Annie Kirkwood, Author
Rte 1 Box 100
Bunch, OK 74931-9705
February/March 1999 ó Issue #44
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This is Annie's section
I hope youíre having a great 1999. We started our New Year with our annual "Burning Ceremony." We keep a prayer basket in our home with all the requests people send either by mail, fax, or telephone call. On Sunday afternoons our meditation group meets. We place the prayer basket in our prayer circle. During the week I pray for all the people whose names are in the basket, and on Sunday the group prays.
The last week of the year, or at times the first Sunday of the year, we burn all the prayer requests as a symbol of our willingness to surrender. In order to be fair and allow those who write after Halloween to have a full year, I save those requests and put them into the basket after the burning. Mother Mary and the Brotherhood have taught us about the need to release and surrender our requests in order to have them answered. I keep getting this message, ďLet the request go.Ē Once you are satisfied that your prayer states exactly what you are thinking, feeling, and wanting, then itís time to surrender. Iíve found it best to tell God all about the subject, or person, Iím praying for or about. I tell God the obvious, what Iím anticipating, and what Iím meaning by the words Iím using. Then when Iím satisfied that Iíve not left anything out, I surrender.
But back to the prayer basket. Since the prayer requests in the basket are not my prayers, it seemed a little presumptuous to try to decide what is wanted or needed by the people. So I simply write out your name and place it in the prayer basket, or I put your letter or envelope in. My feeling is that God is listening as you pray. Iím supporting your prayer. Mother Mary said that prayer is accumulative and for that reason I believe that all supporting prayers help. Since I donít always hear back from people if their prayer is answered or not, there had to be a cut-off time. A time to surrender. I chose the end of the calendar year.
So on the Sunday after Christmas, or the Sunday after New Years, we hold a burning ceremony. We meet as usual and after the meditation we burn all the prayer requests in the prayer basket. Also we burn old calendars or a list of the things we do not want to carry into the New Year. For instance, you can list any old reoccurring behavior, or thought patterns like procrastination, obsessing, self-sabotage, or simply not sticking to a diet. We list everything that we can think of. Then we burn it all in our wood stove. You can use a stainless steel bowl, wok, or the kitchen sink. Itís not what you burn your prayer request and list in, itís the intention, thought, and motivation behind the burning. By the way, please be careful when burning your prayers.
Mother Mary urged us to make a list of goals for the year. We were taught to consider all the areas of our life; family, career, spiritual, health, self-improvement, recreation, educational, and such. Goals, as I define it, are the things, situations, attitudes, and desires I want in my life now. A year ago Byron and I were talking about what we would like to see happen in our business, B&A Products. I set a sales goal, realizing that at best it was a very high hope. It just didnít seem feasible at the time. Nothing else was said about the goal during the year, nor did I think about it again. At the end of the year we realized that we had surpassed it.
What this demonstrated to me is the power of surrender. I set that goal, praying in a very informal way that we would achieve it. Then feeling it was a very, very high hope, I let it go. I remember what I used to tell my sons, "Wish upon a star, you just might get the moon." If only it were just as easy to let go of other prayer requests. I have prayed for ten years to lose weight. I realize I donít let it go; there has never been a time of complete surrender. A few days after surrendering I will pick this request up and worry about it, especially at dinner time. Or I will put something on that doesnít fit, and feel bad about it. I find it easier to surrender the things I hope for than the things I truly want. So I just keep on praying, knowing that when the time is right, I may get it, or something better.
In all this rambling, what Iím trying to say is, if you sent in a prayer request last year and still want us to continue to pray with you, let us know. We will be happy to support your prayers, with the understanding that you will get the answer, or the request will be fulfilled in a way that is for your highest good.
Havenít you found that when you look back, that many of your prayers have been answered better than you had first imagined? Or have you noticed that sometimes your prayers start out looking like a disaster? In the new messages coming through now, Mother Mary says that sometimes God has to get us ready to receive the request. Like when I prayed for peace and then we were sued by our neighbors over Byronís amateur radio antenna. Many times Mother Mary says we have to heal or let go of old habits, thought patterns, or simply some of our "stuff" in order to receive what weíve prayed for.
In praying for peace Iíve learned not to hold grudges, to let go of many of my prejudices, and to forgive even when I didnít feel like it. Right now Iím practicing surrendering the things I want so bad, that I have a hard time letting them go.
Anyway, the whole idea behind this letter is to let you know that if we were supporting you in prayer last year and you feel you still need our support, or if you would like us to support your prayers, just write and tell us. If it makes you feel better to get things off your chest by writing about it, thatís ok. If you donít want to tell us what you are praying for, thatís ok. No one, ever sees your written request except me. We donít take the prayer requests out of the basket once they are placed there. I do my best to keep it all confidential.
I hope you have a wonderful 1999 and that all your prayers are answered, better than you imagined, and faster than lightening. We thank you for your continued support and your prayers. This is a two-way street. I support you just as you support us. Our love goes out to you. Until next time.
This is Mother Mary's section
My dear children,
It is with great pleasure that I come to you in joy and with a deep abiding peace. It is the peace that passes all understanding. This is the peace that is awaiting you. In this peace are all the components of Godís, love...non-judgmental, non-restricting, and non-limiting. There is joy...a happiness that is comforting, deep, and abiding. There is understanding...that gives you solace, consolation to the soul, and a satisfaction to the spirit. There is power...the power to go beyond pride and willfulness. There is strength...the courage to change the things in your life that need changing. There is life...a vibrancy that gives a lift to the spirit. There is serenity...the stillness of the soul and the serenity that accepts without thought that which cannot be changed. There is gratitude...a deep recognition of oneís blessings.
Peace is more than the mere cessation of antipathy. True peace is alive, just as love is alive. Many of you pray for peace but do not have peaceful hearts. Realize that what you know about peace is very limited. There is nothing limiting about peace, in contrast everything about war is limiting and destructive. So consider that there are many small wars taking place everyday in the work place, in homes and sadly in churches. These small wars are inhibiting peace. Are you inhibiting peace? Do you carry on with a feud that perhaps was not of your making? Do you have a resentful, contentious soul? Do you still judge yourself and others harshly? Do you covet what others have in their hearts, soul, or life? All these things harbingers of bigger issues, which in turn, bring about war.
My dear children, put away the hurt, pride, and injured feelings. Let nothing stand in the way of living your life in peace. True peace is lived in an atmosphere of unconditional love. The peace that passes all understanding comes from a loving, accepting, and forgiving heart. You do more good for mankind and Earth when you forgive one small injury. When you struggle to forgive the larger damage done by abuse and addiction, you do greater good for mankind. Peace has a difficult time remaining in a raging, angry life. Peace comes to the world from inside of you. How can you talk about love, and peace, yet live with resentment toward family members? How many of you promote peace from a secretive and angry heart?
Let your heart heal from all injuries from all long held injury. Make every effort to settle old disputes, to be at peace with your family and neighbors. When you do your best to live in peace, then the Spirit of Truth and Peace will assist you. There are many who pray for peace, it is now time to live your prayer. It is time to live in peace...total, undemanding, and loving peace.
Strive to bring all the components of peace into your life. Become peaceful by setting aside your harsh judgments. Perform the settling of old disputes in joy. You may shed tears; they will be good, cleansing tears. It is better for you to shed your tears, than to allow them to be buried deep within your heart. It is better to settle disputes immediately, to forgive instantly, than to live in an angry, warring way. You can begin to allow the joy of peace to fill your life. To allow the joy of peace to live in your heart is a decision. You can choose to live the rest of your days on Earth in joyful peace, or you can not make a decision and allow your life to drift along. When you fail to make the choice, then you are at the mercy of circumstances. You drift along through life, like driftwood, neither making any choices or having any dominion over your life. You allow the choices of others, the situations and circumstances of others to rule over you. It is time, my children, to take command of your life. It is time to choose peace, instead of contention. It is time to decide and take responsibility for changing the way mankind thinks, feels, and reacts.
You want peace on earth? Then live that desire every day of your life. You want to be happy? Allow the joy that is a part of peace, to dictate your reactions to lifeís circumstances. You want to help others? Then allow peace to come to this world, through your heart, decisions, and life. Peace comes to earth through you. The peace that is filled with joy, love, understanding, power, and strength to fill you with determination to live each day in peace.
Let Godís understanding begin to be the way you relate to others. Do all you can to understand, and where you cannot understand the other person, be accepting. When you accept people for themselves, instead of for what they can do, give, or bring to you, then you are loving unconditionally. Let the joy of peace fill you with strength. Being peaceful must come from your inner self. If you concentrate on the outer part of you, then you are not making the deep changes that can turn lives from war to peace. Being peaceful is more than looking serene, it is more than hiding from difficult issues. Being peaceful means you are strong enough to love without limit, without thought of changing the other person. Being peaceful means that you have the power to make a decision and to see that decision manifested in your life. Being peaceful means you appreciate life and strive to make your life a living example of Godís love, peace, and truth.
My children, heed these words. Take them into your heart of hearts. Become peaceful now. Allow yourself the pleasure of living in joyful peace, to recognize the understanding that comes with peace, and the strength that is a part of peace. You can live your life in joyful peace. Begin by concentrating on cleansing your heart and mind of all that is not peaceful. Make peace with your past, present, and future. This means that you no longer are hurtful, angry, fearful of any event or situation from the past which now causes you to be out of peace. It also means that you concentrate on staying peaceful. To do so, you will forgive immediately, love unconditionally, and have the courage and strength to make the changes necessary to live in peace. You can do this, my children. You go within to find the spark or flame of peace that lies within your heart of hearts.
I keep you in my prayers and in my heart. I love you as God does.
Mary, Mother of Jesus.
This is Byron's section
Because of the Y2K problem and all the publications Byron has been written up in, our business is booming. So much so that I offered to help out by giving my views on things to consider in being prepared. A couple of months ago we were told to think about our day and all the things we use to make our life comfortable; and to let this give us an idea of what we need to have on hand. We were told not to overlook anything.
Most certainly for me, itís my prescription medicines I think of first. We wrote to our doctor about our concerns and I plan to speak to him about allowing me to keep on hand at least a 6 month or maybe a yearís supply of the medicines I need to stay alive and comfortable. Then we looked at the over-the-counter medications that we use and those that we could possibly need. Consider those things you need for a cold or the flu. Then consider the medications you would need in case of an upset stomach and other minor emergencies. If you use herbs exclusively then do the same thing. Make a list of these items. You may want to take a week or two to complete the list. Keep it handy and add to it as something else comes to mind.
Weíve kept our old eyeglasses for emergency situations for years. Now we are gathering these types of things and storing them together. Store your medications and over-the-counter oral medications in one container. Any ointments or other topicals, bandages, band-aids, and such in another container. Keep your oral medicines away from those used in other ways. Make a list of cleaning supplies. Your list will probably include toilet paper, shampoo, hand soap, antiseptic, and such. Plain old soap and water does a good job of cleansing for scrapes and small cuts. Betadine is my choice for a cleansing agent. Iím sure that today there are other agents just as good if not better. A good anti-bacteria soap will do just as well.
We were also told not to forget the things we use to keep clean. During a crisis this will become very important since stress lowers the immune system. You will want to keep clean. As Iíve thought about it, this means soaps and other products to wash and clean our bodies, hair, teeth, clothes, kitchens, bathrooms, and home. Remember the products youíd need to take care of your pets. Donít forget those comfort items, that help us feel good, lotions, or maybe a nasal spray. It could be that water is an issue and then the need for cleanliness is even more important.
Everyone will benefit from a well-stocked, first-aid kit. You may want to supplement it with specialty bandages, such as for a finger, knuckle, or ankle. You will want extra elastic bandages and large absorbent bandages. My viewpoint is that God gave each of us common sense, and now is the time to use it. I donít believe anyone should go overboard in preparing. Neither do I advocate preparing with fear in your heart. From my nursing background I know that the more knowledge we have, and the better we are prepared, the less likely we are to panic. I donít believe that preparing will bring this down on us, like a death wish.
About five hundred years ago, people on earth believed the world was flat. It was believed by the majority of people, but their belief didnít make the earth flat. So if we prepare because itís the smart thing to do, then we are helping mankindís consciousness. I believe the better prepared we are, the more we are able to cope with any situation. The more confidence we have, the better we are able to handle our needs and the needs of others.
One of the first things Byron and I suggest is for everyone in your family to take a first-aid/CPR course. The American Red Cross and many hospitals give these classes. Itís inexpensive and one of the best investments for your money. Everyone in the family needs to take this course. If only one person takes it and that person is injured, not only will the injured party suffer, but so will everyone else who was relying on him. Once youíve taken the first-aid course, you will have a better idea of the extra bandages you need.
You will also want to put up vitamins, especially vitamin C. If we are not able to get citrus fruits over a prolonged period of time, we could easily get Scurvy. If you have children or elderly relatives, you will certainly want to be prepared to meet their nutritional needs with supplements. When we are under stress, we have a greater need for vitamins and minerals.
You really need to think things through if you have a baby or small child. Donít forget the diapers. You may want to buy a couple dozen cloth diapers. Itís not so bad to wash them. The sun disinfects and is one way to be sure they are clean. You will want to have pediatric medications and vitamins on hand. If your child has special needs, plan for them. If he/she wears glasses, have an extra pair. If she/he uses a hearing aid or other device that requires batteries, have a good supply on hand. If we have to do without electricity for a long period of time you will want to have games and activity supplies.
Teens and adults would enjoy fun activities. Get some board games and cards. If we have to do without electricity, it could bring us together in good ways so a special bonding takes place. This will happen more often if we have done our homework and are ready for any emergency.
I strongly dislike a "to do list," but in this case it is important that we have our needs covered. So Iím biting the bullet and have been making lists. Weíve found that if there is any fear of the future, it diminishes as you become prepared. You will have more confidence and be able to see the good that will come because there is always good in every situation. Prepare because itís a wise thing to do, not because you are afraid. But if you are afraid, do it anyway; itís a good way to overcome the fear.
Have fun preparing, let the whole family get involved. Itís not such a scary thing when youíre ready. Do it with the same attitude you use when buying groceries or car insurance. We make these purchases to meet our familyís needs. In being prepared we are simply preparing to meet what could possibly be just what our family needs. We can do this with love instead of fear, when we allow love to be our motivation.
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