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Control-Alt-Delete (often abbreviated to Ctrl+Alt+Del, also known as the “three-finger salute” or “Security Keys”) is a computer keyboard command on IBM PC compatible computers, invoked by pressing the Delete key while holding the Control and Alt keys: Ctrl+Alt+Delete. The function of the key combination differs depending on the context but it generally interrupts or facilitates interrupting a function.” (Wikipedia, emphasis added)

The hells run pretty rampant in my mind, sometimes – do they for you, too? Sometimes I feel like I’ve got a pretty good handle on them, but other times they’re on a roll, they catch me at every corner! They are incredibly cunning. They know where my weaknesses are, which is no surprise considering that’s their job – no, their passion. This is all part of regeneration, of course: gotta face those temptations over and over and over again, in finer and finer detail, until eventually we overcome them! And then we get to move on to another….

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could stop the hells short, halt them mid-temptation and just be done with that trial? Oooh, to have a Ctrl+Alt+Del on those hells…. I’d like to interrupt their function, that’s for sure.

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Not Fair

Life isn’t fair. 

How many people relate to this? All of us? On a global scale it sure isn’t fair: massive inequality, poverty, war, distaters, disease. Some children go to bed hungry while others are fed, some families grow up safe and sheltered from war while others do not, some people face crippling disabilities or illnesses while others live life in strong, healthy bodies. 

In my world the playing field is a bit more level: we can all afford a warm place to sleep, plenty of food, clean water, education, and a certain standard of safety. But still things aren’t “fair”. Why does one couple struggle with fertility while another conceives child after child? Why do some people find their forever partner while others keep searching? Why does one family suffer a devastating car accident? Why must some battle to stick to a budget while others suffer no anxiety over the price of groceries? Why is she facing depression, and why is he recovering from trauma, when the next person over is doing neither? And on and on.

Life isn’t fair. And sometimes I have an easier time accepting this. Right now is not one of the easy times. Maybe because in the last year, between the pandemic, anxiety, and social unrest right around me, these unfairnesses feel closer. Maybe I’ve just seen more hard things happening to people I love lately. Maybe both. And maybe the Lord is calling my attention to how much it’s not about fairness, at least not fairness in this world. 

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Being Grateful For Our Blessings


It’s a trait that is associated with happy, successful and wealthy people all over the world. 

But what exactly is gratitude? 

I’m not talking about the definition. Sure, it’s good to be grateful, but what does it look like to live a grateful life? What does it feel like? Is it a peaceful warmth that floods your chest? Is it where the voice in your head that says: “Do more – NOW” goes quiet? Is it the subtle confidence that things will work out? Gratitude plays a large role in a new area of psychology called positive psychology. From my experience in psychology along with my foundation in New Church teachings, I can see a connection: there is an underlying spiritual foundation that supports many of these concepts. Accordingly, I was excited to see how gratitude could be applied to my life. Of course, you don’t become grateful overnight. It takes months of patience and practice and, even then, everyone has their ups and downs. A great way to start out is by turning to the Word, but just sitting and reading all the time left me restless. I wanted to take action!

About four years ago, I experimented with practicing gratefulness every day.   

It was much harder than I anticipated.

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It is about to happen. Our eldest, first to leave, is heading off to college. Someone just said to me (as was told to them when their first departed) that it is like taking your arm, cutting it off, and sending it away. I am really feeling this. Of course it is natural and right for children to grow, leave, learn to become useful adults, and eventually start their own families. Of course this is what we have always wanted for our children. The reality of it happening is still feeling like something breaking. I think it might feel like how regeneration can feel. We need to ask the Lord to take pieces of us and push them away or to the sides so we can improve and become better. It is a healthy progression, but it still hurts. I can’t wait to see what each of our children will do with their lives, families and many uses. I just hope that we have provided them with good tools for these new uses. 

“There are two states that man must enter upon and pass through, when from being natural he is becoming spiritual. The first state is called Reformation, and the second Regeneration. In the first man looks from his natural to his spiritual state and longs for that state; in the second state he becomes spiritual-natural. The first state is formed by means of truths, which must be truths of faith, and through these he looks to charity; the second state is formed by means of the goods of charity, and by these he enters into the truths of faith. Or what is the same, the first is a state of thought from the understanding, and the second a state of love from the will. When this latter state begins and is progressing, a change takes place in the mind; the mind undergoes a reversal, the love of the will then flowing into the understanding, acting upon it and leading it to think in accord and agreement with its love; and in consequence so far as the good of love comes to act the first part and the truths of faith the second, man is spiritual and is a new creature; and he then acts from charity and speaks from faith; he feels the good of charity and perceives the truth of faith; and he is then in the Lord, and in peace, and thus regenerate.” True Christian Religion 571

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