“You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.”
“To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.”
“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”
“What draws people to be friends is that they see the same truth.
When I speak of God, when I am talking about a Power greater than ourselves, I am not talking about the rhetoric or doctrine of God, but our experience of God.
I read the Bible a lot. I read it because it speaks of experiencing God. Do we consciously speak or write or even think about that in our day to day lives?
I can look back and define my life on earth by the relationship and the growth of the relationship I have with God.
When I was young, in school and in Sunday school, a face was painted on God. A face that sometimes I could understand and love and sometimes the face was one I would not like. A face that people would paint with their words as if they had physically seen it and better yet could define with physical attributes. A face that people would paint with such accuracy in their minds that it left no room for the experience of God. Partially this has to do with what we are able to conceptualize at age 4 or 10 or 12. It is hard to understand something our brain is not yet able to comprehend. Or can we?
I think about this lots because I have 4 children. I have four very loving compassionate caring children. I have thought about the stories we tell our children about God. Why are we telling them about God – our understanding or someone else’s interpretation of who or what God is- instead of teaching them to experience God? Experience a power greater than ourselves? Perhaps because we are not fully experiencing God ourselves.
In all the world their are no two people exactly alike even identical twins have some differences. The person next to you in church or conversing with you in the grocery store will not share the exact same thought as you do on any one thing. You may agree on something but the why you agree will be specific to you.
What I experience in relation to smelling a flower and what you experience will be different.
So how do we begin to move from living with a definition of God and that belief to experiencing God, or the Power greater than ourselves? We start by not limiting God to what and who and where and when, we start by beginning to include in our idea of God that it is an experience to exist with God that it is a relationship with a power greater than ourselves. This is where it goes from I think, to I know. Knowing something, truly knowing something, is not a list of factually based bits of information, doctrine, or rhetoric, it is a feeling or an instinct. Knowing has a spiritual connection. We “know” this because within the definition of deep knowing comes the experience of not being able to describe it in human understandable terms. To the extent that many of us, myself included, say, “I just know…”
Paul speaks of spirituality a lot in Corinthians. In the 1st letter to the Corinthians, chapter 2, verses 6-16 in particular he addresses Wisdom From The Spirit.
Verse 13-14 says “This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them because they are spiritually discerned.”
If I speak of gratitude and talk about it in spiritual terms it is akin to living with and in the experience of gratitude, the feeling of experiencing it.
If I speak of gratitude in terms of definitions and language it limits gratitude.
The same holds true of God. If I speak of God in spiritual terms it is akin to living with and in the experience of God, the feeling of experiencing it.
If I speak of God in terms of definitions and language it limits God. Who are we to limit God? And in truth, how can we limit a power greater than ourselves?
As we begin to look to experiencing the God of our Understanding -a Power greater than ourselves- instead of explaining and defining God, we begin to feel God in us and see God in others so much more.
Today Let the Experience of God begin to grow in you. For we are 3 dimensional living beings; physical, mental and spiritual in our nature. As our spirituality grows and blooms the other two aspects of our lives change and grow. Share the Experience!
©Adrienne McLeod 2011
How often do we recognize our relationships? How do we recognize and deepen our relationships. When we make a phone call, send a text, give a hug or a smile these are all actions that we do when we have a relationship with another human being. How often do we consciously engage in our relationships? Are we present in that moment specifically thinking about our input into the relationship as we make those actions?
Are we attentive in the moment when speaking with someone we have a close relationship to? Often it seems we are not. We can not be actively listening if we are talking over another person. Living our lives consciously, actively, with a purpose, depends a great deal on living the moment and focusing on now; giving our full attention to it.
What about our relationship with God? Do we actively seek out our relationship with God? Or is our relationship with God just one in passing? Do we give our full attention to our relationship with God?
Any relationship whether with an animal, an employer, a spouse, a child or a sibling is greatly strengthened by consciously being present in that relationship. It is not the quantity of time but the quality and the attentiveness while we are engaging actively in the day to day aspects of our relationships that strengthen our relationships. The same holds true for our relationship with God.
My relationship with the God of my understanding has been a gradual one, like any other relationships of importance it has deepened over time. Deepening in trust, faith, intensity, respect and gratitude. I am constantly being amazed by the power of the presence of God in my life. The more I am consciously aware, active and attentive and grateful in my relationship the stronger and more beautiful it becomes.
I remember most of my life, my Dad spending time in his relationship with the God of his understanding. I remember the time he spent after church when he would sit and contemplate and think. I remember first thing in the morning the time he would get up and read and then spend time meditating and conversing with God. I remember the time spent writing sermons. It took me a long time to understand the consistency of his routine. Wasn’t a relationship with God simply, “I believe “x”. Thank you for everything great and oh, by the way if you could help with this it would be great?”
I remember my my Mum, spending time reading, deepening her understanding of and relationship with the God of her understanding. Her time spent meditating in the energy of her spiritual life and sometimes her doubt and questioning in it lead her to an even deeper sense of the all encompassing nature of God.
With them both, there was much quiet time spent in their conscious relationship with God. I often wondered what they were thinking about in all that quiet. But I think about it now and I think perhaps it was listening to God, cultivating their understanding, becoming still enough to hear and understand. It was asking to understand His will for them and being attentive and active in their relationship with God. I have in them both ~ great teachers.
Developing a relationship with a person,means consciously taking the time to get to know them. Learning about them, trying to understand them, listening to them, sharing with them, being grateful to them, questioning what is not understood and actively listening to their answers. It means being attentive. It means consciously being present in the relationship. And so it is with our relationship with the God of our understanding.
©Adrienne McLeod 2011
When I took the photograph, Sacred Breath, that I posted on the web site today there was no recognition of what the image was that I was photographing. I looked up, the clouds looked puffy and full of rain and life and something whispered, “take the picture!” And so I did.
When I went to look at the photo I was astounded. Every time I have looked at it over the past few weeks I have thought, “Wow! This is so full of energy.” It is a powerful image for me. One second sooner or one second later and this image would not have been captured.
With spiritual growth and increase in gratitude and appreciation I have become more aware of what is beautiful and amazing around me and there is so much. The beauty of the creation that we live in is awesome and magical.
Quite a long time ago now, I watched a BBC mini series called “Brideshead Revisited” (not the remake that came out a few years ago in 2 hour form) this was a long series starring then lesser known Jeremy Irons and Anthony Andrews. In it there were some words that have never left me and to this day I can hear them…
“Sebastian” played by Anthony Andrews, said to “Charles”, played by Jeremy Irons, “The priest told Mummy that to truly appreciate something, you must try to paint it, and so Mummy did, but everything always came out this brownish color.”
When I think about that line, about what it means, it tells me that unless we are looking to be grateful and appreciate the beauty and miraculous things around us that our lives become mottled, dull, all blending into one, blurry.
I think in many regards in trying to describe in words, paint in color or capture on film the glory of our beautiful creation that we are blessed to be a part of, our appreciation grows. In being grateful we look for more to be grateful for. It is an exponential process of illumination and growth. The more we see, the more we find. The more we look, the more brilliant the colors become, the more beautiful moments we have.
As I meditate on the beauty and blessings of a split second opening of the shutter I can feel the very sacred, beautiful and spiritual love joy and positive energy that God holds for us.
May your day be blessed and joyful and may you be filled with the Sacred Breath that our Creator breathes into us every moment.
©Adrienne McLeod 2011
|Deep peace I breathe into you, O weariness, here:
O ache, here!
Deep peace, a soft white dove to You;
Deep peace, a quiet rain to you;
Deep peace, an ebbing wave to you!
Deep peace, red wind of the east from you;
Deep peace, grey wind of the west to You;
Deep peace, dark wind of the north from you;
Deep peace, blue wind of the south to you!
Deep peace, pure red of the flame to you;
Deep peace, pure white of the moon to you;
Deep peace, pure green of the grass to you;
Deep peace, pure brown of the earth to you;
Deep peace, pure grey of the dew to you,
Deep peace, pure blue of the sky to you!
Deep peace of the running wave to you,
Deep peace of the flowing air to you,
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you,
Deep peace of the sleeping stones to you!
Deep peace of the Yellow Shepherd to you,
Deep peace of the Wandering Shepherdess to you,
Deep peace of the Flock of Stars to you,
Deep peace from the Son of Peace to you,
Deep peace from the heart of Mary to you,
And from Briget of the Mantle
Deep peace, deep peace!
And with the kindness too of the Haughty Father
In the name of the Three who are One,
And by the will of the King of the Elements,
|The Dominion of Dreams : Under a Dark Star – Fiona MacLeod 1895|
- a meditation: for my beloved lewis (aseekingspirit.wordpress.com)
- Angels – Angel of Tranquility and Peacefulness (angelladytm.wordpress.com)