Who would we be without our challenges, especially the ones that cause us to dig deep to determine the thickness of the stuff of which we’re made?  How would we grow and learn and seek the greater good in our lives?

I don’t like to admit that I’m a better person for grappling with my challenges.  To borrow a phrase from a life-altering book, “Who cares to admit complete defeat?”


I’m of the opinion that there are two kinds of people occupying this planet, those who are emotionally dead, and those who step into each day with passion, gusto and zeal.

Zeal is kind of a strange word, rhyming with seal which reminds me of La Jolla, CA and a string of sweet November mornings (sorry, I digress).  Unity embraces zeal as one of the spiritual faculties of man, and it is the featured power for this 10th Day of Christmas.

“The power of zeal opens the way to wondrous blessings, for it is the pure activity of Spirit at work,” reads Unity’s Advent and 12 Days of Christmas guide for 2010.

I love the visual image of zeal as a brightly lit doorway opening to an endless sea of blessings.

Charles Fillmore, one of Unity’s co-founders, said that, as with the other 11 faculties, each of us is naturally zealous.   However, many of us allow our zeal to shrivel.  We limit ourselves and avoid living fully (including facing those damnable challenges).

Fillmore wrote in the Twelve Powers of Man, “The man without zeal is like an engine without steam or an electric motor without a current.”

Zeal is one of those words that my friend Claudette would say “tastes good.”  Even better, zeal feels good, especially when poured over a heaping helping of challenges.

My bet is that if you’re reading this post, you have some degree of zeal in your life.  Good for you.  Zeal causes me to do silly, child-like and downright goofy things from time to time.  And that feels good. 

How does zeal show up for you?

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