Thursday, April 3, 2014

#BlogExodus: From Enslavement to Blessing

When I first started to think about what I might write in a post around the theme "enslave," this paragraph from The Union Prayer Book popped into my head. (Yes, I hail from the generation that can recite it in its entirety from memory.):
May the time not be distant, O God, when Thy name shall be worshiped in all the earth, when unbelief shall disappear and error be no more. Fervently we pray that the day may come when all men shall invoke Thy name, when corruption and evil shall give way to purity and goodness, when superstition shall no longer enslave the mind, nor idolatry blind the eye, when all who dwell on earth shall know that to Thee alone every knee must bend and every tongue give homage. O may all, created in Thine image, recognize that they are brethren, so that, one in spirit and one in fellowship, they may be forever united before Thee. Then shall Thy kingdom be established on earth and the word of Thine ancient seer be fulfilled: The Lord will reign forever and ever.
It's not superstition that enslaves my mind, though.  It's negativity.

In chatting with a friend yesterday, she shared that when she finds herself similarly enslaved, she counts her blessings -- literally.  Each night, she says, she records three blessings from the day just ended, focusing on good, positive events and experiences in spite of whatever frustrations, disappointments, or difficulties may have dogged her during the day.

Last night, I gave it a try, jotting these notes in a journal:
April 3, 2014
Three Blessings
1. Conversations with friends
2.  30 minutes of relaxation (Jeopardy)
3.  The brightness and warmth of sunshine at lunchtime
Although this practice certainly isn't a panacea for the ills of the world, it can help me stay focused on the goodness that comes my way, recognize my gratitude for the blessings in my life, and let go of some of the negativity that I seem to collect so easily.

In fact, I think I'll try it again tonight...

Inspired by Ima on (and off) the Bima, this post is one in a series marking the days of the Jewish month of Nissan leading up to Passover, which begins at sundown on Monday, 14 Nissan. If you want to play along, check out this year's #BlogExodus and #Exodusgram prompts.