It’s that time again isn’t it? Time to pause and reflect back.

Have you thought about changes you might like to make for 2019?

You know what… there are SO many huge issues going on in the world right now that it is easy to feel over-whelmed.  We may feel helpless to make changes within world politics – but we do all have a voice if we vote. We might think we can do nothing about Japanese reintroducing whale-hunting in 2019 – but wait a minute are they not hosting the next Olympics in 202? – then we do have a say if as a nation we petition through our national interest in sport. President Trump disagrees with Global warming yet horrendous natural disasters are happening and we still continue fracking. And then of course there’s wretched Brexit … What are we doing with our world?

And yet I am actually getting really excited about next year.

We have an A-Mazing opportunity to make a difference.  Do you remember the story about the humming bird?

The jungle forest was on fire and the animals were fleeing for their lives. Big cats, deer, and all four legged creatures raced to get out of the fiery flames. But as a monkey went swinging through the trees he noticed a tiny bird hovering by the flowers growing at the top of the forest canopy. “What are you doing little bird? Come on, come on, we all have to get out of here”. The little bird flew to a flower, collected the nectar in it’s beak and flew over the flames dropping the liquid then returning to the blossoms above.

“Come on, come on” … yelled the monkey, “you’ll be caught in the flames”. But the humming bird carried on regardless, flying to the flowers, filling his beak with nectar and dropping it onto the flames below.

“But what are you doing?” Cried the monkey.

“I’m doing my bit” the little humming bird replied.

Well, I’m not actively involved in politics,  but we do need activists. Neither am I an environmentalist by profession, but like many of you I love the planet with a passion and support all those who work for the environment as much as possible. And we certainly do our bit here by recycling carefully, re-using, and nurturing our garden. But can I raise my voice through petitions, by voting with awareness, by using social media carefully, by helping to build social communities and spread mindful awareness of our personal, spiritual development? Then in some small way, I’m an agent of change. I’m doing my bit.

I watched a great tv special – another fly on the wall documentary – about several celebrities walking the ancient Christian pilgrimage along the Camino into Santiago di Campostela, Spain. I loved listening to them discuss whether or not they were really ‘pilgrims’ and trying to define what that meant to them as individuals, unpicking their reasons for agreeing to do the walk for the programme.  I read Shirley McLaine’s book The Camino  many years ago, and her vivid description of doing the challenging six week walk alone. She found her strengths and overcame weaknesses, and made friends with her spiritual guides and higher self along the way. I always believed the Camino was a journey one had to do alone, even in a group we walk at different speeds. The celebrities had clearly been chosen because of their differences, diverse life-challenges and not least because of their mixed feelings towards Christianity. The programme highlighted for me that it wasn’t just about ‘Walking the Camino’, a Christian pilgrimage that goes back centuries, but about the realities of our own spiritual journey, wherever we are and on whichever pathway we take. sometimes the road is steep, or dark, and sometimes sunny and easy, but each few miles there may be a surprising view, a beautiful encounter, or a sunset not to miss. Poignant and sad at times it was really fascinating to me. I liked all the people taking part, for different reasons. One of the most appealing to me was a deep thinker, he came across as being naturally very funny, uncomplaining, kind, compassionate and sincere. He is a comedian and I guess that as he had renounced his faith and was seeing if he needed a ‘faith’ in order to find the best of himself. I loved his ideals, which in my book were remarkably spiritual and in fact more demonstrably so than the one who was actually a an Anglican priest. He practiced his thoughtful attitude to life cheerfully. Whereas she did nothing but complain.   So when the others were complaining and struggling as they walked along the road together he was supportive and encouraged them to carry on. He was a practicing Light Worker without a label.

Watching the programme reminded me of the many challenges along my own life journey. Are we, I wonder, all pilgrims really? Many times along my own journey I’ve had to step away and be on my own to work things out for myself. It tends to be cyclical. And I wonder how many times we walk along the same life journeys, time after time, lifetime after lifetime until we get it. I’m still trying to work things out now. Though this time round I’m more aware of deeper meanings. I guess we are all pilgrims, of one kind or another, simply doing our bit.