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Why bother?

As I am quickly approaching my 65th year I ask myself what is important to hang on to and what may do me well to let go of. What is the best part of me, my life, and what prohibits me from living life more fully? What do I know to be true and what have I clung to that is not? “Time’s a wasting!” as they say and my desire is to be the person God created me to be. For it is only from that place that my life will make a difference in this world.

Enough! Enough of these negative thoughts that try to convince me that I am not enough. I always have been! But somehow, after the age of 3, we all become bombarded by messages that tell us otherwise. They grow on us like vines meant to enhance the beauty of the house, but eventually take over, barely exposing the original construction, itself.

It has taken me a life-time to finally understand it is only through my own soul-work that I will return to my authentic, enough, self. Did others contribute to the wounds that caused me to build my protective wall (the false-self)? Yes. Did circumstances influence how I perceived life? Yes. But no “other” is going to bring me home.

They say, “home is where the heart is”. Spiritually, the “Heart” does not mean the emotions (though it includes our emotions). If refers to our inner orientation, the core of our being. At the core of my being, my authentic self, is indwelling Love…..a Power Greater than myself……The Divine Source. Yes…..above me, before me, beyond me, AND in me. That part of me always has been, always will be.

But of course, knowing it and accessing it are two different things. I’ve been a master at reading scripture, leading bible studies and learning from the great mystics, but I’ve also felt the loneliness of needing more. I tire of operating from the self that is addicted to the behaviors I’ve lived all these years. I know where I want to be, yet I find myself too often on that slippery slope.

I’ve tried many avenues to finding my way “home”. Some have cast a beautiful light, illuminating my path and for that I am so grateful. But the one that has become my non-negotiable is Centering Prayer (C.P.). I’ve known of C.P. since 2001, and although I was intrigued by this Christian form of meditation, I was resistant, thinking I was not spiritually deep enough for it. In 2010, my spiritual journey felt as though it had come to a halt. I was discerning that the rigidity of my beliefs had put God in a box, a God who was out there and though I was told a loving God, this God was disappointed by all that I was not. That was my cross-roads. I could either continue in a belief system made me “less than” or open myself to an experiential relationship with God that told me otherwise. I knew the answer was in the silence of Centering Prayer.

So it’s been 6 years now that I’ve made this commitment to the practice of C.P., 20 minutes, once or twice a day. (I am committed but not militant.) Why bother? Because its the only way I know of “to be still and know”…..know that I am enough; that the Spirit of God is always there waiting for me and that God does not love me because I am good, but because God is good.

Is it always easy to show up? No! They say we are always “beginners” as meditators because each time we sit, it is like starting over. Our minds race, we feel an itch here, or noises out there. But I’m finally learning (most of the time-wink), not to judge myself . My intention to be transformed into the woman God created me to be and to desire the Love of God, is enough.

So what am I going to hang on to? Loving kindness…..for myself and for others. I’m going to continue this inner-work and pray that my life will positively influence the world in which I live.

What am I going to let go of? Believing I need to do everything right. It’s impossible and I must embrace the Love that says, “I’m enough.”

What is it for you? Whether you’re 20 or 90, all of us have something that keeps us from an authentic, Love-filled life. What are you willing to let go of, in order to fully embrace what is important to hold on to?

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