasons----- but really it works best for me this way----four seasons may be just too much for this California girl. I have never lived any where I needed to actually think of the seasons too much. My seasons kind of are defined by "taking the patio furniture out to the yard" and "putting the patio furniture under cover from the rain".

My first season was the packing all the things away, releasing past fears, mistakes, "sins". Cleaning up and starting a new year. This began usually somewhere around the Labor Day week end. Put the patio furniture away. Buckle down for the winter, prepare for the start of the school year, re-start of many club activities, prepare for the holidays, Plant the bulbs in the garden.
Season One the New Year Season ends with the celebration of the birth of Jesus.

Moving into the Second Season: the promise of HOPE. The renewing of faith ( things hoped for....), things worked towards, I have been known to start tap dancing lessons in this season, to spend long hours blogging (like I am doing right now), hankering down and ordering plane tickets, registering for conferences, setting up goals, planning my yearly budget, planning my yearly vacation time. Planning my year around the seeds having been planted, making choices what needs to "grow", cutting off dead branches, preparing for new growth, preparing the soil with nutrients and toil. Gathering my tools, renewing web site fees, buying hardware, software for computer related projects, entering into year long contracts. This season of stepping out in faith for things HOPED FOR ends on Easter Morning.

OK --- my tradition for the new season---
Having prepared myself for the year.
I have thought about what I want to do in the new year,
I have planned for what I want to do in the new year,
I have hoped for what I want to do in the new year.
Now I release it to God. (and yes my husband participates with me).

RELEASING: My husband and I place the things HOPED FOR through out the year in our GOD box. We place Prayer request, concerns, worries, etc written on a piece of paper and placed in a pretty box. Our GOD box is God's IN_BOX -- a prayer request box. We keep the box placed somewhere prominent in our home. Usually near a passage way we travel by several times a day. This reminds us to send up a prayer for our requests each time we pass it.

We review our pieces of paper with our prayer requests from the GOD box sometime between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. The week of Easter miracles. I can and should write blogs on miracles.

At reviewing we are often amazed to review all the prayers that had been answered. We cherish and give thanks for every prayer that has been answered.

When our grandson Nicholas was born premature; his grandfather put many request in the GOD box for him and his parents.

But if in our review of the pieces of paper, we find there is unanswered prayer or on-going prayer issues. We set them aside and pray hard that MIRACLE WEEK.

Come Easter morning, we review pieces of prayer still needing prayer, we count them up. We then purchase a helium filled balloon for each item we are releasing to GOD. We tie a string to each piece of paper and go somewhere to release the balloons.
This is usually a special sharing time for Tony and I. The flight of the balloons varies each year with weather conditions, locations, and our energy level. We prayed throughout the year for these items --- it is now time to release them and give them to GOD.

This releases us to "fly" lightly. To fly without weight or drag. To float and let GOD.

To be in the world but not apart of it: To be in our physical LIFE'S but also fly in our Spiritual LIFE'S.

My cup is overflowing theory---- with matter that can be seen and matter that can not be seen but can be proven that it does exist.

The step into the new realization. I think of it like I planned for the year, I buckled down and did what I could do, and now I release it to GOD to complete the job. That feeling of lift like in an airplane/ kite/ . I prepare the airplane, then I stretch out my arms and run as fast as I can and then the draft lifts my wings and I fly. I walk into Holy Spirit space. I realize I am no longer in the driver's seat. and the garden grows, and the children show what they learnt that year, and your classes conclude with new knowledge, and the dance recitals, and the county fairs share the sewing and woodwork projects, and it can be beautiful. It can and is beautiful if prepared for and "hoped for". If you can not HOPE for it --- it may be there but you just can not see IT.

So I float into my Easter to Labor Day "vacation". The part where I live in HOLY SPIRIT.Letting GOD and letting GO. Viewing things from a different perspective. Going on my trips, enjoying my garden, traveling, visiting family and friends, sharing my projects and enjoying others sharing their projects, getting out in nature. This long vacation idea probably came to me as a child. Easter to Labor Day Weekend was one long summer to me as a kid. And I loved it and still do.

Which would bring me back to September and another Happy New Year. A little older, A little wiser, but ready to do it again! It will be time to buckle down for another winter.....

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Ruth's Calendar--- The Season of HOPE

In my previous blog I stated my New Year starts in September. September is my month to clean, plan, start my year. I used the analogy of planning my garden and planting my bulbs into the ground. I compared the planting of the bulbs, to starting a school semester, to planning your goals for a years worth of accomplishments. So September to Christmas Realization I call the start of my New Year.

My Ruth calendar next moves into the season of HOPE. The new season starts the moment I experience that special touch of GOD during the Christmas season that I once again realize GOD's gift of the baby Jesus. It comes with a special song, a moving film, a Christmas card, a sermon or just a moment while in prayer. Each year I wait for "my gift" of HOPE. My gift of HOPE for a better tomorrow. My gift for a closer walk with God.

One year it came when I sent a Thomas Kinkade flower arrangement to a friend for her birthday in early December and I received a thank you letter telling me how very much it meant to her. I knew it was God that had directed me to send it that year.
This year was no different. God sent me a message of a healed heart. This year He used FACEBOOK. lol

I stated the season began on Christmas Eve because usually on Christmas Eve I have a moment to reflect on my glimpse of HOPE on that night. The birth of Jesus was the gift of HOPE. The gift of promise to salvation. The gift that led to the gift of the Holy Spirit.

So this next season in Ruth's Calendar is the time to reflect on the life of Jesus. The time to reveal in the words of Jesus. The time of preparing the soil, sowing of seeds, pruning back the grape vines, the time of wait, the time of honing our sense of prayer. Whereas we begun our studies in September, now we are embedding our lessons into our souls, our hearts, our minds. Hours spent in the garden gives us time to reflect on Jesus' words. Time to prune back the dead vines. Time to shape our rose bushes/trees.

Time of cold, time to just have faith of the good to come. Rain, rain and more rain. Time of violent Winds, winds tearing down of anything not solid to the ground. Time of revelation. Time for trail. Time to see that which will survive and that which will not be able to survive the harshness of the world.

The ocean beats against the shore, breaking, changing the earths surface.

Then March --- we start to see the new growth!! by the end of March -- flowers, including volunteer flowers. Rainbows, kites, the slow awakening of the earth from it's sleep. Baby animals, green hills, creeks full of water running down the hills.

This season started with the gift of HOPE, ends on Easter Sunday.
The Season of Hope is from Christmas to Easter.
Easter Sunday when we celebrate our fruition of salvation. Where there was HOPE now there is fulfillment. We now have the tools, opportunity, the abilities to "see forever".

On a Clear Day --You Can See Forever!

Our preparation, our planning, our believing, our faith, our honing of our prayers and Bible study now pays off!! Kids graduate! Gardens Bloom, Interest groups emerge with demonstrations of achievement, county fair admissions emerge, art, woodwork, sewing projects manifested during these cold days are revealed, Jesus Rises, The whole world celebrates.

The Season of HOPE is complete on Easter Sunday, we move to the Season of Fulfillment. God's promise is fulfilled with Jesus ascending from the tomb. And we are given the GIFT of enlightenment, guidance, protection of the Holy Spirit. We have moved another cycle up the spiral of spiritual enlightenment. We now see what brought fruit and that which did not bring fruit. Another lesson learned. Another year to observe, to grow, to learn.

So Today's date per Ruth's Calendar is The day 9,Season of Hope,year 60

Next blog: the Season of Fulfillment per Ruth's calendar.

Ruth's Calendar--- Happy New Year

Happy new Year --- I hear that quite a bit all through the year. There is the Chinese New Year Gung Hay Fat Cho, Hebrew New Year L'shanah tovah tikatev v'taihatem, Viet Namese New Year, so I am posting the year calendar as defined by Ruth.

The NEW YEAR is a time of reflection, preparation, cleaning, planning for a new start, the new year. All those things happen for me in September.

It follows the fluctuation of the patterns of the moon, my own bio-system, weather, planting seasons, life experiences and people that influenced me.

My New Year like the Jewish New Year is September. As mentioned above this is not a particular date but fluctuates:

Here are the Jewish New Year dates for 5 years according to the Georgian Calendar.
Jewish Year 5769: sunset September 29, 2008 - nightfall October 1, 2008
Jewish Year 5770: sunset September 18, 2009 - nightfall September 20, 2009
Jewish Year 5771: sunset September 8, 2010 - nightfall September 10, 2010
Jewish Year 5772: sunset September 28, 2011 - nightfall September 30, 2011
Jewish Year 5773: sunset September 16, 2012 - nightfall September 18, 2012

and Ruth's calendar also changes on a different date each year. Ruth's beginning of preparations for the New Years starts with the end of Labor Day weekend. Because a gating issue on Ruth's New year is the beginning of the school year. Preparation and celebrating the Ruth New Year is the following practices:

1--Cleaning the children's closets in preparation for new school clothes,
2--Setting up study areas for school work. Lots of Bible studies, interest group meetings, craft and cooking classes begin now also. The logic being summer vacation are complete. People will be settled to enjoy a new "start" of learning.
3-- Winterizing the home. Chalk the windows, clean the heater filters, bring in the patio furniture, covering the plants from frost.
4.--- remove debris, sweep up the leaves, clean the gutters,

Clean---to make room for the new!

and the New Year is complete when you plant the bulbs! Bulb planting day is truly a special day for Ruth.
Bulb planting day is Ruth's NEW YEAR's DAY.
To put to rest the seeds that will signify the next growth. the next life if you will. This follows a belief similar of God lying us to rest peacefully as we await our "new life".

The day after planting the bulbs I rest. I imagine my garden blooming in early spring. I look forward to seeing the results of my planting of the bulbs.

In honor of the Jewish (Old Testament) holiday,I eat apples dipped in honey, a symbol of a wish for a sweet new year.

In honor of the Italian farmers, I sip Lambrusco and spill a bit of the wine on my flowerbed. There is a sense of tradition, gratitude and faith in these small actions.

Another practice of the holiday practiced by the Jewish is Tashlikh ("casting off"). They walk to flowing water, such as a creek or river, on the afternoon of the first day and empty our pockets into the river, symbolically casting off their sins. Small pieces of bread are commonly put in the pocket to cast off. This practice is not discussed in the Bible, but is a long-standing custom.

Another version of this practice, not Jewish yet symbolic of casting off, is the burning bowl. On a sheet of paper place your thoughts on sins, unforgiving, burdens, strive. Start a fire (symbolic of purification by fire). Remove the slips of paper from your pockets. Place the paper in the fire to be burnt and sent to ashes.

The bulbs have been set, the next day was spent honoring the new year and releasing the past.

This is followed by the final preparations for Christmas. I strive to be done by Halloween. All the decorations for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas are brought forth, reviewed and enjoyed. All gifts are purchased and wrapped minus the last ribbon tops. The ribbon tops seldom look fresh by Dec 25 if added in October.

Why Halloween?? Because Halloween was my grandson Willy's favorite holiday. And in truth the start of Will and my very busy time. Will looked forward to Halloween much like most children looked forward to Christmas. I wanted to be finished, relaxed to accommodate Willy with his enthusiasm.

Which places us immediately into Thanksgiving and my birthday. A time of personal gratitude and reflection.

Taking time to cherish and being grateful for my life, friends, and simple abundance.

And now December --- Birthdays in my family abound in October to December. and although we do not get together for each and every birthday-- I do reflect and choose to honor the day with my mindful presence. Being stress free from Christmas shopping, Christmas preparations allows me this luxury. Allows me to enjoy and celebrate my friends and myself in very special ways.

Being stress free allows me to focus on the celebrating of Jesus' birth. Tony and I attend church celebrations, special music programs, and enjoy all the celebrating going on around us. November and December is also a great time to plant the most important seeds of all. The seeds of kindness to others. With just a little bit of effort and a willingness to be open, you will find an opportunity for planting seeds during this season. Seeds of charity, seeds of HOPE, seeds for a new year.

Sharing at the Senior Center:

The first year I decided to be more mindful of Christmas celebrations, was the first year I saw the huge colorful ornaments in the mall. Was the first year I took time to sit and enjoy the school children singing in the mall, was the first year I went to San Francisco and walked floor by floor looking at the huge tree and it's decorations at the Newman Marcus. Taking time to sip tea on the top floor. And time to Thank God for all that I have.

I do still purchase gifts during these months but not with the mad rush as in years previously. Now it is with a blessed calm and true appreciation of the items purchased.

So that is Ruth's calendar approximately end of August to 24 December. It is the time to plant the seeds, the bulbs, the plans, the future. Planning, preparing and planting needs to be accomplished first, at the first of your year. I plant for that which I wish to sow in the new year.

Next season in Ruth calendar is the season of HOPE. The season of HOPE begins on Christmas EVE!!

I will post the SEASON OF HOPE in the next blog.