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There’s lot of talk about doing God’s Will. “You choose, I’ll follow.” There’s also quite a bit about it being about my will, what I decide it to be. Which is it? I think it means that God wants for us what we want for ourselves. God’s will is simply salvation – that we remember who we are. So the path He lays out for us can be colored by our wishes, our will.

God never forces us to do anything. He only encourages. Seeing the wider Point-Of-View, He knows all is well. No matter what our monkey minds might chatter up. God never stops, never loses patience. Why should He? He has all the time in the world.

What an amazing system He created of Cause and Effect which moves the energy in the Universe. We all have an impact on how it moves, in our own way, at our own pace, in our own time. By our impressions about life we are at cause in what’s happening to us. Our thoughts conjure the particular effect we think about. They direct our action (our cause) to the effect it produces.

Underlying the various stories we seem so magically able to create, is a brilliant, Loving Universe that wants to support us to have whatever it is we say we want. This entity wishes only that we experience all that life has to offer – the “good” and the “bad” – as it’s all God Stuff after all.

It is we carbon-based creatures who care to see this false reality of guilt and blame, up and down, love and fear. We can’t seem to get the game; that it’s all about Love. We find it so hard to see through the illusion to the Loving nature of the Universe.

We can feel it. Maybe see it in action. But it is I guess our challenge, our question to answer: Will we rest into that Loving Universe each and every day? Welcoming all that comes our way with love and understanding? Doing what makes us happy, helping and supporting others, knowing we are all in this together?

In the end, it is God’s will that we find our way there. Salvation is the goal and its end is assured. But in the meantime, it is our will that fills in the details. What we believe about ourselves, about our lives, how the universe works is how the Universe works for us.

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I’ve been playing around with surrender lately.  Thought it’s particularly appropriate in my situation right now, I do believe it’s an important concept.

Surrender, as I’m talking of it, simply means to accept what you find in your life.  A wise friend pointed out that surrender without positive action attached is merely giving up. I prefer the idea of giving in.  Getting in the flow of what’s happening and letting it take you.  That doesn’t mean you can’t paddle or flap your wings, or look out for obstacles in the way.  It’s just that you stop fighting the current and allow it to work for you instead of against you.

1) Surrender to the Daily Trip Ups
The best place to practice surrendering is with the little things.  When you didn’t get the flavor you really wanted.  Or when the lid doesn’t fit, the printer isn’t behaving, the kids are bouncing off the walls. You have a choice.  You can get pissed off, rant to yourself or anyone who will listen about how that’s just another sign that life is out to get you, things never go your way, you should’ve . . .  (or whatever such babble might come up that makes you feel bad). Or you can surrender to the fact that the kids are just playing, that this is not the right lid, or the printer needs some attention. Tell yourself that it’s all for the best.  Maybe today is strawberry.  Tomorrow could be blueberry. Use the small things to practice for the bigger ones.

2) Surrender to the Moment
It’s quite easy and possible to stop and surrender to this moment. It only takes one breath. I find this extremely helpful in the holiday season.  When things get to moving too fast or too loud, if you take a breath and see what’s around you, you might find some good stuff.  Even if there’s nothing going on and it’s quiet.  Whatever is happening, surrender to it.  Just this one moment.

3) Surrender When There’s Nothing You Can Do
Keep an eye out for those things that you truly can’t do anything about.  At least not now. They’re not so hard to surrender to. Simply acknowledging that there’s nothing you can do about it can kick you into surrender gear. The rent’s due, but it’s Sunday and there’s nothing you can do about it today.  So “Don’t worry.  Be Happy.”  Just accept it.  You can take your positive action tomorrow. The Dalai Lama said, “If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it’s not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.”

4) Surrender to Your Right to Shine Your Light
We all have something to shine.  It’s not really a right, I just liked the rhyme of it.  It’s more like a purpose or even an obligation. I believe that we are all put on this Earth to share our light. The light that’s inside of us.  That’s not exactly easy.  But if we practice with this thought, maybe we can learn to let it shine!

5) Surrender When You Feel Caught
If you find yourself stuck in resistance or obstinance or anger, or a meeting that won’t stop, just breathe out and realize you’re there.  Take a moment to ask yourself, “Can I accept this situation as it is?  Do I have a choice?”  This is where you are.

6) Surrender to the Joy
I happen to believe it is a Loving Universe.  If I allow myself to see all the joy around me, I’m reminded of that.  Surrender to the hot bath, the loving embrace, a good meal.  There’s so much in this world to enjoy!  It may be hard to surrender to a bleak situation, but not so hard to surrender to what’s good.  Practice where you can.

7) Surrender to God
Caroline Myss said of surrender that it’s about saying to God, “You choose, I’ll follow.” Knowing that we don’t know it all and can’t see the whole picture.  We can trust in and surrender to God.

It’s so easy to get caught up in seeing, being and doing “enough.”  Doing it Right.  But the truth is, this no such scale of how much is really, truly enough.  And the jury is still out on what exactly is the universal definition of Right.

Instead, the world operates on the very neutral law of Cause and Effect. You create a cause, you get an Effect. That’s just the way it works.  It’s merely about how energy moves and has nothing to do with good or bad, right or wrong.  It is only how we, who live in this dual world, decide to see it.

With this system of Cause and Effect, there are no “mistakes.”  Just the effect of a cause that you don’t like. The outcome, likewise, is always assured.  There is no way to fail at Cause and Effect.  All you have to do is make the cause and the effect will follow.  And you are always at Cause. If you did absolutely nothing, you would still create quite a stir!  Making a choice to not do is a cause, as well. As long as you are alive you are creating a Cause and there will be an Effect of some kind to match it.

I am doing a daily lesson of A Course in Miracles, thanks to Chris Cade.  Any seeker on the path should check out his web site.  Lesson 25’s idea is “I do not know what anything is for.”  This tells me that I can’t know what my cause will bring, what it might bump into on the way, which cage it could rattle, what window it opens . . . This no way of knowing what effect all those causes might conjure.

Doing a lot of work lately with the Loving Universe.  This Law of Cause and Effect is just another reason to believe it truly is a loving universe. I’m hoping to let go of my litany of ratings and evaluations, my clinging to outcomes and just focus on putting out a good energy Cause.

We all see things through a filter.  Even if we are willing to face life directly, we still make the choice what we are going to name what we see in front of us.  It helps to stop a moment and ask ourselves, “How am I going to relate to this situation?”

It is up to me to give this situation a name. Am I going to see it in a positive light – through the eyes of the Loving Universe?  That whatever I was hoping for just wasn’t meant to be.  I can learn something and grow from the experience.  Or am I going to see it in a negative light – as if I was being punished for something?  That I failed again and was never really good enough to get it, anyway . . .

Same situation either way.  I can still tell the truth about it and accept that it happened.  No matter how I choose to view it.

If I choose the Loving Universe theory, I melt the negativity gripping my heart, my hand, my mind, my emotions. Things loosen up, settle down. And then I can see life even more clearly, the situation can come into sharper focus.  It no longer hurts to look at it.  I can see the picture better and because I’m not so afraid, upset, angry, frustrated, insecure, unsure . . .  I can stand more confidently in who I am, in a far better, more stable position from which to take action. Whatever it might require. Rather than be standing on wobbly, over-wrought legs.

This grounded, positive stance gives me a calmer head for making choices before I act. It allows me to pause long enough to consider, rather than being run around by emotions.  My E-motions, emoting me into an action I may not have chosen. It gives me a moment to make a better choice.

In the end, any choice is really okay.  Making a choice is better than not.  Any one will move me forward.  But I have to imagine that a choice made in joy, from a more peaceful mind, is going to lead me to a more joyful place.

I’ve been getting back into Networking with earnest these days.  I am as they say, a reluctant networker, preferring the silence of my own thoughts or the ease of a one-on-one with an interesting person.

But it reminds me of the laws of the Loving Universe about energy.  That we are all made of the same stuff, we’re all connected.  So whatever energy I put out there effects more than just what’s in front of me.  Especially in this cyber age. Knowing one person puts me in touch with a whole lot of other people!

You might do something for someone over here and get back something from your left and several paces behind you.  You just never now how it will bounce around. It is energy after all.  It moves things.  But you can’t always track where that movement is going to come back to you. I believe deeply and have seen it happen time and time again – If I give something to you, I might not get what I had hoped to from you, but I will get it from somewhere else.  It’s just the way energy moves.

They stress in networking to be thinking about what you can do for others. But also to be able to ask for what you want. Advice, Information Resources, I learned recently. AIR.  I like that.  Simple.  You can do it the other way and say what AIR can I offer you?  Both of these are good spiritual principles.  Go at it with the idea of doing for others, but don’t forget yourself. Be able to clearly ask for what you want.  Give what you can for others.

Sometimes I give more than I get.  Sometimes I get more than I give.  I might not always have what you need – but I give you the chance to move energy toward me.  And it all comes back around.  We both get something from it.

Another nice thing about this flow is that it doesn’t have to take a lot of effort.  It multiplies.  Isn’t there something in the Bible about this? Whatever you give will be returned to you ten fold? One good deed can produce a lot more in returns.  Especially if one is open to it.  Whether sending or receiving.  It’s how the world works. Just not necessarily in a linear fashion, as we expect to see it.

I just love the flow of the Loving Universe!  You pay attention.  See what is really going on, looking for ways you can help.  Ask for and offer help.  Allow help to come to you.  Embrace it, flow help back.  Pay attention again, accepting, allowing, embracing, flowing.

I believe this is a Loving Universe.  Therefore, it is my understanding that everything that comes my way has something to teach me.  It’s magical when you think about it – that one incident would have something different to teach everyone involved.

My favorite pastor, Stan Gale, wrote recently about how all that comes to us, especially adversity, is there to strengthen our faith. I can sit with that.  I agree that we need to find a way to welcome everything that comes to us with acceptance.  But the result, in my mind, is much bigger than just an escalation of faith.

This circumstance – whether it’s adversity or prosperity, hurtful or joyful, consequential or just a flitter on the radar – can expand our love and consciousness, as well. If we go at life with the question, “What is this trying to tell me?” we allow ourselves to experience so much more.

The other day, I was stood up.  The person who didn’t show certainly has her own lessons to learn, maybe about fulfilling promises or being more honest about what she wants.  Those are not my lessons, though.  I truly wanted to get together and I showed up on time and followed up with phone calls and e-mails.

I could easily be angry.  But if I use this experience and ask what it’s trying to tell me, I can feel sympathy for her. I realize that something else is going on or she would’ve been there.  But what is my part, what is my lesson?  Is it about reading the signs which pointed to this possibility?  Or is it something deeper?  Maybe something about thinking it’s okay to stand me up, without a call?

The point is just that there are lessons for each of us to be found in everything.  My expansion is likely to be different from others within a situation.  By asking a simple question like “What is this trying to tell me?” I open opportunities to grow, to love more and to deepen my faith.

I just love Pandora.  I have 10 or so stations of my favorite artists.  They are on Shuffle and can keep me entertained for hours!  95% of what it plays, I like.  Why shouldn’t it?  It’s so much easier than doing my own programming and it gives me a surprising variety.  Since I pay more attention, this method also increases the chances of hearing guidance.

I love that in the Loving Universe, messages can come to you from all kinds of sources.  I am partial to the song lyrics that jump out at me.

Al Green has been in my heart since I was a young girl.  Sexy and religious.  I like that combination.  The original Reverend Al.  He has a song called “Livin’ for You.”  I believe it is also the title track.  It sounds a bit like he’s Livin’ for a woman.  But it could be God, too.

It got me thinking about what I was living for.  Woody Allen, in his landmark film, Manhattan, has a scene where he’s stretched out on the sofa with a microphone in his hand, attached to a small tape recorder.  He asks himself, “What makes life worth living?”  He lists a few things – works of art, music, and then stumbles into “Tracy’s face.”  Tracy is the lovely girl he’d been keeping at arm’s length since he was twice her age.  Knowing that she was packing to leave Manhattan to go to school in London, the realization propels him off the sofa and into the streets of Manhattan, running to catch her before she goes.

That’s what I call action!  And inspiration.  What is it that can get you up off the chair and out there, running for what you want?

Am I living to pay the bills or for spending quality time with my loved ones?  Am I living to support someone else at the expense of myself?  Am I living for my artwork?

It’s always helpful to review your priorities regularly.  It puts fuel into whatever you do every day.  Letting you see how it fits into your life, moving you closer to your intentions.  It infuses gratitude into everything. Shine the light of what you’re living for!

It’s a Loving Universe

As I write this now, I’m thinking that this should be Part 1. When you see that the Universe is a loving place, it makes it that much easier to accept and allow.  From that place of acceptance, you are more able to access the present moment.

Be that as it may, all it takes to know it’s a Loving Universe is simply to take the time to look.  When you begin to search for evidence, you will find plenty.  Everything, I mean everything that happens to you is for your best good.  It may take some time and space to see it, but see it you will. Even (sometimes especially) things that look “bad” like losing your job, for instance, often turns out to be the best thing that ever happened to you.  Over and over, you will see evidence if you but take the time to observe the results.

What’s truly amazing about this is that while the Universe is busy loving you and delivering good things your way, It is also doing the very same thing for everyone else.

It’s at this point I wish to bring in the word God.  Personally, it seems like fanciful thinking to say that life sprung up out of nowhere and developed a species that can build a city, make love and create music. It seems far more rational to think there’s an intelligence, a plan behind it all. What else could make everything perfect for everyone?

This Universe (or God, if you don’t mind) is so loving that It has given us all the tools we need to manifest an awesome life.  We can create our life without money, time or help.  Everything each of us needs we come equipped with. Things like willingness, imagination and inspiration are standard equipment on all models.

One more important point I’d like to make about the Loving Universe is that It accepts us (as It asks us to accept It) completely and without reservation, just exactly the way we are.  No matter what flaws you may think you have, no matter how many “bad” things you think you’ve done, the Universe still loves you, still brings you the best.  Just because you’ve made a few mistakes (or even broken a few laws) doesn’t mean you lose your curiosity, the ability to take action, fall in love, or be committed to a goal.

If you’re not convinced it’s a Loving Universe just watch It at work and you will soon have all the proof you need.

When you’ve seen that it’s a loving Universe, it’s easy to fall back on, “The Universe will provide.”

I believe this Universe is made up of energy.  If you’re not consciously directing that energy, it will simply decide you don’t want it moved and leave things, pretty much as they are.

A wise woman I once knew, perhaps quoting form the Unity Church of which she belonged, talked about putting sneakers on your prayers.

Our future is made in the present. If your present consists of sitting and waiting for the Universe, you are likely to continue sitting around and waiting.  The energy is there to be moved and guided.

When you say things like, “I don’t want to be poor,” the Universe hears that you “want to be poor.” But when you get off the pity pot and say, “I want money,” and start doing something about it, you’ve got a far better chance of changing your situation.  You begin to move the energy in the direction of getting money, instead of letting it slack around your poor self.

The Active Verb, Movement, even baby steps, powered by a positive intention is how things get done in this Universe.  Positive affirmations are good and they can keep you going.  But waiting for the Universe to provide food for your belly, isn’t going to fill it.

Okay, so something went wrong.  What I wanted didn’t show up as expected.

If it’s, in fact, a Loving Universe, that means I didn’t thwart my progress for some unknown reason.  It wasn’t because I’m not good enough, either.  All of that is a lie.

In truth, it’s just a part of the process as I wind my way through this journey.  All is well.   I don’t need to dwell on the sad stories about how I messed up in the past, things never go my way, this always happen to me . . .

I can pray for help in washing away those stories.  And I can dream up new ones.  Anything I choose.  Like maybe there’s something even better coming!

Release the stress, worry and pressure.  I don’t need it.  All is well.  The Universe is Loving and looking out for me.  I’m not going to get what I want any faster by fretting about it.

Believe only good comes to me.

Stay Open for whatever arrives.

Let Go of a need for it to look a certain way.

Detach from expectations.

See if I can ask even more specifically for what I want.  Make my intention even clearer.  Renew and refresh my plans, looking for new ways.  Prepare myself to receive.  Breathe deeply and freely.  Remind myself I can.  Keep telling Good Stories.

Rest Easy.    Welcome.    Be Willing.

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