May you lie down in peace my friend,
May you rise up full of wonder.
Wrap yourself in the One
morning after morning,
O refresh your weary soul,
Your only one, perfect and pure.
If you do not keep your own soul alive,
How will you welcome the morning light?
How will you welcome the morning?
Listen to the One,
the song of the morning stars,
Let the One open your heart.
-- Medieval Jewish Poem
Editor's Note: While this articles uses the term "Voice for God", please substitute any other word or name that best resonates with you: Spirit, Universal Mind, Creator, Love...
Although the Voice for God is always present and available, God will not speak to us until we have invited Him/Her to enter our awareness. This is the first step in aligning ourselves with our spiritual power. It is the only step that we must take on our own, in that it is the step of inviting and calling upon the Holy Spirit, Voice for God, or Universal Mind.
Your personal relationship with God, although in essence similar to mine, has different characteristics, which make it an entirely loving one for you. For this reason, you may adopt some religious symbols to represent the communication with God within you. Or, you may have found that over the years the character, the essence of God, speaks to you in a way beyond and outside of any structured previous educational or religious experience. Or, you may find that there is a blend for you of the two.
Recognizing When God Is Speaking to You
For us to truly feel ready to get beyond plaguing thoughts of fears, anticipations, worries, and concerns, our first step here is to recognize and appreciate how God is always with us, always walking by our side. How do you know when God is speaking to you? Actually, if you reflect back on the most awesome and intense experiences of your life, you will recall the feeling, the essence, and the tenor of your communication with God.
For many of us, we learned what this experience was like when we turned to God only during a time of special importance, such as an emergency. Can you remember your first true awareness of God's voice? It may have been a moment of remarkable clarity in an instantaneous discovery that God was always there for you, and was waiting for your invitation. When you invited His/Her presence in your life, God signaled you in an unmistakable way that He/She was, is, and always will be by your side. In a multitude of ways since that moment you may have become able to sense when you have opened to God's light.
We now recall, as in the recollection of distant past echoes, that the moment above was by far not the first moment that God had been with you, for God never has left. It is the first moment when you were willing enough to be open and the first moment that you discovered one of many channels of awareness of His/Her exquisite and respectful availability to you.
What Internal Cues Signal the Voice for God to You?
What internal cues signal the Voice for God to you? The Voice for God may be a very quiet sense of knowing, or it may come to you as an unmistakable whisper. In one instant, it seems a multitude of thoughts come to you with great clarity. God may come to you visually, or in the form of clear physical events showing you love's path. God may come to you through the words of another and you just know they are the words meant for you.
The form that the Voice for God takes for you depends completely on how you are ready to receive it. Of course, we need not ask only in times of distress or great celebration. As soon as we are ready, no matter how great or small the guidance needed, God is our ready companion. It is that simple.
Removing Our Attention from Ego's Fears
In virtually every circumstance leading us to feelings of discomfort, we have placed our attention upon ego fears. All fears can be reduced to one core illusion, the illusion that we are alone and not worthy of God (because of our guilt over this or that). We can take infinite comfort in always remembering what we have always known. God is around us, within us, and a part of us at all times. At any given moment we decide if we are available to the Voice for God, the Holy Spirit. This is a bit like God's radio station always broadcasting. Yet we must tune in to be able to listen.
You may know what you have just read rings true. Yet, if you are like so many of us, we have many ways of entangling our minds, which bring to thought that we (and our particular set of problems) are the exception. For many of us, we have seen the intervention of God in our lives throughout the years in a multitude of examples. In many cases, we thought that we had come to the ultimate end of our proverbial rope. There were times when we may have felt extreme loss, where we had felt abused or misused, where we could not see our way clear due to of lack of resources, where we felt personality flaws and felt alienated from others. We may have seen whole lifestyles change or be destroyed right in front of our faces.
Challenges Turned Into Blessings
And yet, throughout all of this, and throughout everything that is happening in our lives today, God is still with us, and has helped us see through what we thought was the ultimate catastrophe, the ultimate loss, the ultimate proof that we could be unworthy of love. As we look back on many of these circumstances, we find that eventually, each of these seemingly painful maladies turned into a blessing, and each of these existed strictly for our own benefit, to help us to see that the blocks to love that we have constructed are unnecessary.
With each lesson that we learn through God and through communication with the Voice for God, we realize that survival is a state of mind, and that answers to our fears, and to our prayers, are always at hand. By deciding to remember in faith that God is always with us, communication with God can happen anytime that we want, not just when we judge that our need for God deserves enough. God does not put those constraints upon His/Her receiving us. We have done that by way of thought habits of guilt and shame.
Who are we to deserve to speak with God? We are His/Her children. Your loved ones can do nothing to cancel out your love for them. There is nothing we can do to be judged as undeserving of the love of God. Our step along the path of increasing comfort and attunement with the Voice for God, the Holy Spirit, requires the use of daily preparation and many personalized methods that we will construct for ourselves to rediscover and reinforce what we know in our hearts is already there. God is with us, God will never leave us, and all that happens for our benefit.
Gratitude: Choosing A Different Way
By sensitizing our minds to listening and tuning in to the Voice for God, the presence of God will become increasingly available to us, and easier to feel within the deepest recesses of our hearts. We consciously put faith first, faith in our willingness to set aside our ego fears and replace them with a mind filled with gratitude. Now, instead of seeing the problem, coloring it with fear, anticipating the fight with potential catastrophe, we choose another way. We ask God to help us recall a short list of gratitudes from times which were similar and in which we discovered tremendous blessings from those challenges. In preparing us to hear the Voice for God, we set the groundwork with gratitude. We soon feel our minds opening, our tension decreasing. We sense the light of God.
Gratitude is the reliving of miracles that have been put before us to help resolve what we thought were omens of fear and uncontrolled pain of many forms. Let us embrace the belief that whatever challenge is being shown to you now is like any other lesson that you have been shown. We had fallen into holes, yet we have been shown our way out. The lessons have helped us to be stronger and face future challenges with a more intimate awareness of God's loving intercession.
So, as our first step in walking through this challenge with God's assistance, write down similar circumstances that have been resolved through your cooperative listening to the Voice for God which in turn helped you deepen your understanding of God. Although you may have felt so uptight, and even preoccupied concerning your current fears before you approached your altar, take the time to set your pain aside and do this simple exercise. Recall gratitude first and this will clear the way for clear communication with the Voice for God.
Book by this Author
Choosing Miracles: Peace of Mind is a Decision
by Scott Anstadt, Ph.D, DCSW.
This book consists of 10 chapters, each of which describe key concepts leading to deeper and effortless awareness of who we really are using the eyes of God in all our activities. We see the power of love in all we encounter, as blocks to love fall away and we warm ourselves in the rays of God's gracious light.
About The Author