When I was twenty-seven and had a few years of sobriety under my belt, I wanted to find a fulfilling way to earn my living. My psychic and healing gifts were coming along slowly. I practiced minireadings on friends and did healings on family members when they got sick. But I didn't feel ready to "go pro" with my gifts.
I was working at this time as a receptionist/secretary at an employment agency for recovering alcoholics. My boss encouraged me to go back to school to earn a degree in chemical dependency counseling. I took his advice, but after a one-month internship at a halfway house, I knew this wasn't the work for me. I left the program before getting my degree.
One night during an AA meeting, I talked about wanting to find a career. Someone suggested I look into my heart and think about the things I loved doing. There was something I had always loved: fixing hair. It let me be creative, and the idea of making people look and feel good appealed to me.
One of the things I had learned about God's will in sobriety is that if something is His will for us, the pieces fall into place easily.
My job at the employment agency was perfect because I had access to various places in town where a person could apply for financial aid for school. I wound up applying to the local barber college and was accepted. The only glitch was a two-year waiting list to begin.
I asked God what I should do. This delay didn't feel right. It felt like I was meant to start school with the new spring class.
My inner voice told me to ask the owner of the college how I could begin in the spring. I went down to the school and told him I really wanted to get into school as soon as possible. He told me that the only way I would was if he got three cancellations between now and the start date. He warned me not to get my hopes up because there were two people ahead of me on the cancellation list and people rarely gave up their place on the list.
I stood up, shook his hand, and told him I was going to pray for three cancellations.
"You're gonna do what? Did you say 'pray'?"
"Yes, sir," I replied. "I'm going to pray for three cancellations -- and I'll see you in the spring."
Every few weeks, my inner voice nudged me to send the owner a "thinking of you" card to remind him that I was praying. About six weeks after our meeting, he called. "You must have some great connections," he said. "I just got a third cancellation. See you soon."
But all my problems were not solved. I had to figure out how to make enough money to support myself while attending school. Two days later, the owner called me again. Would I be interested in a janitor/office job at the school? Bingo: the money I needed to live on.
I really liked school and loved cutting hair. Men were easy to work with, and it was always fun to send them off looking nice. All the while, my psychic and healing abilities were growing stronger. My hands would heat up during a haircut if the customer needed healing. Once in a while, psychic information would pop out of my mouth if someone needed guidance. A man might come and sit in my barber chair, and as I worked on him, my hands would heat up and I'd have an urge to touch his back. The client might ask me why my hands were hot, and when I told him, he'd mention pain he'd had or an injury, and I would hold my hands to his back. One man complained of how his wife was acting, and the words "she's going through menopause" popped out of my mouth. This information threw him for a loop. I seldom told people I had these gifts unless I was guided to do so, but often I'd say something to them that they would later tell me made a big difference for them.
After graduating from the college, I was lined up to start working at a brand-new barbershop in downtown Minneapolis. Construction delays on this new shop forced me to find a temporary job. When I called the director of my school for help, he had just gotten off the phone with the shop at the University of Minnesota. They needed someone for just a few weeks. How perfect was that? Little did I know...
A few days after I started at the university barbershop, I got a call from my friend Ginny telling me her fourteen-year-old stepson had fallen eighteen feet and landed on his head. He had been flown from Nebraska to the University of Minnesota hospital, where he was in a coma with a horrible prognosis. A nurse told the family that if the boy ever came out of the coma he would remain a "vegetable," so she advised them to put him in a nursing home to save themselves time and money.
Ginny asked if I would do healings on her stepson. After getting the go-ahead from my inner voice, I started seeing him every day. The hospital was literally one block from the barbershop I was working at, so I could walk down on my lunch break and after work.
On the second day that I was channeling healing to him, I felt a presence standing behind me, though I knew I was alone in the room. Then I heard a voice say, "Please heal the speech part of my brain. I want to talk again." I slowly turned around to see who was in the room, and there, leaning up against the wall, was a spirit, or so I thought. I asked him who he was, and he said he was the soul that lived in this body and that he wanted to speak again so could I please work on the speech part of his brain. I asked him how he could be out of the body if he was its soul, and he said that souls can leave their bodies anytime they want. He also said that when he stepped out of his body, his body felt no pain, so he was stepping out often to give his body a break.
I was very surprised by this but very grateful because even though his body was in a coma, I could still communicate with him. Every day when I went to channel healing to him, his soul would come out of his body and talk to me. He told me when his head hurt or knees were in pain.
This is how I learned I could communicate directly with souls. It was a life-changing experience for me because ever since then when I've channeled a healing to someone, I've communicated with their soul.
Six weeks later, when it was time for me to leave the university barbershop and head downtown to the new shop, this young man left the hospital walking and talking on his own. The whole experience was a huge turning point for both of us, and I gained so much wisdom from it. (You can read more about this healing in my book Echoes of the Soul.)
The boy's soul was completely aware of everything while his physical body was in the coma. The soul was somewhat detached emotionally; it looked at the body almost the way we look at our cars. We use our cars to get us around in life, just as the soul uses the body to get around. We are in our cars but not part of our cars, which is similar to the way a soul inhabits a body. We humans are in charge of where our cars go; our souls are in charge of where our bodies go. My life and work changed forever because of this experience.
For You to Think About
What Are the Desires in Your Heart?
Do you have dreams that you're afraid to pursue? Does a lack of money hold you back? Do you worry about what people will say if you pursue your dreams?
When I was a senior in high school, I told my dad I wanted to learn how to cut hair and help people feel good about themselves. He said there was no way his daughter was going to be a barber; I was going to be a college graduate.
I'm glad that my father forced me to attend college. Those years are some of the most memorable of my life. But doing what he wanted me to do didn't get rid of my own desires. Years later, when I applied to barber school, I was afraid to tell my dad. I still felt a bit like I was betraying him.
Do you have people in your life whose opinions you put first? Think about the dreams and desires you've never pursued. People ask me all the time for psychic advice on what they're meant to be doing. We get so caught up in what we've been told we should be doing that we bury our dreams deep inside. We can lose sight of them for years on end.
Get out your journal and write about what you love to do. As the fellow at the AA meeting told me, look into your heart. Forget about the money it will take to make it happen. Forget about not having the time. Forget about your age, and tune out the critical or authority figure voices in your head.
Think back to when you were a kid. What did you think you would be when you grew up? I once heard someone say that people usually know what they want to be when they are children. When I was a little girl, I would come home from school, line up all my dolls on my bed, and write everything on my chalkboard that I had learned that day. I couldn't wait to grow up and be a teacher. As it turns out, teaching psychic and healing classes has always been the most satisfying part of my work.
A dear friend of mine went back to college when he was sixty-seven. He was thrilled at the idea of getting his diploma by the time he turned seventy-one. "Now that my children are grown," he said, "and I don't have to scramble to support them, I can do what I want to do."
Another good friend decided at age forty-five to pursue her lifelong dream of being an attorney. She worked her way through night school. She didn't care that it was going to take a long time; she was just excited about finally following her dream.
Are you happy in your job, or would you rather be doing something else? If your answer is, "Something else," ask God for help overcoming the obstacles your mind sets up.
Find out what you need to do to reach your goal. Become willing to ask others for help. Take one step at a time -- one baby step, if need be -- but do take those steps. Be as persistent as I was with the barber school owner.
Our dreams are ours for a reason. Look where pursuing mine got me.
*Excerpted from Look For the Good & You'll Find God: The Spiritual Journey of a Psychic and Healer Copyright 2008 by Echo Bodine. Printed with permission of New World Library, Novato, CA.
Echo Bodine is the author of Look For the Good & You'll Find God: The Spiritual Journey of a Psychic and Healer and several other bestselling titles. She is a renowned psychic, spiritual healer, teacher, and radio host. Her website is www.echobodine.com.
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