I share today’s blog as a way of illustrating the beginning stages of spiritual discernment – learning to recognize the Divine call in action and learning how to discern the path of our highest good. While this discernment is nowhere near complete for me, I thought it of value to share the beginning stages for those who may be faced with similar life-direction questions.
The Wake up Call
The other day I’m paying bills and when I look at the respective balances in my savings and checking accounts, my heart dropped to the floor and a feeling of panic filled my body. Immediately, I went to the fear, “Dang it! Do I need to go out and get a “real” job?” I spent the next several hours contemplating all the places that might hire a 18 year veteran of ministry. How do you transfer ministry skills (spiritual direction, hands-on healing, etc.) to a real job….and could I even find something over minimum wage? Then I felt the tell-tale shut-down of overwhelm and despair and took a nap. ARGH! After my nap, I realized that I had fallen right into my own trap….I had indulged in fear. Isn’t this the very thing I teach my students and clients NOT to do. Teacher – back to the drawing board with you! So, I went directly to the only place I know to find persistent and reliable peace, clarity and comfort…..and that is GOD.
Pray Pray Pray
So, since the bill-paying day, I have been praying my head off. I have placed the questions before God: What am I supposed to do? Do you want me to get a “real” job? Give me direction. Give me clarity. And in between my begging and pleading, I have been taking time to journal, meditate, chant, practice yoga. I know that the answer to the question is not in my little pea brain because if I go there, I will end up choosing something out of fear or panic or desperation. And, I know that God’s way is always better – more in line with what is in my highest good, somehow involving my gifts and somehow in service to others. I also know and have seen that God’s plan is always WAY better than what I could have come up with on my own…and that God’s plan leads to fulfillment, freedom, peace, joy. I also realized in the midst of my prayer that the “wake up” ultimately has NOTHING to do with money and EVERYTHING to do with God inviting me to greater expansion. I’m just not sure how much more expansion I can take!
A possible answer……and God will be the death of me!
Yesterday I’m at yoga practice and as our teacher invited, I had stated an intention in my heart as we began practice. My intention: clarity and direction. Well….I got WAY more than I bargained for. I am not yet able to share what showed up for me in practice as I have not yet tested it under the scrutiny of spiritual discernment (determining what is “of God” as opposed to what might be coming from my false-self or ego.) and I will not be making any decisions around what was revealed until sound discernment is accomplished and I am DARN SURE that this is coming from God and not from some other less benevolent place. What I will say is that what showed up is something that has come back around in my journey of discernment….over and over and over and over….and it is something that I have resisted, then tried in various degrees and various incarnations and ALWAYS met with failure. So why the heck is this what is showing up yet AGAIN!!!??? And, if it proves to be an authentic call and something that is coming from God……it will REALLY tick me off! And just so everyone knows that it is ok to initially say “no” to God (if this is coming from God) and that we do still have free will……this was exactly my initial response to the possibility of this “guidance and direction.” NO NO NO No Way. No How. You must be out of your dang mind! God, you will be the death of me if this is really what you want me to do. I’ve already done this WAY too many times….and it has always failed? Why would this be any different? I don’t want to do this! Why can’t you give someone else the hard jobs for once? NO NO NO NO NO!
Then God Laughed at Me
So, here I am shaking my fist at God, telling God there is no way I am doing this if this is what God wants me to do. Then God laughed at me and showed me the mantras I had been praying in my head as I was practicing yoga while waiting for clarity and guidance, Let it be done to me according to your word. Lord, I am not worthy to receive you but only say the word and I shall be healed. And then God showed me how (assuming this is authentically from God) this time would be different from the rest and why it might just work. Doh! For the record, my answer is still no….at least until I’m really sure this is from God, but in the end, I know that if my discernement proves that this is authentically where God is calling me, I know better than to say “no” because whether I want to do it or not, I know that if it is from God, it will be for not only my highest good but will be life-giving, nourishing and supportive to others and that if I do say “no” that God will hound me until I relent and say “yes” because as I have learned (the hard way) GOD IS A NAG! And in this….God just might be the death of me!
How might the things in your own life that stimulate fear be God inviting you to greater expansion, something more life-giving, healing or release?
What tools do you use to find comfort and clarity through times of fear?
How do you discern if “guidance” is of God as opposed to coming out of your own ego, fears, false perceptions or attachments?
Authentic Freedom Ministries