Welcome to 29 Gifts' Prayer Faire - Mardi Gras Style, brought to you by The Prayer Cafe at 29 Gifts!
In this first-of-its-kind online Prayer Faire, we are going to share in the celebration of Mardi Gra with a Spiritual Twist, followed by a Lenten Surrender Splendor, also like you've never seen before!
On this, Day One of your Prayer Faire, we will set the stage - or parade route - so to speak. I will share with you what I envision it to be like and what we hope to accomplish with this historical event.
As with so many things I write, I had no intention of holding a Mardi Gras Prayer Faire; yet as I was contemplating what kind of event to have for The Prayer Cafe/29 Gifts in this New Year, based on the past positive reception to our 29 Minutes of Peace and our Prayer Camp, the impulse came upon me for the Prayer Faire. I have never been, nor had any intention of attending a Mardi Gras event as it always seemed a little over the top and I'm not that kind of partying person. Yet it is revealed to me as an opportunity to look deeper behind the event in its physical form and seek the Spiritual meaning within the outward symbols. The result is this Prayer Faire - Mardi Gras Style, which I am sharing with you based on the direction of Spirit and which I hope will be a blessing to you. It is an exercise in Revelation Unfolding.
Let us begin with a Prayer of Dedication:
Dear Blessed Spirit -
With open hearts, hands, and minds, we step into this Celebration with hearts willing to receive Your Guidance, Direction, and Blessing!
Each day, we awaken more in our Awareness of Your Presence and Blessings in our lives. Every encounter gives us an opportunity to receive and to Give back to You through Divine Interaction.
Within our homes, keep us focused on our family members, giving them the patience and compassion we also share with other friends.
At our place of school or employment or other service, help us to be willing to accomplish all tasks knowing You are being served through our actions and our attitudes!
If we have health conditions of any kind, may be be mindful that You are the Divine Physician, the Divine Healer who has ultimate Power - when we line up with that Power, we are in direct connection with Wholeness.
Thank You, Blessed Spirit, for all the Blessings we have in our lives - there are so many - we could spend hours a day in Gratitude - help us be mindful every moment of these Blessings - and all we have and can do and can be.
Moving into this special time of Celebration and Devotion (Prayer Faire), keep us open and receptive to Your Revelations so that we see with New Eyes, hear with New Ears, taste life with a New Appreciation, and open our arms to Embrace Changes Before Us because we come more into our Oneness with You through this Change.
It is Good!
Some of the components of Mardi Gra Celebration include the following, which we will adapt to The Prayer Cafe standards and which we will interpret spiritually/metaphyscially to perhaps come into a greater understanding of the actions and motivations behind them:
- In 2012, Mardi Gras ends on Fat Tuesday, 21 February, the day before Ash Wednesday, 22 February.
- Traditional celebration includes people dressing up in costumes and masks and joining in parades and eating rich, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of Lenten Season which begins on Ash Wednesday.
- Traditional colors are purple, green, and gold, representing:
- - Purple = Justice
- - Green = Faith
- - Gold = Power
- Doubloons are coins commemorating Mardi Gras (each year has different design on the coin, along with that year's theme, making it a collector’s item). People love collecting beads and coins.
- King's Cakes are small cakes and the person who gets the cake with the "baby" inside is the one to host next year's party or who is crowned king of the current year. The King's Cake represents the Three Kings who brought gifts to Baby Jesus.
Whatever makes sense to you, I invite you to allow it to soak into your consciousness and learn from it as you will; give yourself time for prayerful devotion every day (without interruption) and as you are holding all those who have requested prayer in mind and heart, remember to hold yourself there as well, as a Sacred Vessel of Divinity. Keeping yourself filled with Awareness of the Divine will give you strength every day to meet your challenges and rise above any limitations. I hope you will begin identifying any self-perceived limitations through the next week of Prayer Faire and use the following Lenten period to allow the transformations to take place within you.
You do not have to have any background in Mardi Gras, Lent, or other "religious" event to participate in this activity. Again, take from it what works for yourself. Each person has a personal perspective about the Creator or Highest Power. Don't let anyone tell you what you believe is wrong - Spirit speaks to each heart uniquely. Mardi Gras has spiritual undertones that may be shrouded in outrageous revelry and out-of-control behaviors that contradict its original intention. While we won't be getting a history lesson on Mardi Gras, we will be looking at the prsent physical reflection and interpreting the Sacred lessons to be taken from it.
The "Parade Route" will go something like this* (each day will have its own Discussion since having them altogether would be cumbersome and hard to refer back to certain days, so watch for New Discussions each day with a title like, "Prayer Faire - Day 2," etc.):
Day 1 - 14 February - Kick-off - Orientation/Overview/Dedication
Day 2 - 15 February - (a) Brief Interpretation of Symbols and (b) What Costume and Mask are you wearing in Life's Parade?
Day 3 - 16 February - Wild Want and Abandon
Day 4 - 17 February - Unveiling Mask #1
Day 5 - 18 February - Unveiling Mask #2
Day 6 - 19 February - Unveiling Mask #3
Day 7 - 20 February - Unveiling Mask #4
Day 8 - 21 February - FAT TUESDAY
Lenten Surrender Splendor: Kicks off Ash Wednesday, 22 February. More details at that time but it will directly follow-up the Prayer Faire.
*I reserve the right to alter the Parade Route should New Directions be received!
Finally, because today is Valentine's Day, let yourself feel the Gift of Love for you from Your Creator-God - you always have this Perfect, Divine Relationship, regardless of your status in the world. And in your Divine Relationship you will never have a broken heart or fall short of anyone's expectations or fall off a pedestal.
TODAY'S BEADS OF BLESSING: "God thinks you're Perfect - and loves you just the way you are."
Note: To learn more about Mardi Gras, visit these links (I am not criticizing or endorsing any, just providing as information source):