Updated: Apr 23
April 20, 2020
2020 started off with a huge anticipation of promise for exciting, happy, adventurous, and wonderful times ahead. Or so I thought. I shared stories on social media of my last decade being a time filled with harsh and challenging experiences. Harsh in the sense of over consuming me with health and one trying personal relationship. Yet, I'm grateful that I have an understanding these difficult times and the last decade was a mix of good and bad to make me the person I am today. It has been a spiritual journey, a self awareness to personal growth. As I was contemplating the new year and asking myself how do I say goodbye to the last decade and hello to the new one a particular photo caught my eye. It was a series of photos that a friend and photographer took of me, a few of them looking very Terminator like. Meaning giving an air of Linda Hamilton from the actual Terminator movie. This inspired me to write with this as my theme, and I even joked and made references to the fact that in the movie Hamilton worked as a waitress in a restaurant just like me!
The new decade started for me with such joy and jubilation about the hopes ahead and the pains put behind me as lessons. My faith felt rocky in a few of those years, and I was comforted to know God loved me all along and wasn’t making my life hard, but more meaningful and deeper in His honor.
Yet, 2020's joyous feelings came to a fast crash for me. First it started off with a huge hint of darkness from the wildfires in Australia. If you know me, you know I absolutely love animals and this fire was cruel and beyond belief or imaginable. Such innocent and precious lives of animals killed or suffering. To me, it was a witness of hell on earth and my heart hurt so much and my small donations didn’t seem just, yet, I was trying. You see, having my own pets and home responsibilities, I couldn’t afford more, but along with prayer I wanted to give something monetary. I prayed and hoped for solutions and my heart found solace in the fact that I was reading about people coming from all over the world to help nature recover, rehabilitate and protect animals found.
Then the unheard-of helicopter crash of Kobe Bryant, his beautiful daughter, and all their loving family friends. It was simply unbelievable for me to grasp that a helicopter full of life, love and promise was gone. A person in his own glory of such a promising future not just for him, but for the world it seemed. Truly Kobe Bryant was an ambassador of not only basketball, or the future of women’s sports, but a testimony to what could come to each of us if we are personally and professionally connected to hard work, care for one another, love for family and friends. The world was grieving, and I couldn’t seem to shake how deep his loss was to me personally. Yet, I never meet him, but feel I knew him. . I completely felt touched by his story and the loss of all their loved ones being left behind to pick Somehow our souls felt connected and I felt such pain for his family on earth especially for their loss and how they are being forced with such grief to pick up all the pieces. I wondered how to continue his started legacy for others in my own small contribution. It wasn’t only their grief, but as a collective, it was our loss and part of our story too.
Now, there is not a part of the world, not a rock unturned that can miss the experience of this pandemic that has stopped the world. Stopped us in our tracks to live in our homes and for many away from our loved ones, especially our precious seniors. Elderly parents and grandparents have become “senior inmates.” We can no longer hug each other, kiss each other on the checks, or stand shoulder and shoulder in solidarity, but a part as ONE living separately. How crazy is this. We are only allowed to leave our homes for essential tasks such as the market or medical needs while cautioned not to do it too often. We cannot go to the parks or beaches either as those parking spaces are on lock down too. We are required to stand 6 feet away from each other and we must shield our faces with masks. People I have known for years, look at me and no longer recognize me yet I continually get a happy surprise when they do, “Carina, is that you?” This is all so strange of a feeling that we are living.
I have been praying and talking to God from morning to night for me, my family, my friends, my neighbors, my community, and our world. Asking for guidance, asking for protection, asking for understanding in not so much what is going on, but what my direction needs to be. So many people asking me to post on heart driven purpose, but I was waiting for God to give me direction on when and on what. I write from my heart and there is nothing premeditated in my writings. This is not a school project for me, this is a purpose and my calling from God. Whether I’m selling home warranty, working for nonprofits, college systems or a restaurant, the common thread is a “heart driven purpose” and my source is God.
In the past, and I will say for most of my life, Easter Sunday has been my “check point” so to speak. Questions I ask myself include:
How am I doing with my goals?
Am I living my heart driven purpose?
Am I representing God in my being?
What can I do better or differently to be a better version and contributor to life?
Am I living in alignment with myself, my faith, my purpose?
I feel strongly about Jesus’ resurrection as my resurrection and it is my responsibility to honor God’s sacrifice by doing my personal and spiritual best too. This Easter was different. I woke up stirring and thinking, “God, if you think this is my end or the end of us, I’ll accept your calling. I know I lived my life in your accordance and your graces, maybe not perfect, but my heart has been perfect in you. You are the power and have the power of me. I will ask you to give me direction when you want me to write and what to write, but I’m waiting.”
It has been 7 days passed and the Greek Orthodox Easter was yesterday. Still curious why I wasn’t being called to write last night, but this morning was different. It was as if God had me go to bed earlier last night only to wake refreshed and guided to take pen in hand and write in my journal this. I was moved by the Holy Spirit and this is what comes from my heart. Both calendars have officially celebrated Easter and the rising of Jesus Christ in 2020. Please know, in my 53 years of life, definitely my adult life, I’m accustomed to hearing, “this is the most spiritual day of the Christian religion,” yet this year I didn’t hear it on the news, radio or television. And yet I waited for God to call me to share what was coming to me and what was rattling in my heart from the Holy Spirit.
Today, is the day that marks for me, what the resurrection is calling us to do now. On 4-20-2020, the world has completely stopped, and I am in wonder of the significance of this day in the eyes of the Lord. Nothing of it makes sense, but as a people we are following along like sheep in fear of the unknown and as the only means to gather and protect our families, loved ones and neighbors. We all do this in hope of rising again as a people, a community, a nation and a world. Seeking the good through our hope in believing the unknown by rising again from this “dead feeling” we all have inside and all of us wanting to follow the new rules of today for a better tomorrow.
Despite the virus and all the technology and scientific advancements, this virus has done nothing more than knocked every one of us in the world down, or in my observation, calling on us to fall on our knees to pray! For me, we need God, this Easter was a time to resurrect our faith, to go deep and then deeper than we thought possible spiritually. We don’t need to manifest quiet to listen, the world has been silenced for us. It is a time to feel our faith by the love for humanity with a servitude for God, the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ. For Christians the Trinity is a personal symbol branded on our hearts in testimony of faith. Asking Jesus Christ for protection and his grace and guidance, he is the living bread and wine for us to have a pure heart and soul despite our misgivings.
Yet, this Easter, this reflection time of year for me, I was reminded through my prayers, my awareness and then virtual church service yesterday, that I might be hiding my belief in God and in prayers. In the last few years, I have felt accosted by others despite my faith and respect for others and their belief systems when I call on the need to pray. So strange and very sad.
This Easter during the darkest of humankind days, I found myself perplexed why I saw more Easter bunnies and colored Easter eggs then the mention of Jesus Christ’s resurrection. Especially in such a time of turmoil because for me, Jesus’ resurrection is every day, every year and not just a biblical story of the past; the Holy Spirit is asking us to find our presence in scripture in what we are living today.
Or are we just following scientists and politicians without a sense of following God’s commandments? What are we being called on today for us to represent our faith and Christianity through compassion, forgiveness, love and respect for one another and for ourselves? The most significance of Jesus’ resurrection was not just his forgiveness of our sins, but the empowerment for us to forgive others. Are we owning this gift from God? Are we taking our power to love, forgive, care and respect one another during this pandemic in the name of Jesus Christ by calling on the Holy Spirit to guide us and lead us in God’s love? How are we going to reinvent ourselves spiritually to champion the future of the world because for the first time, we all need healing and we all need each other to do it.
I have mixed emotions, because I’m not feeling the collective. For one, I think I was the only person not mesmerized by Andrea Bocelli’s Easter Concert. Why was Jesus missing from the performance? Why did we not call on the fact that we are celebrating not a singer, but Jesus Christ that rose from the dead to give us life of the world to come? The single most important day to Christians? Wouldn’t that be more profoundly comforting and enriching in a time whereas the whole world is in bewilderment of what is happening or what will happen next? With respects to all faiths, yet not forgetting Jesus in the mix.
For those reading this, not knowing me, my friends are a healthy representation of all spiritual or non spiritual beliefs: Krishna, Hindu, Buddhist, Organized Christian religions, Muslim, Jewish, Scientologist, Agnostic, Spiritual, etc. We respect one another, yet as a Christian community, we are very divided and hence hidden in one of the most important times of the year for our spiritual empowerment, and now our history of the world, we are not pronouncing Easter as our saving grace knowing we are promised through our belief system of the world to come? Whether on earth or in heaven, we want to sweep this incredible knowledge under the rug? The resurrection of Jesus Christ wasn’t important enough to mention in the Easter concert and I feel it is because as a Christian community we have lost our meaning as a collective community. What is that saying, "united we stand, divided we fall." We fell on Easter.
After I wrote I asked God, when I finished writing, “What was so important that on this day, I felt called to write? What do these days represent?” Yesterday’s mass called on us to not be afraid to be Christians. To put our fears and concerns into prayer with the Lord. To call on our Christian friends to trust in “the resurrection as our meaning of the life of the world to come!” Challenging us to reach out and tell our story of “Jesus Christ rising from the dead for us to live.”
Looking at the number references of 4-20-2020, today's date, I combined my reflection of biblical reference, 2020 Goals for this year, and my interpretation of what the meaning evokes in me. If any of my story resonates with you, I pray you are called on in your heart to share the story of the resurrection too.
Let's start with the number four! The biblical and the prophetic meaning of #4 has to do with the creation on the 4th, when God created the sun, the moon and the stars (Genesis 1:14-19). The purpose of 4 signifies a sense of totality; dividing the day from light. The 4th in the Ten Commandments is also God’s Holy Sabbath Day (Exodus 20: 9-11). God himself made this day between Friday sunset to Saturday sunset as a special day when God rested after bringing everything into existence. Why this was meaningful to me is that this came up in prayer for me this past week. I even shared on Facebook and received one like. When I started Heart Driven Purpose, I felt that our world was too busy, and we needed a day of rest if we were going to become human again. Yes, I said, “human again.” Then I read Oprah’s book on “what she knows for certain” and she clarifies the importance to her success model too. A day of rest to recharge and for me to reflect, pray and rest. I was giving myself permission to rest. If God valued rest, then so should I!
20 can mean the completion or a perfect waiting period. God promised Abraham that if he found 20 righteous people in Sodom and Gomorrah, he would not destroy both cities (Genesis 18:31). So, I’m calling on 20 Christian friends to share their story in what the resurrection of Jesus Christ means to them in general and what it means to them today. Please hashtag #JesusChrist #HolySpirit #Resurrection #Easter2020. Certainly, feel free to tag me so I can hear your share too. During these times let's be mindful to be humble enough to call on our appreciation for Jesus' resurrection too.
Also, I am sharing 20 different names that reference Jesus Christ in the bible. I’m certain there are more, but for today, this is my study and share.
1. Advocate, 1John2:1
2. Almighty, Revelation1:8
3. Alpha and Omega, Revelation 1:8
4. Amen, Revelation 3:14
5. Anointed, Psalms 2:2
6. Apostle, Hebrews 3:1
7. Arm the Lord, Isiah51:9-10
8. Living Bread, John 6:51
9. Living Stone, 1 Peter 2:4
10. Author, Hebrews 12:2
11. Lord of All, Acts 10:36
12. Lord of Righteousness, Jeremiah 26:6
13. Lord God Almighty, Revelation 15:3
14. Lord of Heaven, 1 Corinthians 15:47
15. Author, Hebrews 12:2
16. Beloved, Ephesians 1:6
17. Lord of the Dead, Living Romans 14:9
18. Lord, Mighty in Battle, Psalms 24:8
19. Lord of Hosts, Isiah, 44:6
20. Lord of Glory, James 2:1
Now, for the 2020. I can say there was such an excitement of this new decade thinking we are “going to see this decade in a brand-new light.” Wow! I think we are all in agreement no matter what our belief system we are in for an awakening like no other. A new vision we might wish we didn’t have to see, but we are here like it or not.
As a Christian, I feel today’s time can be likened to the crucifixion of Jesus. For many feeling the cuts in palms of hands and feet, wounds being dug into with feelings of anguish and death of life as we knew it, know it. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, when it comes to vision, the distance can make a huge difference in how you see. So, my question for myself, and now I ask you, "What is your distance with God?" Maybe the reason for all that is happening in this new decade of 2020 is asking us to question the distance we are keeping between ourselves and God. How are we looking at the world? Is it through our hearts which connects us to our Christ center or through the eyes of a superficiality of what matters through ego?
This was such a powerful a-ha for me, that I felt it deep in my heart as I was writing this aspect of my own revelation in faith, life, and future. The cross that Jesus carried closed our gap in relation to where we stand with God, but for many that gap has widened as more Christians were caught up in the material and not the spiritual of life. What foods to eat, what Netflix to watch and what clothes to wear or cars to drive, forgetting we can be naked in the eyes of the Lord and actually truly clothed with our heart for Him. I sure wish instead of hearing how much the stocks have gone up on Netflix during this time, we heard the outstanding numbers of people praying virtually and helping one another with kindness, love and respect. Jesus didn’t die on the cross for our forgiveness, he died to empower us to go on and forgive others, live in His name, and call on the Holy Spirit of the miracles of life that God is holding for us.
2020 is a new awareness of a vision, whereas we see with our heart and no longer our eyes. Are you ready? If not, what do you need to do to get started in seeing with our heart? It is time to sharpen our vision of within.
For Christians, Jesus lives in each of our lives through prayers, kindness, love, and respect for one another. God blesses and we bless others as God’s children with our words, kindness, faith and gratitude. That is what I hear in my heart called to write and share about Easter 2020 during the pandemic. Happy Resurrection of Jesus Christ. He lives so we live his example for others. Here I am God! I am here to serve you and be of servitude to others through your name! The Trinity of Life.
Please note, if you would like to work with me in coaching, there is a spiritual sense to my work. Consulting too, but there are various agencies in my field of work in which I respectfully keep religious views outside of the scope. I respect our diversity of population and beliefs to be able to honor our collective differences a whole.