This earth is the place Souls come to expand and grow, learning our lessons through choice and consequence as we travel our individual paths. Consider terra firma a great big testing ground for every conceivable idea and notion we creative beings can conjure. It is the place we come to learn that what we have wrought has repercussions, both good and bad. The resultant fallout or reward inherent in our evaluation or lack thereof is how we polish our Souls. This process provides the development of the human spirit and is the reason for this planet’s existence.
Because errors in judgment and mistakes are inevitable here, it’s important to remember that we are all, every single one of us, going to make many, many errors as we stretch our wings. We surely couldn’t grow if we didn’t venture beyond what we already know to be true. This schooling of trial and error is absolutely necessary before we get to graduate to the instantaneous manifestation that resides in the ether.
Given that blunders are inevitable in a human laboratory such as this, it is completely logical to not only assume, but to know and accept that we are going to hurt each other. How could we not when we are all for the most part just doing our best to figure life out, to grow beyond where we stand today, both in comprehension and our reactions to life itself?
As for those who aren’t seeking growth, trust me, they will. Sooner or later, every one of us has a day of reckoning. Pain is the great teacher. Those who aren’t seeking enlightenment and yearning for a better way surely are living a hell of their own making, no matter exterior material attainments.
Sometimes the folks that vex and challenge us the most are our greatest teachers, viewed in this logical light. Rest assured that if someone is driving us nuts, it’s because they come bearing the gift of wisdom on the other side of the confusion. When we stop to grow still enough to contemplate instead of being reactive, we can take a moment to ascertain our lesson.
Two questions came to me years ago that I do my best to remember to apply to every confusing conundrum life throws at me. They are sequential in their nature, one follows the other. The first question is this: What did I come here to this person or situation to learn? After I have the answer to that question, the second question follows: Does my thinking and conclusion serve myself and others? If the answer is not gracious and kind, I know I need to reassess my thinking and act accordingly. These two questions insert heart led reason into the madness of modern life. They give us enough time to stop and analyze the heart of the matter in a deeper way.
One thing that dawned on me at around the same time that the two questions presented themselves is this: People don’t do things to us, per say. They simply act out their vision of the world on the environment and the people around them. Hurt people act in hurtful ways. Angry people spew venom. Loving folks spread encouragement and care.
Whatever a person values is perpetuated in their relationships and their lives. Knowing that each person is simply acting out the extent of their learning thus far takes the sting out of the interactions that don’t turn out as we’d hoped. It isn’t personal. It is simply a reflection of that person’s comprehension of life thus far.
Knowing it isn’t an individual affront aimed at us specifically allows forgiveness to step into the picture as a salve for our Souls. After studying A Course In Miracles for more than a decade, I know with all my heart that forgiveness is the key to comprehension. It is the element that allows us to let go of the hurt, to see with clearer perception, to realize the result would have occurred regardless of the recipient.
Contrary to popular belief, forgiveness isn’t a gift we give to the other party, although its healing capacity is felt by all. Forgiveness is the mercy we show ourselves that allows us to rise above the muck we’ve been mired in. Forgiveness can be broken down in just this way: Forgiveness: For = Meant for someone. Give = To provide or grant a gift. Ness = A state of being. So, forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves to grant a peaceful state of being. It provides relief and release. Forgiveness is a gift from God given to us to soothe our hearts and minds that provides us peace when we utilize it.
The beauty of forgiveness is that it reveals the true nature of God. Everything God does is balanced. Therefore, all are healed in the process. Our Great Creator doesn’t play favorites. He simply asks us to do our best to imbue grace, and then steps in to lend His power. He shows us exactly what magnificent expansive goodness is created by showing kindness and compassion. Without reservation, every heart involved is lightened and lifted.
One of my favorite quotes from Christ within A Course In Miracles states simply this: No act of Love is every wasted. Even if at the time the impact doesn’t seem evident, rest assured it is held within the heart of the recipient. It rests like a beautiful flower waiting for a little more water in order to begin to bloom. It is a seed that has begun to sprout, even though it hasn’t broken the surface of the soil as of yet. Love is the seed we plant within our hearts, nurtured along by forgiveness.
We all process in our own way and time. Sometimes it takes a little while for graciousness to sink in, especially in hearts battered by pain. Other times, the effects are spontaneous and in those moments our hearts heal instantaneously to expand with hopeful joy and we are left feeling lighter and much more meaningful in the process.
In these moments, we understand our true nature as human beings. We see our future and our potential as benevolent, beautiful, limitless children of God.
And the best part? This good juju is addictive. It also gathers momentum as it grows. Try it and see. You’ll remember who we are…right along with me.
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