“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8: 31).
Did you ever try to run from the truth? Have you, or are you hiding something from your partner? Have you ever, or are you now living in denial about some negative behavior in your life?
Have you ever, or are you now not acknowledging the truth of your goodness, what you have to offer to others, the gift that you are?
We spend tremendous amounts of energy hiding from the truth. No wonder we’re so tired out at times. Once we acknowledge the truth, it’s like a heavy weight is lifted from our shoulders and we begin to know what it is to walk through life with a bit of a lilt in our step.
For years I hid the truth of who I was. I hid it from others and I hid it from myself. I lived in a prison of fear and struggle, fighting these feelings I had for those of my own sex. After all, if I was “one of those” I was told I was headed to hell! I will always remember the spring day when I first uttered those words out loud: “I am gay.” I was shaking. I was so frightened; . . . and yet exhilarated at the same time as I felt myself being freed. And you know what? After I said it, the world didn’t come to an end. As a matter of fact it felt like a two ton weight was lifted off of me. The truth set me free.
Perhaps there is a truth within that you are struggling to acknowledge. It might be a negative behavior that you’re hiding, or it might be realizing and acknowledging your giftedness. Perhaps it might be good to sit and feel the weight, the pressure, all the energy that you’re spending hiding that truth. Do you really want to live this way? The first step to living more fully is acknowledging the truth. In A.A. they say: “We ADMITTED we were powerless over alcohol.” It is the admission, the acknowledgement that is the first step to freedom. The truth will set us free!
Luke 6: 36-38
Holding on tight?
Sometimes we have a tendency to hold on tight. We hold on to people, places, things. We protect, hoard, worry, feed resentments, judge, . . . and in the process we fail to live. When we’re so concerned about holding on to what we have, when we’re so concerned about never forgiving this or that person, when we’re so concerned with controlling – we fail to live and enjoy the moment.
Be compassionate, don’t judge, forgive and don’t worry about holding on to what you have but give, give, give! And in the process we will experience life again! When we cling, even to our judgments, we are not free. It’s like the story of the monkey who discovered a banana inside a hole in a tree. He reached in to grab the banana and got stuck. He stayed stuck for hours, trapped and unable to move; until he realized that if he just let go of the banana and relaxed his hand he could be free.
Sometimes you and I are holding on so tightly to people, places and things – even our own hurts – and in the process we stay stuck and miss the glory of living! When we let go, we’ll discover an abundance of bananas free for the taking.
Do you like the person that you are?
I think most of us would answer yes to that question, in some ways; and no, in others. All of us have things about ourselves that we’d like to change. Some of us have huge things that we’d like to change.
Do you believe that change is possible?
The good news is, it is! Probably the biggest thing that works against us actually changing is not believing that it can be done. All of us have been there. Again, I look back to my experience as a smoker. When I smoked, I really was concerned about my health and in that sense, even though I really liked to smoke, I wanted to quit. But I simply could NOT imagine myself going through a day without smoking. For me, it was a matter of beginning to visual myself as free, breathing in fresh air, not coughing . . . and getting excited about it.
I see three steps to transfiguration:
1. Imagine yourself changed. Imagine what your life will be like for you without this thing or behavior weighing you down. . . .and get excited about it!
2. Call on a Power greater than yourself to give you the power that you feel you don’t have to change.
3. Do what YOU can to cooperate with this Power. Change a routine, get a meditation book, take a walk, meditate, have some fun – whatever helps in even slightly shifting your normal routine.
Probably the most important thing that I need to remember is this: Don’t stop trying! Not matter how many times I may fail, get up and keep trying again. Each day is a new day and holds out the possibility of transfiguration!