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Greetings dear ones,

I sat in PopEye’s for lunch this past Saturday, after coaching the kids at Zoe Ministries Gospel Kids Theater Group and before visiting my mom, because I didn’t have enough for the salad bar at Golden Corral where I usually go. I was sinking pretty deeply into financial worries because I didn’t know where the money for September’s bills was coming from.  By the grace of early Social Security and my tenant/housemate, I could pay the mortgage. But my speaking business is not yet generating what I need for everything else. As a creative person who has for years tried to balance following my heart and paying my bills, I was feeling sorry for me and not a little scared.

Then I watched a tall, thin young man come in with three little children, and I observed as he completed his purchase, and walked out with a very small bag of food, three eager little ones following him.  Did they have enough? Could he pay their bills? I thought about my sense of my purpose for being on this planet – to help folks, especially working families, find spiritual alternatives to all the stuff that’s not working very well for us. For twenty years, I’ve been studying spiritual principles of abundant living and healing, starting with Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. I felt some shame and doubt: what do I have to offer in the way of wisdom, hope and practical advice, if I can’t handle my own fears when things get tight? Ah shame! I sort of know not to allow shame to take over, but sometimes it’s just hard.

I’m working to grow my speaking/performing business, based on my deep conviction that I’m here on this planet to help others by sharing what I learn about who we really are and what it means to live a spiritually based abundant life.  I believe with all my heart I believe with all my heart, in my “heart part, ” that we are beloved children of the universe, and that the promise, ask and you shall receive, is a real one. I’ve already been through losing my part-time job due to funding cuts, facing foreclosure and working successfully to get a loan modification. I had hought, that’s all behind me. I thanked the Universe for Unemployment, wrote two more plays, had one selected out of over 300 for a festival of new plays, hired a business coach and a creativity coach, even worked a few gigs in the spring, and applied for jobs. I was on my way!

Then Summer came, and with it several family crises that called for my help. And I was exhausted. My creativity coach explained that after a large period of expansion, it’s necessary to contract, pull in, rest and restore. So I did that to some extent. And then Unemployment ended, no job applications bore fruit, and I had done little to generate more speaking gigs. Fear, shame, guilt. I shoulda, woulda, coulda. Now the rest of me, the “not heart part” was having a bit of a challenge with the asking and with the receiving!

My minister, sensing my struggles, handed me Edwene Gaines, Four Spiritual Principles of Prosperity. I read it in two gulps, resonating with this amazing woman who went from penniless to powerful by applying four spiritual principles: tithing, forgiveness, goal setting, and finding ones’ purpose. I loved her story and was determined to follow in her footsteps. So I immediately began tithing, and working on the other three principles.

And that’s where the shame came in! How can I be in this situation if I’m practicing the spiritual principles? I must be doing it wrong. Even when I try to do it right. I must be blocking my good. etc. etc. etc. Well after much good spiritual coaching, and not a few miracles in the past 48 hours, I’ve decided that my most important work is to learn not only about tithing and serving, but about allowing and receiving, WITHOUT SHAME AND GUILT. And it’s ok for me to teach while I’m learning. I don’t have to have it all down perfectly in order to be of service! So I’m dedicating this space to sharing what I’m learning in the hopes that it will make a difference for those of you out there who recognize yourselves in my experiences.

Let’s go on this journey of discovery together! I look forward to your comments.

Much love and blessing, Terry

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