Thursday, January 1, 2015

Spiritual Journey Thursday - LIGHT in the New Year

     I look forward to Thursdays when I can publish thoughts on my spiritual journey and hear the thoughts of others on a weekly theme topic.  It has become a space for an encouraging and fortifying community to come together.  We welcome anyone who would like to join us!
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. - 1 John 1:7
It is amazing to me that 2014 has come to an end, and a new year has begun.  Even though 2014 was filled with wonderful journeys for my family and me (with a few bumps in the road), the world seemed to plunge into darkness many times.  That why, when I read this Kidblog post by one of my 6th grade students, Ellie, on Christmas morning, I chose the theme topic LIGHT for the beginning of this new year:

For Christmas, I have gotten many gifts, but one of my favorites has been the book 365 Days Of Wonder by R. J. Palacio.  I have already started it and found a lot of good precepts. Today, I am going to write about what today’s precept is. ” A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows. – St. Francis of Assisi” I think that this precept was chosen because Jesus was sent down to Earth today, the single sunbeam, and he was known as the light in the dark because he drew away many shadows, like sin. I think that the song ” How Many Kings ” by Downhere describes how Jesus was the only king who came down to save sinners, yet he did so much change.
“How many kings, stepped down from their thrones?
How many lords have abandoned their homes?
How many greats have become the least for me?
How many Gods have poured out their hearts
To romance a world that has torn all apart?
How many fathers gave up their sons for me?
Only one did that for me

All for me
All for you
All for me
All for you”

This song, I think, discloses this precept perfectly because it talks about, although Jesus was perfect, how one light pushes away the bad in the world, and you could do good in the world yourself. Take the opportunity to do good things, even when no one backs you up or believes in you. Your life can impact others.

Isn't that wonderful?!  She and many of the students I know live by this philosophy every day.  I only hope that people in this oftentimes dark world can do the same!  We can only be this LIGHT if we focus on and reflect the true LIGHT of the world, Jesus Christ.

Happy New Year to all the Spiritual Journey Thursday readers and writers!  May you be the LIGHT in the world.

A new idea was born today as I read blog posts in this community and others about One Little Words.  There are several sources for the One Little Word.  You can read about it here, or here, or here.  Many of these OLWs are perfect for spiritual thinking.  I am making a schedule as contributors let me know what date/OLW they're choosing.  I will still host the link up post and will write about that topic, but I'll be featuring the person and his/her blog and OLW for that week, and others can reflect on that OLW and link up.  Here is what we have so far:
JANUARY 8th:  Holly Mueller's OLW, FOCUS (I will write more about how I chose it in Tuesday's Slice of Life)
JANUARY 15th:  Carol Varselona's OLW, LISTEN
JANUARY 22nd: Michelle Haseltine's OLW, FLY
JANUARY 29th: Leigh Anne Eck's OLW, TURN
FEBRUARY 5th: Margaret Simon's OLW, REACH
FEBRUARY 12th: Justin Stygles's OLW, LOOK
FEBRUARY 19th: Greg Armamentos's OLW, DIVE
FEBRUARY 26th: Ramona Behnke's OLW, STRETCH 
Let me know if you'd like for us to write about YOUR OLW in 2015, and I'll add you to the schedule.  For any blank weeks, I'll choose another topic. Happy New Year!
UPDATE as of 2:00 pm on Jan. 1st.  We have all the initial slots filled, with newcomer, Justin Stygles joining the Spiritual Journey Thursday community!!  If you would like your OLW as a theme topic beyond Feb. 19th, just let me know what Thursday you would like, your blog link, and what your OLW is.  I'm really excited about this and can't wait to learn more about your OLWs for the year, and how they relate to your spiritual journeys and ours!


  1. Holly, Ellie's Kidblog post is quite good and on target. It is true that we can only light the path for others if we FOCUS on and reflect the light of Christ. He is the candle in the darkness that leads our way. (By the way, I see you slipped in your OLW, FOCUS, which I happen to think is a fine one for this year.) Thank you for lighting our way this year with your singular focus of offering a pathway for our community to express what lies ahead in each of our spiritual journeys. Today is the the day to start anew!

  2. You have a special student there, a deep thinker. Blogging helps us to see our students in a more personal way. You have opened a door where your students feel comfortable writing and revealing themselves.
    I will take Feb. 5th with my OLW, Reach. I wrote about it today. Happy New Year!

  3. Holly, I adore that song and I've never seen this live version. Thank you!! I had no idea that LIGHT would fit so perfectly for me today. As I read your post, I used a similar quote from St. Francis in my writing. WOW! I love learning from sixth graders. :) Happy New Year!!!

  4. What beautiful words from your student and what a challenge for us to be that light on here Earth.
    Here is my new spiritual journey home. It is still a work in progress but it is launched!

  5. Such wonderful words from your student, Holly. So insightful!! Wishing you a wonderful new year full of lots of light!

    Sweet Writing Life

  6. Oops. Forgot to include my word. It's confidence.

  7. Your husband was right. These are the things to FOCUS on when times get tough. What light. What love. Thank you for sharing it.