The Challenges Of Faith and Adversity
Worry: to torment oneself with or suffer from disturbing thoughts; fret.
Weariness – to make or become discontented or impatient, especially by the long continuance of something, draining
This homily was inspired by a sermon given by Joel Olsteen. I might be pagan, but that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the words of other ministers from other faiths. Open you mind and release the dislike, hate or negative perceptions of others in the world. You never know, you might find something that inspires you.
Everyone faces challenges in their life. Some challenges are greater than others, some face greater suffering by the standards of society, some are victims of circumstance and some have made choices of their own that create the struggle. Whatever your story is, there are three things to remember when facing the challenges of adversity in your life:
- Someone in the world does have it worse than you.
- You create, what you think.
- You are never alone.
If you can remember these three things, you have the strength to endure and face the challenges in your life. You can overcome adversity, learn from your experiences and grow toward enlightenment. You can become one with your own inner spirit and merge your thinking with the Divine Consciousness in your life and create what you desire. You can implement your beliefs into your daily life and begin Walking Your Talk© through:
1. Meditation – To feel the Divine Universal Spirit within you and in your life.
2. Energy – What you create and put out, you will get back.
3. Action – Putting your spiritual beliefs into practice.
Don’t Let Worry Take Hold
It’s easy for everyone to get down when things get tough. We talk to ourselves and those around us saying “I’m tired.”, “I can’t take more of this”, “I don’t think I can get through this”, or “If one more thing happens I’m going to lose my mind. I can’t take anymore!”
These words of self doubt and negative talk only attract more of the same thing. We become more tired, we pull more adversity into our lives and we feel like the world is against us at every turn.
But these things aren’t happening because you’re a victim. They’re happening to bring you a Divine lesson that can and will make the difference in your life if you take a moment to understand the higher purpose and learn the lesson. You have the power within yourself to change your situation. If you remind yourself that someone out there does have it a lot worse than you do, it’s easier to remember you can face this. It’s not that bad. It’s hard, it’s tough, but it’s not insurmountable. You can get through it by discovering the strength you have within. That strength is not something you have to dig up on your own. It comes when you raise your physical sight to your spiritual view.
Meditation – To feel the Divine Universal Spirit within you and in your life.
When you move up above the trees and see the entire forest, you can view the whole world, see the paths that have lead to this point in your life and the paths that can lead you out of darkness and struggle. From your spiritual view, you understand the spiritual lessons and what they’re meant to teach you. Things become clear and that vision allows you to go from the unknown darkness to the Divine light of knowing.
Not understanding why things happen creates fear within. Why do bad things happen to good people? Why did a young mother lose her unborn or newborn baby? Why did that nice compassionate man lose his job? Why did that loving single mother lose her house? Why did that person get cancer when they’re already going through such adversity? Struggling to find the ‘why’ is what keeps us in the unknown and in a place of fear. Creating more of the same and increasing the cloud of worry and weariness.
When we sit down and go within through meditation, prayer or contemplation; we can rise up to that Divine spiritual view and gain a greater understanding beyond the physical details and overcome that fear. Close your eyes and say a personal prayer for guidance. Ask for help in seeing the lessons of spirit that are being presented to you at this time. Then imagine your inner soul standing up and floating upward toward the Divine consciousness in your life. Feel your soul touch the energy of that greater Divine force and allow it to fill your spirit with empowerment and understanding. You are not alone. It is through this connection of mind/body and spirit that you can connect to the power of Divine creation and create within yourself the strength to face and overcome the adversity in your life. You can shine the light on the why and gain understanding that destroys the fear, the doubt and the negative self talk.
Hold that Divine energy within and bring it back into the physical body. Imagine your being engulfed in Divine white light of wisdom, pure yellow light of empowerment and success. Allow yourself to see your path through the thoughts of meditation and you can begin to release the worry.
Create Your World From Within
Energy – What you create and put out, you will get back.
How you think creates your actions and responses to the adversity in your life. You have the ability to create your day every time you wake up in the morning. That in turn will create your week, your month, your year and your life. If you wake up with fear and dread, that’s what you will create in every action you take. Getting up out of bed becomes more of an effort. Fixing the pot of coffee for everyone becomes a chore and you feel anger wanting someone else to do it for once. Taking a shower and getting ready for the day feels draining instead of giving a sense of renewal or refreshment. Each little thing you do snowballs the energy you started with when you first opened your eyes.
When we wake up, it only takes a moment to create the self talk to start the day with strength. Reminding yourself that you are connected to the Divine Universe and have the self empowerment to create the day with compassion, strength and kindness. Sometimes we have to be reminded that when we give compassion and kindness to others, we must include ourselves in that group of “others”. Talking negative to the self, disrespects our own beliefs and spiritual perspectives. We say “GreatSpirits why do I have to go through this?”, instead of “GreatSpirits thank you for giving me the strength to walk my path today”. You can create your world with faith and trust in the process of the Divine, or you can worry and struggle.
When I was in my teens, I remember going to a Baptist Revival with my favorite Uncle one Saturday evening. The preacher was talking about putting your faith in God, that God will take care of you. “Let go and let God, trust that you are not alone and you will be taken care of”, he said. He was on a trip through Kentucky for a 30-day revival mission to various towns. One Saturday afternoon he stopped by a grocery store to pick up some shaving cream so he could get ready for that evenings service. In line in front of him was a young girl with a three month old baby in her arms. She had some diapers and formula for the baby and a fist of change. When the cashier rang up the items, the girl began to cry as she counted the few dollars and change she had in her hand. It wasn’t enough to cover what she needed for her baby. And it became clear to the preacher that this young mother has been struggling to provide for her child, even at the expense of her self.
Now I’m old, and back in my teens we didn’t have ATM cards or debit cards. You couldn’t write an out of state check at a grocery store and not every person in the universe had a credit card. What cash you had in your pocket, is what you had to spend, especially on a Saturday. The preacher looked in his wallet and realized he had enough money for his can of shaving cream, or to make up the difference in what the girl needed to cover her items. But not both. He didn’t hesitate, and he handed the cashier his money and said “Will this cover what she needs?”, with a nasty attitude the cashier took his money completed the sale and bagged the items for the girl. The young mother couldn’t thank him enough, gave him a hug and walked out. Now he was left feeling good about what he had done, but he faced his own dilemma of what he was going to do. The cashier’s attitude wasn’t improving when he handed her the can of shaving gel and said “I’ve been wanting to grow a beard anyway” and he walked out of the store. When he got to his car, he looked down at the dashboard as he started the engine and realized he didn’t have enough gas to get to the service that evening. He closed his eyes and said a prayer “I put my path in your hands Lord.”
Back at his hotel he began getting ready for his revival service that evening. He took his shower, used soap from the hotel to shave with and started getting dressed. He was thinking about who he could contact for a ride to the revival. He tried the Pastor hosting the meeting, but he had already left home and there wasn’t a phone at the park where a tent was being set up for the revival. Remember I’m old, this was before cell phones. He took out his suit and began getting dressed. He had a small pastor’s book that he liked to keep with him to read when he was waiting or setting his mind to his sermon. He kept the little blue book in the inside pocket of his suit coat. He was gathering his items to leave and placed the book in the pocket when he realized there was something in that pocket and in the way of putting the book there. When he reached in and pulled out what he thought must be a piece of paper with a note written on it, he was surprised to find a $20 bill. By putting his fate in the hands of his faith and his God, he was taken care of and a way was provided.
It can take a little effort to move your faith from your heart to your head. To remember what you believe in isn’t simply some set of thoughts, concepts or understandings. It’s also a set of beliefs to live by on a physical level as well. To keep in your consciousness mind through each and every day and in the exercise of your actions. Remembering that your thoughts are the energy that create your actions, you can create a more positive snowball that comes back in your favor.
You Are Not Alone
Action – Putting your spiritual beliefs into practice.
It doesn’t matter what you call that Divine force in your life. God, GreatSpirits, Goddess or the ThunderBeings. Whatever it is to you, remember your faith provides you with a means to connect to that Divine force and put your faith into action. Let go of the worry, don’t let it make you weary and trust that the Divine will take care of you. Change the negative talk of lack and stress into words of empowerment, encouragement and strength.
Now that doesn’t mean you can put your faith in “God” and expect everything to fall into place by osmosis. My grandmother said to me once “When you face problems, you have to pray to God as if there is no other solution in the world. Then you have to get off your knees and go about your business as if there was never a God to pray to in the first place.” The Christians call this “God helps those, who help themselves”. Putting your faith in the Divine doesn’t mean you move the burdens onto someone elses shoulders. It means working together through the connection of spiritual mind and physical action to Improvise, Adapt and Overcome.
“You cannot change the past. You can only change the way you allow the past to affect your present and your future”. – SpringWolf
“I have the strength to face these challenges”, “I create a day of calm empowerment and success”, “I connect to the GreatSpirits and the Universal energy of creation and create the solutions to overcome and learn”, “I put my faith in the ThunderBeings and take note of the guidance they provide during the day”, “I have the strength and will power to walk through this day with compassion and courage.” Turn your self talk into an advantage against hardship and worry. Believe in yourself and the power of creation to overcome. Yes you may have to change a few things in your life. Yes it will take work and effort. But with the force of the Divine in your corner, you can do it and you will succeed.
The more you remind yourself of these things, the more you create endurance to overcome the issues that pop up throughout your life, and not just in your life today. You create a foundation to build a strong presence of faith in the way you view the past, perceive the moment and take action for the future.
You can call it Walking Your Talk, Meditation, Energy and Action, or Living Your Faith. Whatever works for you, the important thing is to walk through your day remembering that the challenges you face can be overcome through the implementation of your beliefs onto the path you take. You gain understanding and wisdom, increase the strength to face adversity and attain the ability of self empowerment. The next challenge won’t seem as big or insurmountable. Because you know “Someone has it worse than I do. I can face these challenges with the energy of the Divine and the creation of positive action”. You can conquer the worry that has made you weary and achieve all that you dream!
© 2012 Springwolf, D.D., Ph.D. Springwolf Reflections / Spring’s Haven, LLC. All Rights Reserved.