The Kingdom of God (6)
Feb 03, 2019
The Kingdom of God (6)
“Very early in the morning,
While it was still dark,
Jesus got up,
Left the house and
Went off to a solitary place,
Where he prayed.”
Our ego is the driving force in most of our lives. That is the portion that claims that happiness is the ‘next greatest thing’ – pay raise, bigger car, still bigger house, you name it – we obtain or achieve – until that ‘next greatest thing’ no longer does it. Then we need still more money, still bigger car, still bigger house – and it never ends until we die from a heart attack, still believing that the next best thing will surely make us happy.
It is a proven fact that taking time to meditate, or taking the time to ground ourselves to our core self helps to reduce stress and wear and tear on our physical bodies, and calms our restless minds. Usually these ‘mindfulness’ exercises do create a calmer life and allow a certain amount of satisfaction with life. But unless a deeper meaning of life is found, we will find ourselves wondering ‘Is that all there is?’ as we find our life drawing to a conclusion.
The type of meditation or prayer that is mentioned in the gospels aims at a very different pattern. When we truly spend time letting ourselves just sit in the presence of the possibility that there is a God, when we learn to let God who is Love flow through us into the world, we will find ourselves becoming relaxed in a very different manner. As we spend the time, a sense of the ‘Kingdom of God’ enters into our presence. This feeling of presence (any other name seems inadequate) calms the soul and makes all of life more joyful, no matter what appearances make themselves known. These moments build a buffer that takes the battering rams of life and makes them seem to be just part of the ebb and flow of life that all participate in.
But this does not happen overnight. It takes time to feel and become attuned to that underlying vastness that undergirds all of life; that unseen realm that supports all that is. It is too easy to just drift along day-to-day; not recognizing the goodness and joy that fills all, only seeing the outward appearances of the world.
All seems fine; then the vicissitudes that lie just under the surface rise up and mock us in our certitude so that our world apparently crumbles around us. Life flows in ebbs and tides; we have good times and some not-so-good times, and some absolutely terrible times. The death of a loved one; illnesses that scream pain at us; the agonies of addiction or even just plain boredom; the rising specter of the end of our life as we age – all these and so many more disrupt our life and cause those waking hours in the middle of the night. Somehow spending all that time doing something that apparently has no relationship to our everyday life seems so futile; how and why do we still keep spending the effort?
We will talk about the ultimate benefits that accrue if we only spend the sincere effort next week.
Oh God of Love, open my eyes to see and taste Your very Being of Love, not only during those moments of peace and quiet where we quiet our minds, but during the noisy and clanging moments of everyday life wherein we find ourselves dwelling. Open my heart, help me to become a child again where I can just trust in Your goodness and let myself just be. Grant me the joy of Your awareness that fills my very being at all times, but too often remains hidden behind my personal ideas of self.
I surrender myself into Your Core of Love.