Rev. E. Ann Otzelberger, NST, NSAC Trustee, New Vision Spiritualist Center, Orlando, FL

Good morning, well it is December.

There are only 9 more shopping days till Christmas and that includes today, next Sunday and Christmas Eve.  We must HURRY, HURRY.

The bargains will be gone.  Everything will be picked over and you will not possibly be able to find the correct sizes or colors of anything.

Are the out of town packages in the mail? Are the Holiday cards ready to go? You really must hurry or they cannot possibly be there on time.  There are so many things to do with the shopping, baking, decorating and please don’t forget your Great Aunt this year.

Yes, it is that time of year again, “Heckticksville”, when there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done.  The clocks have cut our daylight time shorter and our lists of “things to do” have gotten much longer.  Add to this the holiday season of extended working hours and you have the clear picture of good old hometown, Heckticksville.

Now, you maybe wondering what all this has to do with Spiritualism, but isn’t our religion our way of life?  And we just can’t leave the whole month of December out of it.  We cannot partition off an area where our lives are good and our intent the best for all, from another area that these intentions would be out of place.  It is so easy to feel our religion here, where everyone is concerned for each other and all try to work in harmony.  It is another thing when we are at work Monday morning and the first person to walk through the door is the “Class A” Troublemaker and they jump on us with both feet.   And so heckticksville also joins our lives.

Patience is required at this time of the year perhaps more than any other.  When we venture out to do our shopping we find the traffic heavy and slow at best.  We wait through light after light to make that left hand turn and always manage to get behind the “Nervous Nellie” who just will not go unless there is enough room for three cars to make it.

Parking is always a problem and when we spot the perfect parking place and head for it, someone gets there just before us, or there is a tiny sports car, totally out of view until we get right on it, taking the entire parking space, when it would have fit on the sidewalk.

We finally make it inside after walking the full length of the shopping center and head for our favorite shop where we saw the perfect shirt we wanted just the other day, but didn’t have time to get it then.  Of course, it is gone and there is not another one like it unless you could settle for three sizes too large.  So you settle for the wine color instead of the blue you really liked.  Now you start your slow progression in the line to the check out.  Here you soon realize that the line is taking much longer than you thought and then you see….the clerk waiting on this line is new….it is her first day to work on HER OWN.

Patience is not the only or even the best remedy for every trouble or problem that comes along, but in such situations as these, it is truly a virtue worth possessing.  Life is what we make it.  It can be tolerable or it can be beautiful.

Patience is one of the biggest lessons in life and it seems we just cannot afford to be with out it.

We will make mistakes and we will pay the price for them.  we should learn from them.  we came into this world to make mistakes; if we were perfect we would not be where we are now today.

All error must be seen as growth towards good.  We are part of an all-knowing mind.  All things are possible in our lives.  All obstacles are stepping stones of experience leading into a brighter life.  They are necessary for our growth.  Can we know our strength if we do not see a weakness?

We must learn and in learning we will grow, evolve, develop and unfold.  Life is not a constant movement upward and we do seem to regress at times.

We must persevere.   Remember what Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said, “Perseverance is a great element of success.  If you knock long enough and loud enough at the gate, you are sure to wake up somebody.”

We must persevere, remember there are only 9 days left. And it is so difficult to get in the Holiday Mood with warm weather.

Remember good deeds, kind thoughts, words and actions towards others will never be regretted.  And likely as not, neither will such deeds bring you the slightest pain or cost you more than a moment of your time.

What, of all things in the world is the longest and the shortest, the swiftest and the slowest, the most divisible and the most extended, the most neglected and the most regretted, without which nothing can be done, which devours all that is little, and enlivens all that is good?

The answer is TIME.

Nothing is longer, since it is the measure of eternity.  Nothing is shorter, since it is insufficient for the accomplishment of your projects. Nothing is more slow to him that expects; nothing is more rapid to him that enjoys.

In the greatness it extends to infinity, in smallness it is infinitely divertible.  All men neglect it; all regret the loss of it; nothing can be done without it.  It consigns to oblivion whatever is unworthy of being transmitted to posterity, and it immortalizes such actions as are truly great.

Time is one of man’s most priceless assets.

Patience and time is the foundation for success.  We are responsible for patience and understanding  with each other.  We must learn to be patient with our selves.

Few of us possess an impersonal view of ourselves so we can see the causes of our misjudgments.  If we did the problem would have been avoided in the first place.

Sometimes the situation gets out of focus and we don’t think clearly.  We take on more problems than the particular situation actually merits.  Even with all our modern systems and convinces of our life styles. We find it difficult to look at our problem squarely and face stressful situations directly.

To conquer any situation we must learn to be patient, to give ourselves a chance to find the correct way of handling our problems.

Some things are beyond our control, such as the slow new check out girl.  We must learn to have patience and make the best of the situation.

The most important task in life is to learn how to live.  That is, how to Live So as to make the most and best out of the opportunities life affords.  As a Spiritualist we give purpose to our lives because we build it for tomorrow.

All things of the daily life and activities are to be lived.  We want to make a place in our lives for all which is in accord with the goodness of life.

We are in tune daily with those in the unseen side of life.  They work constantly to assist us in our daily routine.

Lord Chesterfield said, “Know the true value of time, snatch, seize and enjoy every moment of it.  No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination.  Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.”

Andrew Jackson Davis said, “Growth begins with balance.  We must strive to keep our physical, mental and spiritual houses in perspective thus giving proper due to the true value of life.”

Each day brings new opportunity, and growth.  But often it accompanies trial and pain.  We must learn to keep everything in tune. To keep emotions free of high points and low depression.  We must learn the importance of taking one day at a time and living it fully.

Meditation helps keep the proper balance in all things of life, particularly when one begins and ends his day on a note of simple, but godly contemplation.  Pausing during these few moments slows everything down and gives order where problems once reigned.

Meditation even guides us into a better understanding of ourselves. It frees us of false realities and puts things in order.

It never hurts to talk about things even if we must commit ourselves.  Action without purpose or plan breeds failure and contempt. So give each side of your daily life its due, set time for the spiritual values, find enjoyment in the physical activities of life and put them in proper perspective through meditation.

I always talk about things that concern me or that I find myself involved in, so you know the kind of situation I am in right now.  So if you join me or are just a spectator, remember, patience, balance, meditation, a kind  word or thought.  Oh sweet December, you only happen once a year, and there are only 9 days left before Christmas!