As we consider our Rules for Life, we realize what matters to us most. We also discover greater appreciation for who we are and where we’ve been, so we can determine what our heart is calling us to contribute to the world.
Our mission at this point on the journey — even if we don’t have absolute clarity about our rules — is to connect with God, in whatever way we know God. This way, we begin to find God in and through all — the thrills and joys, as well as the pain and discomfort. We remember that God is our Source, first and foremost, for all we need. Then we know who we are and what our calling is, just as Jesus did, and all spiritual masters and mystics do.
According to the Gospel Writer called John, Jesus explained this to the disciples who would later teach his ways of living. Jesus said: “I have not spoken on my own authority, but God which sent me has given me a commandment — what to say and what to speak.” (12:49) Jesus continually connected with God first, so he could fulfill his true calling in service to others.
We, too, can discern how best to live and be. Though, be prepared. It’s usually an exercise in subtraction, rather than addition. The practical part of this is deeply personal, so go slowly:
- Determine when and where you’ll make time daily to connect with God through silence, prayer and meditation.
- Keep some kind of journal, notebook or sketch pad so you can chronicle your feelings and thoughts, however scattered or random.
- Find one trusted mental health or spiritual counselor, other than a dear friend or family member, who truly listens and can help you hear yourself.
- Listen to your body. Notice what energizes you and what depletes you, as well as when, where and with whom your energy is strongest and weakest.
- Consider your possessions, which you love and consider beautiful, and which have served their time and need to be released.
- Discern whether the communities and/or people you follow share similar rules or whether you’re trying to fit square pegs into round holes.
- Check your To-Do List. Consider what you truly need to do, what someone else can do, what can wait and what doesn’t actually need to be done.
- Check your Bucket List or List of Dreams to see which are yours, which are someone else’s, and which you’ve put off because you’re doing something you don’t want to do.
Simple tasks, each one, though not always easy. Yet, as we connect with God, we learn to trust our hearts and our rules become our way of life.
© 2016 – Rev. Jennifer L. Sacks. All rights reserved.