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Classic Groundhog Day BONUS: Trade a prognosticated prison for the cheerful presence and peace of living love!
(Warren Huff’s annual Met with ideas for redemption when healing has been delayed)

With a big Groundhog Day celebration on (Feb. 2, 2023) in Punxsutawney, PA, you may want to join me in thinking about some of the fun and potentially healing lessons in the 1993 classic movie, “Groundhog Day.” (The AMC Channel on local cable and video providers will also offer airings of the movie today. Check your local listings.) Those who seem to wake up day after day to the same nightmarish conditions, no matter how hard they pray, need despair no longer! When so-called “involuntary” conditions beyond your control seem to be “socked-in” forever, it may help to remember the situation that Bill Murray faced in the movie, “Groundhog Day.” No matter what he did, he awoke, day after day, trapped in the same scenario of circumstances that seemed beyond his control.

Here are two divine laws that seemed to be blatantly violated and ineffective for Bill Murray, and maybe for you: 1) The 3rd commandment, that could be read as this heavenly promise: “As God’s reflection, ‘Thou shalt not (be able to) take God’s name (nature) in vain’;” (or to no avail) and 2) The divine law that “There is no involuntary action.” (Science & Health, 187:22 by Mary Baker Eddy)

In “Groundhog Day,” Bill Murray was so frustrated by what seemed like such a hopeless, repetitious situation that he attempted suicide (as increased numbers have in recent years…)   — many times even, and in different ways, only to find that suicide was no solution either since the same problems repeated themselves the following day. Finally, he rebelled against the feeling of frustration and involuntary helplessness by making a conscious, voluntary decision that he could be happy and spread happiness and seek constant self-improvement, even if his prospects and conditions never seemed to improve. The result of this joyous, selfless voluntary action, in rebellion to his involuntary situation broke the dead-lock and produced daily, progressive joy, kindness and good deeds. He consciously decided no matter what happened, to take on God’s name, or nature, and that was not in vain.

Similarly, Joseph refused to be discouraged whenever he was thrown into the pits! (See Genesis 37-39) First, came the pit of the slavery that Joseph was sold into because of the jealousy of his brothers. Do you ever seem to be an apparent slave to anything or anyone, due to jealousy or to circumstances beyond your control? To mope over this seeming condition as a reality is to affirm your enslavement and so argue against your own case for freedom and happiness. Instead, keep affirming your freedom and strive to glimpse in advance the pure joy of your God-ordained liberty. Such settled, inner joy allowed Joseph to give excellent service in his job and earned him a promotion. But again he was unjustly torpedoed, this time sentenced to prison by the false accusation of an unrequited lover.

Again, Joseph refused to be discouraged, but found joy in serving as he was able to and in “blooming where he was planted.” And, thanks to God’s plan of salvation and network of “grace that makes beauty out of everything,” (U2 song “Grace.”) Joseph was able to interpret Pharaoh’s dream and to save his whole region as well as his own family from starvation with the grain he was led to stockpile and ration.

And, speaking of grain, remember the lessons that lowly oysters teach us about what to do with irritating grains of sand or grit. They apply layer upon layer of secretion (the secret ingredient of Love) on the irritant and so produce beautiful pearls, even a whole string of them. Our finest gems, the “pearl(s) of great price,” are due to properly treating long-time irritations. As Forest Gump might say, “Grit happens. Make Pearls!”

Although most of the healings I’ve had or witnessed been quick ones, the Groundhog or pearl-type usually produce more character transformation and spiritual growth. As Mary Baker Eddy’s New Year’s Verse for the Big Children ends: “In the way Thou hast, Be it slow or fast, Up to Thee.” (Poems, 69:12)

God’s will for you is always good, always health and wholeness, so don’t despair! Let your smile return right away! Cultivate and rejoice not only in your divine (self) image and likeness, but also in a selfless interest in others, in ice-carving, piano-practicing, dream-interpretation or whatever other wonderful ways you are led to “put your whole self in” by freely giving of your inner beauty, unique talents and unselfed love. Such “life-altaring” will be truly “life-altering!”

God loves you relentlessly, and so do I!

Warren (as a spokesperson for Punxsutawney Phil)

P.S. Remember too that no matter if I (Phil) see my own shadow or not tomorrow, YOU will never see your own shadow or be fearful, as long as you face the sun (Son)! And, no matter how often nasty winter storm patterns seem to be repeated, “It matters not what be thy lot, so Love doth guide; For storm or shine, pure peace is thine, whate’er betide” Hymn 160 “Satisfied” (CedarS 2023 Theme)

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