I have been actively on a spiritual journey since I was 15 years old (that’s 25 years now if you are counting). My mother was ordained as a Unity minister when I was 20. I was ordained as a Unity minister at the age of 30. So, needless to say, I have worked with countless spiritual practices, participated in a staggering array of spiritual experiences and worked with nearly every imaginable spiritual tool.
Early on in my journey I was always trying to do it “right”. I would pay close attention to what those around me were doing and begin to mimic it straight away. If my friends were into chanting…I would quickly become the Queen of “OOOOHHHMMMMM”. When those about me started journaling, I bought just the right kind of pens so as to emote deeply on those pages. When someone said, “You’ve got to read THIS book…it has all the answers!” I would be in the car on the way to Barnes & Noble faster than you can say “Feng Shui for Dummies”. I was always trying to sing someone else’s song. I was a spiritual mockingbird. The sad part is, I was so busy trying to mimic everyone else, I couldn’t hear the song my heart was trying to sing.
One example I remember vividly is when the book “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron came out. Everywhere I went someone was reading it, talking about it, taking a class on it, etc. So, of course, I jumped right in. One of the components of the book was a daily practice called “Morning Pages”. You were supposed to wake up in the morning and sit down with a pen and paper and write three full pages of whatever flowed into your mind. My friends were raving about this practice! They shared how freeing it was and how creative they felt and how so many wonderful things flowed onto the page. Me…not so much! I would drag myself out of bed and sit bleary-eyed at my table with my pen in hand. As the pen and paper met I would begin to express deep spiritual truths like “why am i up this early and what in the world am i supposed to be writing anyway this is the stupidest thing i have ever heard of I need coffee I want to go back to bed blahblahblahblah”. I made it through exactly one week of “Morning Pages” and then that book went back onto my shelf to await the next church yard sale.
In the last few years I thankfully find myself in a place of greater maturity in my spiritual journey. I have begun to find joy in following my own heartsong and my own guidance about what fits who I am and how I want to know God. Just the other day I finally found MY version of “Morning Pages”. During Christmas time I started a tradition of sitting in my living room at night after the house was quiet and just enjoying the sacred peace of the Christmas tree. After the tree came down, I found myself still drawn into that space for a time of quiet contemplation before bed. A few days ago, a thought came to me that I needed to make sure to remember the next day so I grabbed a note pad and wrote it down. As I sat there reflecting I got a wonderful ministry idea so I grabbed the note pad and wrote it down. Then another idea came, and then another and by the time I was ready for bed I had 3 pages of insights, thoughts and ideas written down.
So now I have my own spiritual practice, born out of my own heart’s song. Not sure what to call it. Maybe “My Creative Lullaby” or something catchy like that. I don’t know if it will sweep the nation or land me on Oprah but ultimately I don’t care. It is mine. It works for me. Try it if you want to…or don’t. I encourage you to get quiet and listen deeply. What song is YOUR heart trying to sing?