Here’s part three of ‘In Dark Times, Shine’ albeit slightly delayed. If you wanted to recap the earlier parts, please see here for part 1 about your distinctiveness, and here for part two about empowerment.
So, here’s part three: In Dark Times, Shine: And…Action.
We do live in dark times. There are those around us who need spiritual-liberating, to be freed from their ‘prisons’ to enable them to be the person that are destined to be, and you could probably be, probably are going to be instrumental (along with others, perhaps) in that mission.
Whether you’re a latter-day Celt, a Christian Celt, a Druid or of some other faith or tribe, we all need to ‘shine’ and work for the good – in small ways and large, wherever we are.
This is not to heap so much responsibility on you that you’re actively thinking of how to work with millions of people and losing sleep about it – but it’s about working with those you encounter today. Just a few people. Just a small number of loving actions. Not a chore. Not a bore. But, a joy. Not counting how well we’ve done, and not keeping score, but doing what you and I believe we’re called to do in the moment, and feeling good about it (although it may appear as energy leaving you and prompt feelings of tiredness).
Now that you know that you’re called to do something that only you can do in a unique way, and now that you know that you have been granted the power and energy to do it, what do you do? It’s all about action.
A clue to what we’re meant to do could be where we’re located and what you like doing – your giftedness, what is on your heart, and the circumstances you find yourself in.
‘Do not despise these small beginnings…’ Zechariah 4:10a, The Book
The Source Of All is quite clever (an understatement, of course, but then I’m British) at arranging all this, and providing opportunities for you to be active. Ah, synchronicity!
I know some who are placed in rural areas, others who live in huge cities, and others whose work takes them to wild places. Wherever you are, this could be an indication of what you might consider doing.
‘Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can’. Arthur Ashe
Jeremy works at a local store in a large town. It is his job to work at the check-out counter, and his gift is that of listening. He always greet customers with a hearty smile, and will always listen to them. When he only has one customer he will strike up a conversation, and always be encouraging. His gift of listening, really listening, and of encouragement is able to be exercised through his regular job.
Zoe lives in a rural area. She loves the countryside, and her part time job is that of an administrator in a nearby village. At other times, she gives guided tours around the countryside and places of interest, and in this way hopes to encourage others to take an interest in the environment, and animal and tree preservation. She feels her gift is to give knowledge to others about rural life and ecological protection.
Where you are may be an indication of what you’re called to do, and where action can take place. Does this apply to you?
Sometimes, just being in a place, and just showing up is enough!
You may be accomplished at something – have a gift and/or have spent some time studying (and rememeber, it is never to late to start studying or enrolling on a course of somekind), and this, too, could be an indication of what action you can take.
‘We are all gifted. That is our inheritance.’ Ethel Water
We cannot be masters of everything, but each one of us has a unique gift (or several), and it can be used to allow us to be who we are, and be used to build up others, also.
Sarah is a wonderful musician. She used to work as a curator at a local museum, and then concentrated on her music. Her full-time job became part-time as the music (joyfully) took up more of her time, and then latterly her full-time work (if you can call it work) is her music! Her gift is to entertain people and sometimes to move them deeply in matters of the spirit through music.
Sam is a dextrous man. By trade his work is a plumber. By day he works ‘solving’ plumbing problems, repairing leaks etc, and an assortment of other activities associated with plumbing. His gift is that practicality! Most evenings he and his house-bound wife spend some time in praying, sending out positive-thoughts, good-wishes, wholesome rituals etc (using the caim form of ‘enacted’ prayer, sometimes) for ecologically sensitive areas of the world, for wildlife preservation, for war-torn area of the world, famine areas, as well as for their local area and family and friends. They wanted to do something together, something that could be done from their small home. They believe this work to be vital. It is.
I know some wonderful musicians, others who are dextrous with their hands, others are authors, and others who are encouragers, and am in awe as they use their gift for others. Sometimes, I wish I had half of their talent, only to stop those thoughts in their track and realise that I, too, have a unique gift that they don’t possess. And you have a unique gift (and some lesser gifting’s in other areas) that others might envy (in a nice way), too. Use your gift(s), enhance it by practice, enjoy it, use it for the benefit of others. Does this apply to you?
In small ways, in seemingly random events that happen during the day, in large ways and small, you might find yourself interacting with people, and being able to offer assistance. Of course, it depends on the event and your giftedness. But, there will be ways that you can use your gift (and you may have other major gifts and a host of minor gifts – so never back off of an action by disqualifying yourself). ‘Random’ events might be just what the Source Of All has arranged for you to encounter the person who needs to hear from you, to meet and interact with you, to be ministered to, by you!
I’ve always been in the right place and time. Of course, I steered myself there.’ Bob Hope [Or, did he steer himself there?]
Of course, your gift(s) may be something that needs some ‘diarising’ and planning, and that too, can allow you to serve others. I know accomplished energy-workers who have clients that benefit from their services. Others who organise ceremonies and rituals for individuals and families etc. Others who play and sing in faith group assemblies and clubs – all ways of being wonderfully active in building up others and themselves, too.
Whatever your gifting(s) are, do use them. Don’t disqualify yourself. Ofcourse, I’m not encouraging you to ‘bite off more than you can chew’, and to always have a healthy balance, but it’s within your scope of capability and it wont offend others by ‘stepping on their toes’, then do it. You may not be able to do everything – infact you won’t be able to! Once, again the Source Of All has it all worked out. It’s quite clever: We need each other.
‘Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.’ Henry Ford
We are called to action, and within the framework of team work. After leading a funeral. someone said to me, ‘Tadhg, thank you for doing that. I couldn’t have done it’, only for me to respond by telling them how naturally they served me in other areas , in areas I couldn’t excel in, and how that also encouraged me! I only say this because I’m sure the same has happened to you.
We need each other. Whether your gift is practical, artistic, active, passive, if you’re an author (or a potential author), a musician, a Celtic or Druidic ceremonialist, a light-worker, energy-worker, an administrator, a cleaner, a plumber, mechanic, be the best you can be, and ‘do it’. This is your time to shine.
‘I am only one, but I am one. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will’. Edward Everett Hale
Oh, I nearly forgot to mention (again) the wonderful story about the child and the starfish: see here.
[PS: Any names used, apart from my own, have been changed, and anecdotes about other people were used with permission].