Get Your Shine On!!!

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As a child, I spent a lot of time in church. Pretty much any time the doors were open at Mimosa Heights Christian Church, you could find our family front pew and center. As a single mom, I think my mother thought it one way to keep her brood of four off the streets and out of trouble. During the summer, I always looked forward to the weeklong vacation bible school (VBS) at Mimosa Heights. There were always the refreshments of Kool-Aid and store-bought cookies, that, back then represented delicious fare to my young taste buds, as these weren’t items my Mom regularly (read almost never) bought.

Also, there was the “country store,” little more than a Sunday-school room stocked with unwanted items members of the church brought from their basements, attics and garages. In order to earn bible bucks to spend in the store, one had to memorize and recite certain bible verses. I became a machine at memorizing and delivering these refrains. I must admit that it wasn’t so much my love of the sweet psalms or the desire to ramp up my credit with the big guy that spurred my memorization prowess. In actuality, I loved having big bible bucks to spend at the country store. I was a high roller. Some of the other bible-schoolers even asked me a time or two if I could hook them up with some bible-cash. I can’t remember if I passed around my bible-bucks abundance, but I do remember that my Mother became exasperated with the amount of junk that I brought home, so much so that she forbid me from buying any more items. If memory serves, at that point my memorization dropped off severely with her imposed country-store-buying moratorium.

The singing at VBS represented another aspect of the program that I LOVED. Though I didn’t/don’t have a fantastic voice, I used to belt out, with gusto, the songs sung at the beginning and end of the day’s program. One song in particular that I still remember and hum from time to time is “This Little Light of Mine.” The refrain goes something like this:

This little light of mine

I’m gonna let it shine

This little light of mine

I’m gonna let it shine Let it shine, let it shine, all the time.

Hide it under a bush, oh no,

I’m gonna let it shine

Hide it under a bush, oh no,

I’m gonna let it shine Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine all the time

I now teach yoga, and at last night’s class, during the ending meditation, I reminded my students to remember their radiance, to go deep within themselves and recall their true essence of beauty, brightness and light. As I led the meditation, those days of singing at summer VBS came drifting across my consciousness, specifically singing the song This Little Light of Mine. This recollection made me smile as I realized this child’s song really embodied so much wisdom.

If we could all remember our inner light and let it shine for the entire world to see, how much brighter humanity could be. So many times, for so many reasons, we choose not to shine – sometimes out of fear, sometimes from simply forgetting who we really are. I challenge you all today to take some time out of your busy day to quiet your mind and choose to seek out your radiance that resides deep within EVERYONE and then let that luminosity shine like a beacon from inside of you. When you remember your genuine self, which is light, love, joy and abundance, you give others around you permission to shine and remember as well. It’s a domino effect that heals not only yourself, but also your family, your community and ultimately the world. When you shine, you heal, uplift and inspire everyone with whom you come into contact. So as the song says, get your shine on. Don’t hide it under a literal or metaphorical bush.

Be an inspiration for others and light up the world! Let your little light shine. Keep Shining. Peace Out!

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