"Leaving the City of Regret "
(By: Larry Harp)

1-20-99 Story of the Week from Church Within #15
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Welcome
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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome again to The
Church Within Story of the Week [S.O.W.]

This week's SOW - #15, contributed by: Karen Larsen

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Story of the Week
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"LEAVING THE CITY OF REGRET"
(By: Larry Harp)


I had not really planned on taking a trip this time of year, and yet I found myself packing rather hurriedly. This trip was going to be unpleasant and I knew in advance that no real good would come of it. I'm talking about my annual "Guilt Trip."

I got tickets to fly there on Wish I Had airlines. It was an extremely short flight. I got my baggage, which I could not check. I chose to carry it myself all the way. It was weighted down with a thousand memories of what might have been. No one greeted me as I entered the terminal to the Regret City International Airport. I say international because people from all over the world come to this dismal town.

As I checked into the Last Resort Hotel, I noticed that they would be hosting the year's most important event, the Annual Pity Party. I wasn't going to miss that great social occasion. Many of the towns leading citizens would be there.

First, there would be the Done family, you know, Should Have, Would Have and Could Have. Then came the I Had family. You probably know ol' Wish and his clan. Of course, the Opportunities would be present, Missed and Lost. The biggest family would be the Yesterday's. There are far too many of them to count, but each one would have a very sad story to share.

Then Shattered Dreams would surely make and appearance. And It's Their Fault would regale us with stories (excuses) about how things had failed in his life, and each story would be loudly applauded by Don't Blame Me and I Couldn't Help It.

Well, to make a long story short, I went to this depressing party knowing that there would be no real benefit in doing so. And, as usual, I became very depressed. But as I thought about all of the stories of failures brought back from the past, it occurred to me that all of this trip and subsequent "pity party" could be cancelled by ME! I started to truly realize that I did not have to be there. I didn't have to be depressed. One thing kept going through my mind, I can't change yesterday, but I do have the power to make today a wonderful day. I can be happy, joyous, fulfilled, encouraged, as well as encouraging. Knowing this, I left the City of Regret immediately and left no forwarding address. Am I sorry for mistakes I've made in the past? YES! But there is no physical way to undo them.

So, if you're planning a trip back to the City of Regret, please cancel all your reservations now. Instead, take a trip to a place called, Starting Again. I liked it so much that I have now taken up permanent residence there. My neighbors, the I Forgive Myselfs and the New Starts are so very helpful. By the way, you don't have to carry around heavy baggage, because the load is lifted from your shoulders upon arrival. God bless you in finding this great town. If you can find it -- it's in your own heart -- please look me up. I live on I Can Do It street.

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The Prayer
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Dear Ever Loving Parent,        
        It has been said that "The Kingdom of Heaven is Within", and this I know for indeed have I seen it there. For So long I saw only with the eyes of this material body... saw only what I could feel with my earthly senses. Then one day You showed me Yourself in the Soul of another. Yes, I knew You... perceived You... There... when the eyes of my Soul opened. I was a little sh..sh..shocked... a little s..s..startled. But then I felt Your Love radiating within my Own Soul... receiving from There... returning from... from... HERE! Yes, I knew... why… It was so Simple! It was a... a Heavenly feeling... a Heavenly Place to BE. It is a place that You will reveal More to me as I hold your hand... as I take the steps in Faith... as I allow You to guide me. "The Kingdom of Heaven is Within?" Why... of COURSE it is!
Thank You for teaching me how to See.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Eternal Love, through me, to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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