|Image: "Woodland: The Edge of the Forest" by Tim Blessed|
Copyrighted photo used by permission.
Days fraught with tension or fear, are not taken one day at a time, as recovery suggests. Instead, the following help:
1. Staying present, going through rough days
fifteen minutes at a time. This cages the dragons of fear and false belief, not letting them overwhelm us. We become grounded by the fact that most fears are imagined, not experienced. Our mental bag-gage makes our situations appear worse. It does not project reality.
2. Determine the needs beneath our fears and limiting beliefs. If we are prone to passivity, our fear may be someone will get angry if we speak our truth. Our need in this case may be for respect or to self-express. When we realize we are simply presenting a different per-spective and are not asking others to agree, the idea of speaking up is no longer frightening.
to a city three hundred miles (482.8 km) away. Not a frequent event. Emotional safety and tranquility are key to fortifying us against stress. This brings us to two spiritual disciplines that create distance from anxiety and fear.
3. The first is talking to God: prayer.
There is more to this disci-pline than meets the mind. When we talk, we don't quickly mutter our thoughts, shake the other person's hand and leave. No, we pause. We let the other person have his say. We listen. Then, there's our re-sponse to his comments. We go back and forth several times. So it is when praying.
Be still, and know He is God. (Psalms 46:10) We want to hear his voice. Some-times it helps writing out our prayers. It forces us to focus. We are as strong, spiritually, as we are in our pray-er. If we are frail in this area, we are weak in our relationship with Him.
Spiritual disciplines are the chaise lounge for our souls. They create a vacation for our inner selves. They free us from the carnival of distractions that vy for attention. We become liberated from the demons of distraction like the internet, texting, gaming, spending too much time with others or watching TV.
The other discipline...
4. Meditating, which is listening to God. It is a calming practice that quiets us emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
While exercising this discipline---we want to look at the orchestration of events in our lives. We try to discern His message woven within what is happening in our lives. When our minds are busy with urgent but not important tasks, we can become deaf to His voice. We are spiritually confused, with no clue to God's message for us.
Understanding His will---guided by the compass of His quiet voice, moves us from the ghetto of confusion and fear. We walk confidently guided by Him.
Led by healthy principles, we walk at a surer, gentler pace."I call my sheep and they hear my voice and follow me." John 10:27
"If thy law [and His guidance] had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction." Psalms 119:92Today's Gratitudes:
1. I will invest in personal growth today. It's refreshing, feeding my soul through material that improves my life.
2. I've made time for fun. When emotionally taxed, I've learned to treat myself "extra specially." Tonight, I am going to see the SF Giants play with my family. Can't wait.
3. Before taking in a baseball game I will cycle at Chabot Regional park.
4. I am thankful for knowing a God who loves, guides and encourages me.
5. I wrote an honest letter, sharing my feelings and needs. I am glad I enjoy the benefits of saying what I want and don't want. It is one of the skills that needs to be a part of our lives as adults.
6. I love the hope God gives me. Again:
How About You?Now faith is a well-grounded assurance of that for which we hope, and a conviction of the reality of things which we do not see. Hebrews 11:1
1. What do you do to develop your spirituality?
2. Does having a connection with a Higher Power sound like an odd concept?
3. Would you be interested in connecting with the God of your understanding? You can find out more about this in, "Getting through the Day." You can read it here.