REGISTER ONLINE TODAY - Live Educational Webinar on Bowen Family Systems Theory for Religious Leaders begins in late May 2021
1 Corinthians 12:12 reminds us: “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.” The daily lived reality as a religious leader also reminds us that the church is an emotional family system often filled with stress, anxiety, and conflict. Learn how Bowen Family Systems Theory can help you to understand the daily systematic realities that you face as well as empower and strengthen your call to ministry along with your capacity to serve others. Join the new Bowen Family Systems Theory Educational Group for Religious Leaders from the Religious Leadership Institute at the Center to Awaken Kindness. The group is open to religious leaders and seminary students from all faith traditions, those new and those with past experiences in Bowen Family Systems Theory.
What to expect...
In each session we will explore theory, share through student presentations, and have ample time for dialogue. Beginning in late May 2021, we will meet on Zoom 6 times for 2 hours each, over a 6 month period.
It is National Snack Day! Offer your Spirit a snack today March 4.
Take a minute or two and enjoy one of our #Mindful Moment Finger #Labyrinth Walks. Each is only about a minute long and features a time to #breakfree from the #stress and #anxiety of today and mindfully #calm down and imagine new possibilities.
Give your Spirit (and yourself) a break, enjoy…
Abound in #Hope
Full version on YouTube:
The 60 second version on TikTok:
Full version on YouTube:
The 60 second version on TikTok:
#BlackLivesMatter – Fill Me With Your #Justice
Full version on YouTube:
Full version on YouTube:
60 second version on TikTok:
Happy National Snack Day from Penny & Bill
Center to Awaken Kindness
#despair #hopelessness #loneliness #emptiness #stress #meaninglessness #guilt #condemnation #exhaustion The #anxieties of #life are very real – and no one is immune from having #anxiety that can create a #mindfog. At times, we all can feel like our head is somewhere else making it hard to focus on #life - let alone our #spiritual #self-care that can fill the #heart #mind #body #soul and relationships in new ways.
Life often runs us, rather than us having the #freedom to run our life. Each day multiple rituals are performed – from that #morning cup of #coffee to laying one’s head on the #pillow at night. These rituals are often done outside of #consciousness – yet they have a direct impact on the creation of anxiety. The gift is that we are in control of the rituals, not vice versa. Spiritual self-care invites the #exploration and #discovery of the rituals of life so that the rituals can be #transformed into #positive life-building possibilities rather than anxiety filled realities.
#Discover the beginnings of a new reality by practicing #contemplative expressions of spiritual self-care through prayer-filled #mindfulness. Prayer-filled mindfulness invites being creative, finding purpose, and discovering life as prayer. Yes, life as #prayer filled with rituals that #nourish the heart, mind, body, soul, and relationships in new ways. #Transform the daily rituals so that each is filled spiritually while providing a clear and #playful pathway that makes visible the #vitality of our individual and relational #sacred direction of life. How might we do this?
One way is to begin by practicing what we call a #Free Walk. The Free Walk is inspired by the spiritual practices of Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone (1182-1226), also known as Francis of Assisi from Italy. Like Francis’ life walk, the Free Walk mindful #journey invites an engagement of all five #senses with the #world around us. Free Walking can reconnect us with what is most #important in life. Walk with the Spirit and #imagine all the opportunities - then move toward those possibilities. Free Walking a labyrinth, mentally or with a finger, invites an immersion into the artistic path while imagining how your senses react (vision, smell, taste, touch, and sound). Bring to consciousness that which is not yet imagined - the insights and possibilities for minimizing anxiety in the daily rituals of life. Let’s try it out…
We #breathe all day long, so let’s begin our journey toward prayer-filled mindfulness by discovering the ritual of deep breathing. Breathe in slowly – hold a bit – breathe out slowly. Calm the mind and look around your space until you see something you were not previously #aware of – maybe a picture is askew, maybe a bird is in the tree outside - become aware of the space. Breathe in slowly – hold a bit – breathe out slowly. Close the eyes and calm the mind. #Imagine a most peaceful image – one from the past, one in the present, and one in the future. Breathe in slowly – hold a bit – breathe out slowly. Open the eyes and think about flowers. Yes, flowers. #Flowers have the ability to lift our spirits. This is especially true of the primrose flower that is featured on our Abound in Hope labyrinth. Let’s explore walking among primrose flowers…
Free walking along a path filled with primrose flowers invites hope filled happiness. We know that first-hand. It is exactly what happened as we walked among the tufted evening primroses (oenothera caespitosa) in the #Badlands National Park in South Dakota, USA. That experience inspired our Abound in Hope labyrinth design. We created it so that others could also be inspired by walking among tufted evening primrose flowers. Primrose flowers mark the arrival of spring helping folks to #connect to their true spiritual center that is #love – and with love is hope. The #labyrinth path offers a safe space to #unwind and become connected with the deep spirit within.
Freely walk the Abound in Hope labyrinth path, mentally or with a finger. Experience the #meditative Free Walk process of labyrinth walking as you create a #safe space for the #brain to unwind from the daily stressors and toward experiencing the #hope-filled #joy of life. Leave your #anxieties and #stresses outside of the path. Follow the path into the center of the basket freely and carefree. Stop a few times along the path to breathe deeply. In the center of the design, the middle of the basket, take a moment or two to imagine your senses being filled in a cheery, playful, and #creative way. #Reflect on the #inspirational scripture verse specifically chosen for the Abound in Hope design: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and #peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the #power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13). How does it feel to abound with hope? As you walk back out of the design think how to incorporate hope and love into the rituals of life – from that morning cup of coffee to that moment you lay your head onto the pillow at night. What one small #change can I make today? What does that look like? #Dream it - imagine it – live into it.
#Enjoy all the Abound in Hope labyrinth options including the Mindful Moment Labyrinth Walk videos on #YouTube #Vimeo and #TikTok Use an Abound in Hope Build-A-Journal, now on Amazon, to journal your discoveries as you freely walk the design. Spread some #positive #vibes by incorporating the labyrinth design into #daily life. Add some #vitality to your life and purchase a primrose #gift item today – maybe for #ValentinesDay or another #special occasion. Purchase and #enjoy an Abound in Hope art print, tote bag, rug, yoga mat, leggings, t-shirts, pillows, face masks and many other prayer-filled mindful self-care products now on #FineArtAmerica #RedBubble #Society6 and #TeePublic
Check out all the offerings at CenterToAwakenKindness.com and visit us on all the major social media networks @DaRevsUSA
Below are a few pictures from our travels at the #BadlandsNationalPark in #SouthDakota USA.
#HappyNewYear - #2021 brings forth #365 #new days! #Celebrate – Sh!t out - #Hope in - #Mindful #Moment Labyrinth #Walk - #Fear Not… Abound in Hope
#HappyNewYear - #2020 is finally coming to an end and #2021 brings forth 365 new days! The #newyear is a time to reflect and #hope in the future that is unfolding. When #despair rises through so many different forms – meaninglessness, guilt, condemnation, hopelessness, to name a few – we are invited to set new #goals and as 2021 appears to set a new #newyearsresolution – what does that look like? Find #purpose – discover #life as #prayer – and #explore the art quilt called life.
Make a #resolution and imagine #new possibilities – reflect, pray, and act in #new ways each day. “Walk” the Fear Not #Labyrinth that truly represents that “It’s become #sh!t in a handbasket.” But remember those words from scripture – all is not lost – each new day brings forth new #opportunities … “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).
AND there is more! Yes, abound in #hope – and do it #24/7/365 – every day and every way! Fear not… abound in hope! As Paul reminded the folks in Rome: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).
#goodbye2020 - #hello2021 – This #newyear make it a time to #love #hope #follow a #newyearsresolution that invites a #newyearscelebration – a #newyearsparty filled with #happiness #joy and sharing #kindness every day in new ways. #Imagine the possibilities! Come join the #celebration and #share the #goodnews
#HappyHolidays and #happynewyear2021 from Penny and Bill @DaRevsUSA
It’s time for joy! So where do we find #joy? Through #music and #singing a #happy song. In #walking a #labyrinth - being inspired and filled with #happiness by interacting with a joyful #labyrinth and enjoying the words #JoytotheWorld (such as through this Mindful Moment Labyrinth Walk short film, a gift for you from @DaRevsUSA). In the delight of receiving a #Christmascard from #family and friends. In a cup of #Christmastea or #eggnog - #sharing phone calls with #loved ones. By watching #nature and by being inspired by looking into the night sky for that #star that shines so brightly above. #Enjoying the smell of a #Christmastree and #playing in fresh #snow – don’t forget to make a few snow angels. #Celebrating the birth of #Jesus and remembering the steadfast love and #faithfulness of #God - wherever you find joy choose to share #Christmasjoy with the world, make a joyful #noise, share some #kindness and as always, we wish all a #Joyful Holiday Season! Have a safe and #blessed Christmas.
#MerryChristmas2020 from Penny and Bill @DaRevsUSA aka CenterToAwakenKindness.com
Wow - only 19 more days in #December 2020 !! Many of us will be #happy to see the year #2020 pass into the history #books . Yet future generations will be asking: “What was the #coronavirus pandemic of 2020 like and what did you do to get through it?”
My answer is - it was a hard time - one filled with great uncertainty. We washed our hands, we practiced #SocialDistancing , #StayAtHome and we #prayed .
Prayer and Difficulties. Throughout the pandemic many people shared with @DaRevsUSA that they increased their prayer lives. I clearly remember a distinguished #seminary professor sharing with his students that when times get really #stressful - an increase in prayer life is needed. Something I often did during seminary. One morning during the pandemic, I was sitting on my front porch praying to #God to help me through the #difficulties , the uncertainty of these times. Then the words came to my mind… “Fill Me” – fill me with your #peace , #fill me with your #love , fill me with your #kindness . The prayer continued to grow to other areas in my life that needed to be filled. I soon found God filling me with the words for a #meditative prayer that became the Fill Me Prayer Book. It is a prayer that can support and help when facing life transitions.
#PrayerChangesThings . Prayer is a powerful tool that can hold us together and center us. It can calm our inner #soul opening us to new understandings. Prayer is particularly important when transitioning through difficult times such as #COVID-19 , #unemployment , concerns for #children or #elderly #family members, and more. Simply put, having a #prayerful life opens the reality of the #sacred in each moment. Prayer can and does change things.
#Spiritual . I wrote the Fill Me Prayer Book, a #mindfulness #devotional #meditative prayer experience complete with finger labyrinths, to help with walking through life during difficult challenges. While writing this book something spiritual happened – I began meditating on the words of the prayer, contemplating #scripture, and walking the #labyrinth #art designs with my fingers – as I did, I became much more peaceful, #calm , centered and I began to #listen to God in a deeper way. I was able to begin seeing the sacred in the moment.
#InnerPeace . It is a wonderful experience to #meditate on the words of God and experience God’s peace in our life. God is with us through all the trials of life. God will continue to help us through great times of tribulation. Let us all push forward with a #HappyNewYearResolution for #2021 – to pray more and to share #kindness .
How have you gotten through 2020? Share it with us, @DaRevsUSA
@DaRevsUSA – Penny & Bill
Where’s the kindness this Christmas season? No doubt - kindness often disappears at #Christmas-time. But it can be so much more. Don’t be a #humbug this Christmas season – destress and discover kindness! Christmas-time is a great time to #awaken to God’s loving kindness. To ponder the story about that first Christmas, the loving kindness that was made visible through the birth of #Jesus the Christ in the manger. Yes, our world can seem a bit dark at times, but scripture invites us to be the #light and to share loving kindness with each other – one person at a time.
Each day life experiences and meaning making structures are stitched together by time and space. Like a quilt being sewn together, our life #quilt is being created, adding to the story of life, our life, stitch by stitch. We invite you to #share kindness this Christmas and create a beautiful life quilt.
This is the perfect time of the year to Discover #XMAS, aka Christmas with our Build-A-Journals (3 sizes with 5 inside page options) and #mindful fun gifts for self and others. Give kindness this year - find us on Amazon, RedBubble, Society6, TeePublic, and Fine Art America.
Peace & Kindness this Christmas Season,
Penny & Bill
DaRevsUSA – Doctors of the Soul
Happy #WorldKindnessDay Yes! It is today. An international holiday founded in 1998 to promote kindness throughout the #world. #Kindness is a basic human need that we all have. To celebrate we re-release our Call Labyrinth from 2002. ‘Walk’ and reflect on kindness, reach out and #phone someone – or send a card, a #text, an #email – make kindness visible every day. Try a #smallactofkindness today - it just might make a BIG difference in someone’s life.
Never #walked a #labyrinth – try it today! “Walk” in and out of the design mentally or with a finger. As you walk in #contemplate on scripture (below) and #think about kindness. In the center, #meditate and #listen to God’s #grace from deep within – what types of kindness can you #share today? As you walk out imagine sharing kindness with the world today and everyday.
Some facts: The Call Labyrinth was created in 2002. It is intentionally black and white - you with God’s grace bring color into life. Three clouds at the bottom represent the #Trinity. Seven rays of sunshine represent seven days of #creation. As you pass the mouthpiece think about your #Godwalk and #Godtalk. Listen for God’s grace in the center earpiece of the design. The inspirational scripture for this labyrinth: "He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do #justice, and to love kindness, and to #walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6:8
Peace & Kindness to you on this #WorldKindnessDay !
~ Penny and Bill
VOTE – Be Counted! Take a ‘walk’ to enhance active awareness while discovering the significance of the sacred ritual of voting. Voting as a sacred ritual invites active participation in life and the recognition that renewal and a new reality is not only possible but part of our human experience. Mindfully walk the sacred path of the VOTE – Be Counted. Be sure to VOTE and encourage others to do the same! Voting is a sacred ritual that is more than a mere behavior that a politician can purchase with ad space or rallies. It is active participant in a ritual process that brings forth a new reality by your action, your vote.
Come and join together on the journey by “walking” the VOTE – Be Counted Labyrinth. Make voting part of the art quilt called life. Experience this digital art quilt labyrinth walk video to discover the art quilt of life. Contemplate scripture. Walk a labyrinth. Invoke the Spirit inviting action. This VOTE – Be Counted digital art quilt labyrinth walk experience was created by Bill Ressl at the Center to Awaken Kindness – for information on other items in our VOTE – Be Counted mindful practice line and on all our items that encourage discovery of the art quilt of life please visit our homepage.
Also, please be sure to vote – some resources below…
MAKE A PLAN TO VOTE
Check Your Voter Registration: Each state has different rules for voter registration. Visit the Our Faith Our Vote Action Center to make sure you’re registered: https://p2a.co/zv3KyiE
DETERMINE HOW YOU WILL VOTE
Mail-In Ballots: If you can, request a mail-in ballot. Each state has different deadlines different times for early voting, check it now at: https://www.usa.gov/election-office
In Person Voting: If you are going to vote in person find your polling place by using the link below. Make a safety plan with a mask, gloves, sanitizer and other protection. Check on the location of your polling place. Decide when and for whom you are going to vote for. Polling place information at: https://www.vote.org/polling-place-locator/
PROTECT YOUR RIGHT TO VOTE
Save the Election Protection Hotline in your phone or write it down so if you encounter problems with voting you are ready: 866-OUR-VOTE ((866) 687-8683) or for State by State Election Protection Contacts: https://866ourvote.org/state/
GET OTHERS INVOLVED and SHARE THAT YOU VOTED … Join the United Church of Christ (UCC) in celebrating the VOTE… A Just World for All >> Our Faith our Vote Templates | FREE Digital Download:
Our faith is one of the reasons we vote. Sharing our values and priorities through voting and advocacy is part of our charge to “make disciples of all nations.” Show your support for Our Faith Our Vote by sharing your reason for voting and posting it on social media
Other resources at: https://www.ucc.org/ourfaithourvote
Practice active awareness with the VOTE - Be Counted design on these items... wall art, clothing, and home accessories (all available through TeePublic)
#ItsMyVote #vote #vote2020 #election2020 #election #voteearly #IVoted #IVotedEarly #YoVote #GOTV #voting #electionday #democracy #voterrights #votebymail #activism #racialjustice #economicjustice #spiritualmaturity #TheUCCVotes #UCCVotamos #loveislove #blacklivesmatter #blm #savetheearth #votersuppression #equality #civilrights #freedom #electionfraud #news
Happy #SweetestDay! Yes, today is Sweetest Day, a day to share acts of #kindness with others and to see the kindness of the Spirit all around - and as we did when we saw this fawn and it’s mother in the yard of our urban hermitage. Sweetest Day is a celebration that falls during the third week in October. History tells us that this holiday dates to late 1916 when it was known as Candy Day. Although other reports claim it started in the early 1920’s. The official unofficial first #Sweetest Day began in Cleveland, Ohio on October 10, 1921. It was planned by confectioners and candy makers with a goal to serve orphans, the poor, and older folks.
Regardless of its history, the main point of Sweetest Day is to share acts of love and #kindness with others. Let’s enjoy this Sweetest Day by being #generous in a small or big way with others. How? #Pray for someone. #Give a small gift. Write a poem for someone special. Give the gift of kindness to yourself by posting some sweet memories in a journal. Give someone a #smile by saying: “Happy Sweetest Day!” in person or online. Share the gift of #joy and #love by letting others know: “I Love You!” For more ideas on sharing kindness and celebrating Sweetest Day visit our Sharing Kindness Page.
And remember, Sweetest Day, like every day, is a day to #celebrate kindness. Please accept this post as a wish of love for a Happy Sweetest Day celebration from us! We also invite you to #share your Sweetest Day story of kindness with us at our Share a Story Page
Welcome! We are Penny and Bill. We invite you to join in the journey of awakening kindness in the world. Our goal in our blog is to encourage you to take time to think, reflect, and define your personal theology of kindness (your God talk) and make it visible in the world (your God walk).
On a Mission to Awaken Kindness through God's Transformative Power of Love
Rev. Dr. Bill Ressl, LCSW and Rev. Dr. Penny Taylor, LCSW are also known as DaRevsUSA. Center to Awaken Kindness is a division of the Penny & Bill Company, Brookfield, IL USA a faith-based corporation.
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JOIN US @DaRevsUSA