This morning after I dropped my son off at school I was driving through the snow-covered countryside, waiting for the sun to begin brightening the day. A thought occurred to me that I want to pass along: Maybe forgiveness is as simple as releasing the negative mental image we hold of another person.
It's the difference between rejecting the person ("he is so rude!") and naming the behavior ("boy, that was a rude comment"). When forgiveness arises, we realize that the image we were holding about that person isn't the full truth--there may be another, truer way we can see the person. We can say a quick prayer and ask to see the person as God sees him or her. That makes all the difference and things shift--because where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. :)
Asking for this mental freedom also gives our thoughts the breathing room to show us when we're actually projecting our own stuff onto the other person--maybe it's our own image we're seeing, pointing out places in us that are ripe for inner work in self-love and acceptance.
Friday, January 09, 2009
This morning as I was driving in to work I was thinking about my dogs, Georgie and Edgar, and how they must just sleep all day while I'm at work. I wondered what they think about, whether they talk to each other, what their inner days look like. From that thought I wandered into a sense of grateful appreciation for their presence--they add so much to my life!
Thinking of how much I value them and how much richness and love they add to our home, it occurred to me that I don't expect them to "do" anything in order to earn my love. Oh, sure, please don't pee on the carpet, Edgar. But overall, they don't have to work; they don't have to perform tasks; I simply love them for their presence, because they are.
If we are capable of that kind of love and appreciation for our fellow beings just because they are, is it such a stretch to think that what God loves most about us is not the amount of effort we expend in being Good (or how successful we may or may not be) but rather the fact of our being, that we are companions in this life, that we share this sacred moment and recognize and appreciate what we have? Sometimes I get these little glimpses and think this life of faith is probably much easier than I make it. Walk in the garden with God today. Or snore contentedly, sleeping in God's arms. Or muse about what you'll have for lunch with a glance toward the Divine, knowing that all Good is ours just because we are and because of whose we are.