I walked out of the bathroom stall, my eyes red from a much needed, whole body and soul cry.
It wasn’t a cry from pain, or loss, it was a cry of awe and wonder mixed in with fear, my body feeling shaken yet alive.
Over the last year I had begun to have these experiences of “God.”
Having grown up catholic and leaving the church at 16, becoming an atheist for 17 years and then being on a soul search for something greater than myself since then, the word “God” was not something I used.
To me God meant the God out there, in the sky, judging, condemning – it was man’s definition of God and I didn’t want to have anything to do with it.
But something’s been shifting in me over the last few months. I’ve started to use the word God in conversations with others and it actually has a beautiful tone to it, and resonates in my heart.
But even with that, when I started to have these experiences with God over the last few months, it was unnerving to some degree (you’ll find out why in a bit).
So fast forward to just before crying in the bathroom stall and there I am listening to Caroline Myss (author, speaker and modern day mystic) at a workshop in New York on medical miracles.
She’s telling the story of a news reporter wanting to interview a cloistered nun (a nun who lives within the convent walls without contact with the outside world, spending her time in prayer and contemplation for the greater good).
After 4 years of asking and waiting to interview her, the nun finally agrees. They meet in the “box,” (like the catholic confessional boxes where you can’t see the face of the other person, just their profile).
The reporter asks many mundane questions until the nun says, “What do you really want to know?” And the reporter finally asks in a whisper, “How did you know you were being called to God?”
My heart stopped as I listened to every word.
The nun responded, “I was about 20 years old and was a very talented artist. I knew I was on track to be world famous. I had my paintings set up at an art fair, when I decided to go into the church across the street and say a prayer before selling them. I knelt down at the pew and heard and felt the words, “Come to me.”” The calling was so profound, that I left my paintings behind and walked into the convent. That was 70 years ago. I couldn’t be happier.”
My jaw dropped to the floor and tears streamed down my face.
Fast forward to the bathroom stall a few minutes later. Something was moving in me from this story. The pieces were coming together.
I walked out from the bathroom stall and out into the sunshine, eyes wet, face covered in salt running onto my lips, and a big wad of toilet paper in my hand.
I look out onto the big lawn during our break and notice Caroline standing there with a couple other ladies (she usually has about 50 people around her at the breaks).
I felt moved to talk with her. Not knowing what I was going to say, I walked over, and in true Caroline, straight forward fashion, looks at me and says, “How can I help you dear?” (it’s not one of the warm and fuzzy tones, it’s very direct and ‘get to the point’ tones – which is what I love about her).
I closed my eyes to listen in to what wanted to be said, opened my eyes and out comes, “I’m being called to God and I’m scared.” She looks at me squarely saying nothing, but nodding.
I go on to say, “The cloistered nun story really touched me.” Her reply was, “Ya, those cloistered nun stories really get ya don’t they?” And we both laughed.
She then took a breath and said, “Don’t bargain with God. Be humble, and don’t think you’re special.” I nodded in understanding, gave her a hug and walked away.
I knew exactly what she was talking about because I had done both those things – bargaining and thinking I’m special (and not being humble).
I know that’s not the path to walk with God, but my ego sure wanted it to be. You see, the fear was and is the ego not wanting to give up it’s belief in control and wanting to say, “look at ME!”.
What I know though is that when I’m centered and in alignment with God/Spirit/Oneness, there’s an unwavering peace, so I know THAT’S the right path, that’s the Truth. And as Caroline writes in her book, Anatomy of the Spirit, “True authority comes from aligning yourself to God’s will.”
So each day my purpose is to align with God’s will, not my personal will. Each day it’s an effort because little i has her ingrained way of doing things.
But each moment that I AM in alignment makes every effort worth it.
(And as of now, I don’t see myself checking in to the convent any time soon).
Categories: Gratitude, Health & Happiness, Inner Wisdom & Intuition