Peace starts with ME.


Being defeated is often a temporary condition. 
Giving up is what makes it permanent. 
~ Marilyn vos Savant 

Let’s face it…at one point or another, we all feel let down by life.
It’s been said that it doesn’t matter how many times you fall – it’s how many times you get back up.
So today I want to talk about my journey from pain to peace.
There was a time, not to long ago when the blogs I write would have been much different from what they are today.
My blogs would have been filled with images of fear, guilt and regret.
When my life crumbled around me and the only thing that I had left was the memories of ‘What once was’, I was confused, and disoriented.
The day that it all changed for me was the day I picked up my journal and started flipping through the pages.
I came across a particular entry that was over two years old by this time. The entry was a prayer to the Lord to ease my burdens. I asked specifically for a home where my children and I were safe.  A place where we had financial stability, security, and a sanctuary from the rest of the world.
At the time I wrote this prayer in my journal, my son had been dead for only 5 months.
My marriage was in shambles, and we were existing off welfare.
My husband had given up on life, on us, and on our kids.
I, myself was on the brink of suicide.
  I was nearing the bottom of my downward spiral.
So when I read the prayer two years later, I realized that every thing I had asked for had been given.
But before it could be given, the Lord first had to REMOVE certain people and situations from my life.
It was in that moment that I realized that sometimes the things that we view as tragedies, or hardships are actually just the beginning phase of an answered prayer.
That is when I started to let go of a lot of the fear that I carried in my heart.
I am like a butterfly.
I am completely transformed from the person I once was. There is very little resemblance to the “old” and “new” me.
It’s like that old saying…
“Just when the caterpillar thought her life was coming to an end…
She became a butterfly.”
That is exactly what happened in my life. The Lord got a hold of my heart and transformed me into a new creature.
As I look back, I feel that I need to share some of my experiences and the wisdom and knowledge that I gained by going through the fiery furnace and being reborn.
My greatest lesson was learning that  “Peace begins with me.”
These few words are so simple, yet they contain a message so profound as to be the only key to the utopia our troubled heart seeks.
(Please keep in mind that my words alone cannot open doors.
But if you will try to receive them with your hearts, I pray that you will comprehend them with your minds in perfect harmony.)
Almost from the time we gain the ability to process thought, we set forth on a journey that takes us further and further away from the beautiful destination we seek.
As we mistakenly journey outwards rather than inwards, we begin to feel lost and disoriented.
Fear rises within us and we become embroiled in greed, criticism, judgments, hatred, and disquiet.
Every aspect of our lives becomes a hurdle to clear and an enemy to fight.
We lose sight of the beauty that resides within us, the light of Christ that we were all born with.
‘If only things were different,’ we scream, as we view the errors of the world and its effects upon us, as our enemies.
I used to miss out on so much in life because my mind was cluttered with garbage thoughts like,  “When I get more money…I could be happy then”

“If we could just settle the conflict in our marraige…I will find peace.”

We believe so strongly that we must find this beautiful state rather than just experiencing – being it – that we frequently miss its serene presence.
We are on a hunt, trying to capture our prey.
We dress the part,
we speak the part,
we completely submerge ourselves in all these costumes in an attempt to capture something outside us,
when the thing we seek is already a part of us…
No costume needed!
Few of us realize that the only enemy any of us have is ‘ourselves’.
Until we understand that, we can never truly experience peace because that which we are becomes covered up so deeply in all of the costumes that we are wearing, that peace is prevented from expressing itself.
Most of us are not aware that we live our lives in constant fear, the absolute polar opposite to the nature of our own divine essence – the polar opposite to love and peace.
Last week I was able to enjoy a vacation free from the fear that used to be as much a part of me as oxygen.
I traveled in strange cities, and spoke to complete strangers, and enjoyed every single second of it all. I was in a stae of Peace and surrender the entire time.

Letting go of the fear and accepting the peace is the greatest gift I have ever given myself.

Our constant drive for power is the result of fear –

fear that is itself fed by our misguided survival strategies.

Unless we are guided away from this mistaken view of ourselves and the world around us, our childlike perceptions follow us into the ‘grown-up’ world.

We cannot change people;

the way others think,

act or behave.

We can’t change the weather

or prevent that which has passed,

but we can change the world.

Everyone’s idea of peace is different… but peace is not a concept; it is the reality of our own identity and in accordance to its own nature.

Peace cannot exist in the presence of fear.

Fear is a powerful, destructive, negative emotion whose energy is fuelled by our anticipation of what may happen but probably won’t.

Fear can only be regenerated by its own survival.

Peace is a beautiful empowering energy that sits within our hearts, always in quiet acceptance of where we are now – at this moment.

That which I am is Peace and is constant.

When I am still – I know this.

When I am still – I know that Peace begins with me – right now.

This, of all the lessons I have learned, is the one that I want to share with the world.

Getting to a place of Peace was NOT easy.
It was one of the hardest battles I have ever fought…because I was fighting my own ego.
I had to teach my ego to let go…and trust.
It is my deepest prayer that my words will somehow touch your heart and give you hope that a life lived with a peaceful heart is possible for everyone, and that a PEACEFUL HEART is the way to change the world.
Butterfly in sand
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