“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence.”
~Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese Buddhist monk and peace activist

Happy Holidays to each one of you! This year has presented many challenges as we celebrate traditions, holidays, and significant milestones in our lives and the lives of our families and friends. Re-imagining how to celebrate while staying healthy and safe has created sadness, disappointment and stress for many. I realize this. It’s affected me and my family too. I found that I had to remain open to and accept a new way of experiencing the holidays. I also had to let go of the past and “what was” before I could enjoy something different and new.

Remaining healthy was key to each of my family members. In some ways I feel we had a deeper connection finding meaningful ways to be present to one another instead of meeting in person. I found so much acceptance, joy, and gratitude for the many blessings in my life on Christmas morning. In the past we’ve usually been hustling and bustling with gift opening and preparing food to take to a family gathering. 

My husband and I began Christmas morning by sitting in front of the fireplace, enjoying the lights on our Christmas tree and we reflected on years past with gratitude. Being present to each other in this way touched both of our hearts! We’ve never enjoyed this time in the same way. Later we enjoyed a lovely meal together and connected with friends and family members through phone calls, texts, and FaceTime during the day. Technology can be wonderful!

The way we celebrated this year was so special and yet very different. For some reason it felt more intentional as we re-imagined how we would celebrate and feel the holiday spirit. Finding new organizations to support the hungry and suffering came from our hearts due to the crisis created by the pandemic in addition to the ones we usually support. Denzel Washington, Actor, director, and producer reminds us that, “at the end of the day it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. . . It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better, it’s about what you’ve given back.” Although physical gifts weren’t exchanged with our family and friends, in most cases, we received so much love, hope, kindness, acceptance, and joy. The value of these gifts are priceless. I know that we lifted one another up in ways that were unexpected. I hope your re-imagined celebrations touched your hearts in the way ours did.

I realize that it’s not things that matter. It’s what we freely give of ourselves to one another. Giving from your heart and not out of duty or obligation makes a difference. Mother Teresa also known as St. Teresa of Calcutta and the Founder of Missionaries of Charity reminds us that, “It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into the giving.” You matter and gifts from your heart that are given with love are priceless! I’m sending lots of love to each one of you! You matter to me and I’m grateful for your presence.

My January group Zoom channeling sessions with Luminus and the Messengers of Light will be offered on Tuesday, January 12th and 26th. Please register to join us from 2p-3:30p AZ/MTN and if you would like to connect with me or schedule a private session please go to victoriabarna.com.