Will You Help God Help You? – Part 3

In the first two parts of this series, we began examining what kind of tools we could use to generate an awareness that will warn us when we’ve slipped back into the ways of the world – forgetting our path with God, and in the process, forgetting about God Himself. We know that the ways of the world are destructive. Indeed for many of us, it was the effects of that destruction that led us to the Lord in the first place.

Cultivating our awareness will prompt us to return to Him.

The first tool was exercising our free will to call on God for help and be willing to change our ways to maintain our connection with Him.

The second tool is God Himself. You’ve not been able to crawl out of the brainwashing you received as a child and you need the help of Someone who transcends that experience. That only Someone is God because He knows every detail of what has happened to you, how you have suffered, and what you have done to perpetuate that suffering. Only He can deliver you from all of that…

The third tool for consideration:

MEDITATION

We first encounter the word ‘meditate’ in the Bible just before Isaac encountered his bride-to-be (Rebekah):

And Isaac went out to meditate and bow down [in prayer] in the open country in the evening… Gn. 24:63 AMP

So we know that one of the Patriarchs meditated.

What else does the Bible say about meditation?

“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” Josh. 1:8 ESV

…the LORD has set apart for Himself him who is godly…Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Ps. 4:3, 4. NKJV (ESV translation substitutes the word ‘meditation’ with ‘ponder’ and the AMP says ‘commune with.’)

…whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy – mediate on these things. Phil. 4:8 NKJV

So meditation is not a foreign concept to God. We can see that we are commanded to contemplate the word of God continually for accurate action on our parts, which results in having a good life. Additionally, it is revealed to us that mediation is a tool for making the mind a ‘still place’ in order to be ready to commune with our Creator.

I purposely bring this up because there are many ‘Christians’ who claim that meditation is evil and opens up the mind for the devil to rush in and occupy the practitioner. Rubbish!

Mediation is a tool for slowing down the mind, creating an environment where we can watch the mind (and the voice in our head) at work – looking for the lies we’ve created so that we can unravel them. In other words, to ferret out the satanic template that was placed there so long ago, so that we can uproot it and the associated thoughts that bind us.

It’s also a very powerful tool to help us enter into the present moment, freeing us from the past to contemplate a different way of being. If we stop running from the present moment and ourselves, we can deconstruct our impressions of the past, and create a space where God can come and heal us from the associated self-inflicted meaningless meanings of hurt.

When we take care of our present moment, we can help bring fulfilling consecutive moments (i.e. our future).

Meditation helps you embrace whatever life if offering (whether or not it is attractive to you) and be happy in that moment – freeing you from the deluge of your opinions and the punishment you inflict upon yourself for not living up to them. In other words, it assists you in exorcising your false self so that your focus turns to what serves you, instead of what benefits the voice in your head.

The practice of meditation is for enlightenment, not for achieving some supernatural state. It’s for revealing the qualities of the spirit God placed within you – to get to know the real you. In a nutshell, it’s for unlearning what you think you know.

(This can be scary for those who are attached to their mask; yet ironically, it is this very camouflage that perpetuates their suffering.)

There are many methods of meditation. Let’s look at a simple one:

Get yourself a silent timer or one that plays a pleasant tone (like a bell or gong) at regular intervals. This sound is to remind you to stop chasing after your mind (which you’ll do repeatedly in the beginning) and return to just noticing what’s going on.

Find a quiet place, free from distractions – no music, media devices, or people.

(In the beginning you may squirm, as you will be uncomfortable being with yourself. So if you feel you absolutely need music, make it an instrumental so that you are not concentrating on the lyrics.)

Wear loose-fitting clothing and find a comfortable place to sit with your spine erect and eyes open. (There is a tendency to engage in your mental chatter when they’re closed.)

Be aware that the voice in your head will fight you every step of the way because you are threatening its very existence. It will use mental abuse, confusion, distraction and even sleep to stop you. In the beginning, it will be successful. Don’t judge yourself for giving in to the voice. You will gather strength and prevail with practice.

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THIS ENTIRE PROCESS IS TO BE KIND AND COMPASSIONATE WITH YOURSELF.

Set your timer for one minute. Add one minute every day until you are meditating one hour per day for the rest of your life.

(You will gain better focus, concentration and awareness, and lower blood pressure, peace, happiness, present-moment living the ability to stay on your God channel.)

Breathe slow and deep – in through the nose, out the mouth, relaxing after each exhalation.

(This makes you an active participant and acts as your point of focus. Focusing on breathing is the beginning of awareness. It is one of your God-connections. You can’t stop breathing. God breathes you. Breathing is a celebration of life.)

As you’re sitting still, staying with your breath, you may want to count your breaths to help you focus, or use guided imagery, e.g. ‘Breathing in, I accept life. Breathing out, I release love.’

Meditation looks easy but de-conditioning yourself is an arduous task. That voice in your head will declare war – flooding you with your fears and parading your strategies for hiding from life before you, to shame you for your weaknesses.

[We counterattack (with love) by not making excuses for what we’ve done. Instead, we just notice them, seeing what they are, looking for our motivations behind our doing them, and then discovering the false meanings behind those incitements. Then, we can watch our false and unworkable concepts we have about life and ourselves dissolve. We give ourselves love and compassion without condemnation, knowing that just like everybody else, we did our best to try to make our way in this world.]

The voice will tell you meditation is stupid and doesn’t work. It will also say that you’re stupid and this path is too hard. It will try to cajole you into returning to your distractions, addictions and / or isolation. The voice says your life is fine just the way it is (because it lives off of your suffering).

Then the criticisms come as it says you’re not ‘meditating right’ in order to keep you unconscious; and how better to do that than convincing you you’ve failed again. IT WANTS YOU DEAD IN THE HEAD.

But all you have to do is to lovingly and kindly acknowledge that you’ve been ‘thinking’ again, let the thoughts go, and take the next breath.

We are striving for a ‘mindless’ state, that is, one where we have successfully stripped away our false mind (the collection of our masks). Again, we don’t beat ourselves up for having them. Everyone has had the same brainwash. We can be rid of the voice by cutting off the power we’ve been giving it.

Everything that has worth (joy, peace and love) is foreign to our false mind. The sacred things live in the place where we are mindless – our spirit. When we gain awareness of the nature of our mind / spirit conflict, we can shift to our spirit side, end our reactionary state, and focus on our breath.

The quality of your life is entirely dependent upon the quality of the relationship you have with yourself and God.

Meditation is a way of bringing you into spiritual alignment. Doing so, you can see how you have been living your life and what that has cost you. Shedding that, you discover your highest and best path for reconnecting with God and for being at one with yourself.

If you’re putting off meditating, look to how you put off everything and commit to stepping over that.

If an old belief presents itself during mediation, ponder whether it’s true or not. If it’s a lie, let it go. Return to your breath until another one pops up, and then rinse and repeat. You can’t have too much truth. Peace comes with truth. So, if you’re experiencing stress and resistance in your mediation, celebrate! You’re on the cusp of a good, healthy change. Never give up and acknowledge yourself for your efforts.

You’re not trying to get something. You’re learning how to live in the present moment. Relax and let all your thoughts come, see them for what they are, and let them go. Instead of being afraid of what you might find, be curious. Your thoughts are not you; they are illusions.

If you suddenly quit meditating because you come up against something you think you can’t handle, don’t judge yourself. Simple recommit. Each time you meditate, try to step further into those thoughts and emotions that frighten you. With every crescendo, take a deep breath and look at the meanings you’ve attached to the thoughts and to your reactionary body sensations. Discover what made you think they were true and let them die when you see they have no healthy purpose.

If you sit still with fear, it will dissipate. If you find yourself squirming, you are on the verge of discovering another way you resist suffering. If you feel you are reaching a ‘breaking point,’ realize this process is not a punishment. Instead, you are on the edge of a life-transforming revelation. When you can face that fear and let it wash over you instead of running, your struggle will be over.

(You see, resistance is a force – showing up as confusion, self-criticism, self-sabotage, perfectionism, blaming, envy, busyness or procrastination. We usually meet resistance in life with more resistance (in the aforementioned forms) to try to neutralize it. If we fail, we judge ourselves. If we turn to meditation to discover our ‘resistance pattern,’ we’ll be able to drop it and open ourselves up to whatever happens next.)

During our practice, we do nothing but stay aware of our breath and notice our thoughts. In so doing, our minds lose their frenzied way of being while we are nurturing a growing field of clarity. We identify our habits and who we are trying to be when we try to hold our world together with unworkable beliefs and we discover the ways we punish ourselves when we think we fall short. Ultimately, we’ll be able to watch our negative patterns and let them unravel, having compassion for ourselves for thinking they would protect us.

There is nothing in your head that can really hurt you. It’s only the ignorance and denial you practice that brings pain. A thought is only an ephemeral wisp, and emotion is just a form of energy.

When a thought arises, instead of letting it hook you, (‘What if this thought is important?), question it: ‘Who would I be without this thought?’ Replace it with a thought that loves you.

Meditation is not about doing away with your thoughts. Your mind never ceases to think. But when you learn to stop giving them such importance, you’ll be able to let them go and return to the breath.

As we see the falsity of our thoughts, we lavish gobs of forgiveness upon ourselves for what we’ve ignorantly said or done to others or ourselves because of our belief in them. Then we stay on the hunt for other covert ways we’ve utilized and let them go as well.

Remember that you must implement your revelations. When you shed the person you think you are, and remodel your inner space so that it only holds love, joy and peace, your outer world will be filled with the same.

When we become open to every present moment, we become part of the unfolding life where there is no suffering. (There will always be painful moments but we don’t have to suffer by making life itself, the events in it and ourselves wrong.)

Celebrate by giving up having to know what will happen next. Appreciate your gift of life and the gift of yourself, and spread the love. That’s what living in the kingdom of God is all about.

Next time, last tools.
Goodnight and God bless.

Characteristics Of A Life When God Is Absent

The set-up:

In that last five previous posts, we’ve been exploring how the devil stole your soul by planting a thought in the heads of Adam and Eve, from which they deduced that they were not created perfect the way God made them. They passed this message onto their children and each successive generation has followed suit.

That message is personified in most people’s heads as the voice of ‘ego,’ a voice they’ve taken on as their own. This voice lies to you, leading you down a path where you define your life from a feeling that you’re inherently flawed, making you ‘unlovable’ and / or ‘not good enough.’ Subsequently, you berate yourself for those imaginary flaws that the unlovable voice in your head says you have. In shame you isolate yourself from your true self, others, and even from God Himself. Yes, it is you breaking off your spiritual connection that makes for an absent God.

Your life mirrors what is going on in your head, which puts you continually on the run from the ‘bad things’ that you think are going on in and around you. Thus, you cannot see that it is you creating that inner and outer environment. And you wear yourself out trying to wear a mask that you hope others will accept. It lll eads to lethargy, isolation, physical illness and violence.

The violence stems from your resistance against the world you perceive, and you make yourself a victim to relieve you from having to take responsibility for your life. You begin to identify with the harsh criticisms hurled at you by that voice: ‘Yes, I just don’t have what it takes;’ i.e. you are defining yourself as a loser and manifest that for everyone to see; and see it they do…

Characteristic #1: Suspended animation

In other words, you’re living life (if you want to call it that) outside of real time. The voice helps you do this by stealing your time, robbing you from the only time in which reality exists – in the present moment. It does that by continually pummeling you with the events of your past (primarily your version of it: your Life Story). As it immerses you in the past, it tells you that you are your past. So, your life becomes a reflection of your childhood and you become preoccupied in trying to fix that inner wounded child’s problems.

We chase our own tails, reliving what we think are the events of our past, over and over – giving them a little more oomph with each revolution.

Not only does our ‘dark mind’ use the past to control us, but it also dangles the hope of a better future in front of you – again to keep you from living in the present moment. In addition, the only place we can experience God is in present time.

(The voice also beats you over the head with what it says are the sins of your past, so that you will be too ashamed to seek Him out anyway.)

Your only real and ongoing sin is living in suffering, and throwing your precious life away. But you know what? Christ has already died and rose again so that you could gain forgiveness for any transgression in your past, and He is willing to help you retrieve your present:

“Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder the things of the past. Behold, I will do something new, now it will spring forth; will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.” Is. 43:18, 19. NASB

“I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins.” Is. 43:25 NKJV

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good – not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.) Mt. 11:28 – 30. AMP

God never intended for you to live a burdensome life, trapped in some illusory past. He knows that when you continually put your mind in front of your eyes, you can only give Him your back.

You know when you have chosen your past over God because you remain frozen in time – revealed by a conversation in your head that is only about the past. You continually spew forth sentences such as ‘If only I would have done ___.’ ‘If only I’d married ___.’ ‘If only I wasn’t so ___.’ ‘If only my parents weren’t so ___.’ ‘If only, if only, if only…’

It’s a conversation consisting of a string of regrets (attachments to the past) – a flurry of thoughts telling you that you, someone else, or something else must change in order for you to be happy. You do the same thing when you’re lost in some nebulous future: ‘If only I could be taller, richer, etc.’

What happens when you keep these conversations going in your head? Nothing happens. Why? Life is only lived in the present moment.

The voice likes you in the past because that is where it can exercise its power. It is not omniscient. That’s why it doesn’t like you in the present moment because that represents change – an unpredictable state of affairs that it can’t control. So it keeps presenting your world as an ongoing stream of past events with warnings like ‘What if this happens again?’ In other words, it preserves its relevance by keeping you believing that your worst nightmare is lurking just around the corner.

What it has done is that in your mind it has changed the true meaning of time as the opportunity to live a meaningful life, and made it the enemy – a place where you cower in the fear of replaying your past.

How does that look? Life never seems to be what we think it should be. It’s a life we map out in order to avoid the pain of our past, which ultimately keeps our focus on that very same pain.

Instead of seeking out God to help us ferret out the roots of our dissatisfaction with life, we change jobs, relationships and geography, or we immerse ourselves in meaningless activities of distraction – remaining the author of our own vexation.

Life changes with our without you. You suffer because you want your sad life to remain the same because it’s all you know and because you know the person you have to be to live it. But, it just continues to worsen because your past is bottomless. Why? Because you continue to embellish your Life Story so that there are always new nuances with which to beat yourself up with.

This is not living; it is dying unconsciously…

No one makes the conscious decision to be wounded, yet those wounds will continue to fester in those who will not let go of their past.

Whatever happened in your past my or may not have been your fault. It may or may not have happened the way you remember it. Whatever happened, IT DOESN’T MATTER! What matters is that you learn from it and move on.

You cannot get that time back or undo what has transpired. You have to let it go. That part is your responsibility.

It’s time to seek God and let Him wake you from your suspended animation and fit you with a new watch.

But as for me, I trust in You O LORD; I say, “You are my God,” my times are in Your hand; Ps. 31:14, 15. NKJV

For I know the thoughts I think towards you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the LORD, and I will bring you back from your captivity… Jer. 29:11 – 14. NKJV

Until next time…
Goodnight and God bless.