I’ve spent a lot of time, these last three weeks, in silence – being still with my thoughts. I also spent a lot of time binging on Netflix in between. I was trying to work through a particular pattern in my life that I was sick of repeating!
But, I also had to recognise that I couldn’t spend 8 hours a day just in inner work. I would reach a point where I was tired of thinking and contemplating, and wanted to be mindless and entertained. It felt like too much to try to work it all out.
What was I wrestling with?
My inner life – the imagery that when you squeeze an orange – what comes out is orange juice. When you squeeze a lemon – you get lemon juice. If you are walking along, carry your cup of coffee and someone bumps you, what gets spilt is coffee. Because that’s what the cup is carrying.
So – if I get squeezed or bumped – what pours out of me?
If everything that I see in my external world – my material life – is a reflection of how I am on the inside — what am I expressing?
Is this really how I want to show up in life? Is this the best version of me, or simply the dark night of the soul before transformation?
I was reminded of verses such as this one —
They will neither hunger nor thirst, nor will the desert heat or the sun beat down on them. I AM has compassion on them will guide them and lead them beside springs of water.— Isaiah 49:10
Right now, if I am honest with myself and my spiritual situation – I don’t feel I am being led beside springs of water. It feels a lot more like “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death” like the desert sun is beating down on me and hasn’t stopped beating down on me for days, months and years.
And this brought me back to the question – what if this isn’t happening to me, but for me?
If I truly loved and felt compassion for myself, would I allow myself the opportunity to face this situation and grow from it, rather than trying to avoid it?
I ask this question a lot to clients – especially when they are feeling sorry for themselves. And so, using the very same techniques that I would use with a coaching client, I asked myself – what if what you are experiencing is simply the opportunity which is being given to you to see – clearly – what is on the inside?
What if all of this that you are experiencing – this manifestation on the outside of what you are truly holding onto on the inside – is happening for you to open up your spiritual eyes and truly see?
I know from coaching that we have multiple intelligence centres – we are truly fearfully and wonderfully made! My head may be full of judgment and over-thinking. My heart, on the other hand, is capable of feeling compassion and love – for myself as well as for others. And that compassion, when I step into it, allows me to feel, to forgive and to cut myself a little slack.
This forgiveness is essential in releasing and letting go of all the baggage and all the gunk. If I am getting squeezed and pushed, and what is emerging from me emotionally and in my exterior world is gunk – then what I am holding on the inside is simply garbage and gunk.
And it’s only through doing the inner work of forgiveness and release that I can free up space and make more room for Divine Love.
There’s no room for Divine Love if I insist that I want to continue carrying all my baggage with me! There’s no space for Divine Abundance if I insist that I want to be tied to the past.
How can I expect present success if I won’t let go of the past success?
The aha moments came when I realised that I was busy clinging to past success stories, rather than looking for new and present success stories. I was mourning what was not, rather than making room for what could be.
I had allowed bitterness and envy to take root in my heart!
And when life squeezed me – what I was showing were anger and impatience! When pushed I was frustrated and depressed.
If my finances lately have been a reflection of my inner self – then I have forgotten all about Divine Abundance!
But you, I AM, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.— Psalm 86:15
I believe, without a shadow of a doubt, that each and every one of us on earth is made in God’s image. For me, this means that we all have the capacity – without a shadow of a doubt – to be totally compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
Those are not words that I would use to describe myself these past months.
And so, between Netflix binges, I spent a lot of time looking at what I was full of. It wasn’t as pretty as I would like to make believe that it is!
Those who know me, know how much work I’ve already done with Ho’oponopono, forgiveness and release.
But I had to finally admit that I hadn’t done enough! I had only ever done enough to ease the pain. But I hadn’t gone deep enough to truly root out the problem.
A few weeks ago, Bonnie said “allow your pain to push you until your passion is strong enough to pull you“.
And I finally realised what this was about for me.
Transplant & transformation
I had been allowing my pain to push my work internally on forgiveness and release. I would allow myself to deal with specific pain points. But I wasn’t passionate enough about my personal journey and healing to truly deal with my self-worth and have a good look at what I was truly full of. I was only doing outpatient surgery, rather than allowing myself to go in for a heart transplant.
26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you; and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh.Ezekiel 36:26
I finally had to accept that what I needed was to empty myself of all the garbage I had been carrying with me (brings to mind that sack that is carried along in Pilgrim’s Progress – although I have to admit, I don’t actually remember the story!). I need to simply allow myself to be emptied of me – and allow myself to be refilled with the Divine version of me that is connected to love, compassion, and has a heart of flesh!
I want to be that person that when they are bumped or pushed is still compassionate and kind to others!
This doesn’t mean allowing others to walk over me (I’ve already tried that version of me and gotten myself walked over, trampled, and exhausted, serving no one and living as a martyr). But I want to understand what it means to truly love others – unconditionally. Especially what it means to love the with tough love.
To have the tough conversations – with love and kindness.
I AM is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. I AM is good to all; having compassion on all he has made.— Psalm 145:8-9
Gracious & compassionate
I want to be that person that is gracious and compassionate.
When I am frustrated and short-tempered, I want to be slow to anger and rich in love. When I am squeezed and pushed by life’s trials and challenges – I want compassion for myself and others to seep out of me!
But reaching that place is not as easy as I would like it to be. I continue to work on myself – and then — as I climb the spiral stairway of personal development and growth — I keep returning to the point where I have to rediscover that aspect of me that I never quite finished dealing with last time I reached that point of the turn!
I want to finally be done!
I want to have finally dealt with things on a deep enough level that there is nothing left to work on in this particular area of my life. That moment when I have finally emptied out all my baggage and garbage, and be just full of love and compassion.
And yet I struggle with my humanity and shadow self.
What I’ve discovered these past weeks is that part of the problem is my rejection of who I am and how I am. My failure to love me EXACTLY as I am — to see that I a loved and Divine — is exactly what stops me from being able to do this.
Therefore, as I AM’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.— Colossians 3:12
What you resist – persists.
Because I resist accepting that I am angry – and addressing the root cause of “what am I really angry about”… I fail to deal with the anger!
I want the anger to just miraculously be gone. Like a magic wand.
Now – I realise that in some cases, this is so. But in other cases, we are called to do the deep work. We are called to look inward and see exactly how we are — so that we can be more empathic to our fellow man.
So that we learn humility!
That humility that says there but for the grace of God go I.
So, here I sit… emptying myself of all that I have learned and held onto — so that I can be refilled with living water. Painfully drawing out the stagnant, so that the flowing can overflow.
What are you learning this week?