My Birthday Wish: May My Life Be an Offering
My birthday is on March 21, the first day of spring, and has always been a very special day for me. When I was a little girl, my mother always celebrated my birthday in the most wonderful ways. I would wake up in the morning to balloons, ribbons, and, of course, tons of food. There was always a party in the afternoon with all my friends: I was the center of attention, and I felt seen and loved—I mattered. Even when I was living on my own in London, the tradition continued; I celebrated my birthday, no matter what. I always gathered with friends, went out to dinner, and felt an abundant joy in the celebration of my life.
Later, when I lived with my sister at our home in Los Angeles, we would invite my spiritual teacher, John-Roger, and a few other friends, and we would sit around a table expressing our wishes, blessings, and prayers. It was magical!
One year, I came up with the wish to live life for a day in the true freedom of my spirit: a day with no judgments or self-imposed limitations; a day with a sense of peace and joy; a day to experience the freedom of my soul and my connection to the light. So, that became my new birthday tradition. To me, that would be the best birthday present ever, and there were some birthdays when my wish came true—I felt a fullness in my heart and an exuberant joy, I was free of any worries or preoccupations tugging at me, and I was totally present in my happiness—so I had a powerful reference point for the rest of my days.
In 2020, my birthday found me in Los Angeles. It was the second week of the pandemic, and I was in quarantine.
Obviously, this was going to be a very different kind of a birthday celebration, one spent at home cooking with my family, who I was quarantined with, and connecting with friends via FaceTime and text—different ways of receiving love from my friends and family. Although I was saddened that I could not have people come for dinner, get my hair done, or go to my favorite restaurant, I woke up that morning filled with such profound gratitude that my family and I were at home together, safe and healthy. In the midst of the crisis, I felt a sense of fullness without any external celebration. In the context of the pandemic, it was most important to be with those I love the most—my family. The day was not only about celebrating me and my birthday, but also our togetherness and our immense gratitude that we were healthy and well.
I experienced a deep sense of compassion for people across the world because of what they were suddenly enduring: businesses and cities were shutting down, people were losing family members, many were losing their jobs, and everyone was facing immense uncertainty about the future. I wanted to fall to my knees and thank God for my life and for a moment of goodness in the face of all that was happening. The week before, I had been preoccupied with which restaurant we should go to for my birthday dinner and whether I would have time to buy a new outfit to wear. Just one week later, life shifted into perspective. I was overcome with the feeling that there was nothing to get but everything to give back.
This heartfelt connection to the soulfulness of life has always been with me, but it was activated in a new way on this recent birthday. That morning, there was this resonant deep prayer inside of me: “I want more of you, God, and less of me.” All of us, on some level, suffer from feelings of deficiency and lack, and we are always seeking validation outside of ourselves. But we are holding the key to the door through which we can find validation. That validation is directly connected to realizing we are created from the essence of the spirit. When we tune in to that reality, of course we will automatically feel validated because we understand the wholeness of who we are spiritually. You might be a mess in your physical reality, but there is always a loving soul inside of you. The soul doesn’t wait until you think you have it all together to love you. The soul wants to love you right now, just as you are. If you pray for access to that source, it will overflow into the rest of your life.
That birthday morning, I got to the place of knowing that life had given me so much. I was hit with this recognition of the richness of my life, and I prayed to make my life an offering to that larger spirit, to hold that intention on a daily basis, and to become more attuned to how I can be of service and add to the good of all.
Ask yourself: What would your life be like if you really gave up the things that hold you back from experiencing your fullness and the aliveness of your spirit? What is the one thing you could release so your soul could expand? Is it that you don’t feel that you are enough; you don’t feel loved or valued; you believe that other people’s lives matter more than yours? Is it that you wish you were more successful, more attractive, more recognized, more financially secure, more confident, more supported by others, more seen? Can you find a place within yourself in which you can let go of these feelings and instead embrace the gift that you are alive? In that moment of experiencing the miracle of your aliveness, you will see yourself as the beloved, and you will let your soul fill you with the light and love of who you are. You will be less worldly driven and more spirit filled.
It doesn’t have to be your birthday. You can make this wish at any time—to become more aware of the beauty, light, and inner mastery that is the birthright of each one of us waiting to be revealed. I believe that the power of our transformation is not in the big things but in the small ways we can let go and open ourselves to the greater presence within us.
It takes courage to take the first step toward this unknown presence, not knowing when we ask if anything will be there to meet us or if we will be left hanging alone. I assure you that if you dive into your heart, and from that deep place, ask to be led, you will be guided by the spirit that lives inside of you.
When my heart shifts my eyes to your gaze, my whole self releases and feels the calm parts of your spirit flow in me.
On my birthday, I make my life an offering to you. I give my life back to you!
I now let go of my ambition, my desire to become something more important than I am, my insecurity and my angst. I release them to your grace.
I am like the most divine circus ringmaster, taming my lesser parts that want more of this and more of that, and I open my arms and say to you, “I want more of you!” I now breathe you in, I am letting you in, and I kneel in the altar of love and immerse myself in the spirit of oneness.
I feel like an excited child, led by the most loving parent to the theme park, who is about to explore the rides, and even have fun on the roller coasters. My life belongs to you because, in fact, it was never mine. It was freely given to me. Now it is yours again, even more blossomed and fuller than before.
Thank you for this newfound liberation that comes with knowing that love can flow in me and from again, so I may touch the hearts of others and be of joyful service.
So be it.
Copyright © 2022 by Agapi Stassinopoulos. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.