How does one become a butterfly? . . . You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar. –Trina Paulus
OML Day 19 – Metamorphosis: Changing from the Inside Out – supposed to have been Monday’s post.
One of the many things that being laid off from work has helped me to realize: it’s trying to look beyond being without paying work. I am thanking God every day that I get to spend more time with Hallie and Mama. Not only that, but more time with me and more uninterrupted time with God. Oh, I do wonder what my next job will be and when, but until then, I’m trying to learn how to be patient and trying to trust in God. And while I’m waiting on him, I’ll continue to send out resume’s, make phone calls, check out the classifieds and continue to pray, while also enjoying peace as well as quality and quantity of time with my most precious loved ones.
Do you ever make time for being alone? I mean alone with God. Not by yourself, reading a book, or writing, or watching tv, or working in the yard. I mean sitting, being still and just being. Being alone, silent and still with God. It’s sort of meditating, but more so, it’s just allowing yourself to open your ears and listen. Listen for God’s voice, the birds chirping, the wind blowing, cars going by, no chance of a phone ringing or receiving a text on your cell. It’s setting aside a few minutes a day, at least 10, but better if it’s 15-30, to just open your mind to God.
My favorite time and place to do this? When it’s raining, I go into my livingroom with the warm sage covered walls, I feel wrapped with Earth, held by nature, and when I open the window coverings to see the rain hitting the window panes, hearing it, watching the trees becoming drenched with drink, I feel bathed, the rain cleanses my soul. I feel as if God cleans me out when I just get 15 minutes of quiet and stillness alone with him in this way. It’s refreshing. It empties my soul of all this stress and chaos of my daily life and refills it with peace, love and tranquility. I feel renewed with Spirit and not a vibrant, high-paced energy, but a peaceful energy, a restful energy.
I encourage you to try this. Oh, and open one or all the windows in the room, just a crack, so you can hear the rain more fully and you can smell the fragrance. Enhancing each of your senses during this quiet time will allow you to experience God more fully, or that’s been my experience, anyway. I do encourage you to find alone time with God every day, in any manner you choose to. Perhaps you’d rather be bathing in the sun or the shade of a giant oak, or just in your bedroom rocking chair.
Take responsibility for your own growth and your own life. No one else can be blamed for your shortcomings but you. Blaming parents, spouses, etc., for a bad whatever, doesn’t get you anywhere and you’ll never reach your fullest potential by living this way. I speak from experience. Lots of it. Also, stop comparing yourself to others. It’s not about what’s on the outside. It’s the inside that matters. The caterpillar climbs into the chrysalis, not to buckle down and work hard on becoming a butterfly, it becomes motionless, and the beautiful transformation takes place.
So, stop moving, be still and allow God to transform your soul into something beautiful. Paul reminds us to “fix your attention on God” (Romans 12:2, MSG). Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God.” I believe motion and commotion can be a good thing and I don’t think they steal the soul, as the authors express in this chapter, as getting your business done and getting physical by keeping your body in shape and dancing are all good things that we should be doing, but we do all need to make time, daily, for stillness, in order for God to restore the soul.
When you have a problem and can find no answers, be still and listen to God. If you are struggling and can find no help, be still and quiet and open to God.
I agree with the Shooks where they say the best antidote for comparison compulsion, or status-symbol syndrome, is service. Serve people who cannot give you anything back in return. When you learn to be compassionate like this, you learn to connect more fully and you quit worrying about comparing yourself.
Just like the butterfly must struggle on its own, exercise its wings to break through, to gain strength, to emerge, we must endure struggles to strengthen us. We must suffer and struggle so that we may soar to our fullest potential. Endure those struggles with grace and the only way to truly do that is by trusting God.
Hope y’all made it an amazing day. May God help you make it even more spectacular tomorrow. Love yooze guys! *hug*