Friday, October 31, 2008

Part IV: Be Obedient

(fourth installment of talk entitled, "How being yourself guarantees infinite supply")

When you start opening thought to the Divine in that way [as discussed in Part III], strange things might start occurring to you. Like, maybe you should call that person you haven't talked to in twelve years. Or maybe you should go down to the magazine stand and leaf through some trade publications. Or maybe you should attend an event that has never been on yours schedule before. This step is about trusting these impulses and acting on them.

Let me take you back to that time right after my more recent layoff from the job I loved. I have to admit I was pretty shell-shocked for a month or so. There were some great breakthroughs spiritually, but also moments of deep darkness and depression. What I was especially grieving about was the idea that my voice had been silenced somehow, that I could no longer express all the ideas within me that were bursting to get out and be shared. I felt very cut off from communicating with the world.

I had been going to God in tears about these issues and finding no peace. Finally, after a night when I mercifully got some sleep, I woke up in the morning with this idea: "Start a Weblog."

I thought, What? Can I do that?

Weblogs were still on the new-ish side. They'd been around for a couple years, but I didn't know many people personally who kept one. I also had a weird inhibition about human approval, meaning, could I just do something on my own without someone here on earth telling me it was okay?

And I heard that idea again. "Start a Weblog. Today."

Alrighty then! So I did.

This was prayer in action for me. For the next three years, every day (with very few holidays), I posted what was on my mind about my spiritual journey. This was huge for me. Not only was I sharing my spiritual journey with the wide world, I was learning as I went. The blog started out small, with just a few timid entries where I was barely dipping my toes in the water. As my courage grew, though, I covered every issue that came up, and that was just about everything from sex to drugs to rock and roll.

Now, looking back, I can see that one of the most important but unsuspected aspects of the Weblog was the fact that I was writing every day. Through obedience to Divine Mind, I reconnected with myself as a writer. I hadn't written creatively for many years. I had devoted myself to a spiritual cause, which was right for that time. Now that I was on my own again, God was leading me to ways to find out my own passions and talents.


Let's go back to MBE's essay on angels. Here's the sentence before what I just read: "God gives you His spiritual ideas, and in turn, they give you daily supplies." (from "Angels")

Here's that equation again: God sends ideas, they lead to what you need. I might add, "if you follow them." The arrival of these ideas is not passive on our part. We need to greet them, welcome them, obey them, take action.

During those months mentioned above, I was also looking here and there for full-time employment. But the idea that came most strongly was to freelance as a writer/editor, possibly for Websites and other marketing applications. I began to turn myself in that direction to see what would happen. Again, this was sheer obedience, with no real overarching desire on my part how it would turn out. I was just trusting that the toothpaste would be there the next day when I needed it.

Tom gave a great example of this [in his talk] yesterday, when he talked about hearing the angel message to stop and turn around. He didn't just hear the message, though, he had to take action! We can hear the message all day long, but if we don't obey it, we don't get anywhere.

So one day, I got the idea to visit the local Congregational church. I'd never visited any church in my community besides my own, so this would be first. Also, it was the same time as my usual church service. The idea was not only to visit that church, but to do it that weekend. No delays. Okay, I'll go!

I went to the service, which was nice, and then also attended the coffee hour afterward. When mentioning to someone there that I'm a Christian Scientist, someone else overheard and came right over to me. He was also just visiting that day. He wanted to connect with me for a business reason due to my faith affiliation. In our conversation, he urged me to attend a trade show for local businesses that was happening that Wednesday.

Huh, I thought. So I went.

There, I met a man at a booth for a telephone service, who took my card and invited me to visit his business networking chapter the following Tuesday. This was my introduction to the referral marketing business group that jump-started my freelance work. While I didn't join his chapter, I did find one closer to my home and joined there. I subsequently never had to do any additional marketing, and my business grew.

Now, just bear in mind none of this would have happened if I hadn't been obedient to that first, out of the blue, idea to visit the local church. Or at least it wouldn’t have happened that way. It was so easy!

Somehow, while I might think of bank accounts or equity lines as finite, I can grasp the idea that ideas are infinite. How can there ever be a shortage of ideas? They fill all space, eternally. That being the case, there is no lack at all, how could there be? Ideas fill the need infinitely.

You have infinite supply because you have infinite ideas arriving moment-by-moment from the Divine. Look to this Source as your fount of blessing, and follow where it leads.

Supply = Idea

A very wise spiritual healer I once knew said this is something we need to demonstrate every day, ongoing. It's not something we figure out once then forget about it. Even if we have all the money in the world, there will still be the need to overcome lack in other areas—maybe time, maybe health, maybe love. Most of us are focused on money as the measure of supply, but I'm becoming convinced this is way off. It's not dollars at all.

So what have I learned? That all I need is ideas. All I need, have ever needed, will ever need is new inspiration from the Divine to direct my next step. That's it. One idea, even, to initiate one next step. For, I can only take one step at a time.

If I'm afraid, if I'm scrambling to make money, if I'm acting under the impression that I need to figure out what to do, I block this free flow of ideas from the Divine. Because it is a free flow. Ideas are pouring out to us constantly. They are the embodiment or articulation of what harmony looks like in our particular instance, and we have constant access to them.

So to me, demonstrating abundance is about demonstrating an openness to ideas and a willingness to be obedient. To not second-guess the ideas, but to follow them with expectation of good.

[We took a break then.]

Someone asked me during the break an interesting question. She wanted to know how to tell the difference between an idea and a dead-end, you know, some idea that's not from the Divine. I talked a little bit about how to me sometimes it the difference between feeling, Huh, that's an interesting idea, and Argh! That idea makes me anxious!

But then she said something the clarified what she meant. She was interested in working more with children, and the idea came to her, "Look into adoption." This made her freeze up! She thought instantly about what it would meant to adopt, how a child in her life would change everything, and how could she do that?

As she told me that story, I stopped her and pointed out (I hope gently), "The idea wasn't, 'Go adopt a child.' The idea was simply, 'Look into adoption.' You don't know where that will lead or whom you might meet. Just follow the idea without expecting what the end will be."

So another element of this is to follow the idea as presented, and not read into it so much that it gets burdened with anxiety and fear. And then, see where it takes you.

As my life opened up in obedience to all these new ideas that came from knowing God more, I was led directly to this concept of being yourself.

TOMORROW: Part V: Be Yourself

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