Waiting for God

Out of work and needing money, my friend recently told me she’s not looking for a job. She’s waiting for God. You might think I’d feel she ought to be more practical—or probably you think she ought to be more practical—but no. I think that’s just as good a way as any to find employment. Maybe even a better way. Who else knows where all the jobs are, much less that one specific job she ought to have?

Then, you might ask, why didn’t you get the job you think you really ought to have? But maybe that’s the job you did get. You hate the job? Perhaps you need to learn to love it. Am I kidding? Only slightly.

But waiting with deliberate intention is a little different than simply falling into a spot that you’ve found yourself. A little different—then again, maybe it really is the right spot for you.

But back to the idea of waiting for God, by which I mean, waiting with intention, waiting with God in mind and God’s ability, even God’s desire perhaps, to guide you, and to “reward” you for turning to the Source of all.

The best position we can be in, in life, is surrendered. Yet can we do it? I have heard that God surrenders you, that we can’t do it. But we can consider the possibility and try to understand why this alignment with the will of God is the best approach to being here on earth.

We might be making every mistake in the book in the meantime, but all those failures and disappointments can lead to more humility and more sense that very little can be done by our design. We find that fortuitously the more we let go, the better the outcomes. The timing of occurrences improves.

Do we have to be 100 percent surrendered to get what we need in an harmonious and timely fashion? Well, no. I haven’t seen that to be true. Less than perfectly surrendered people will have good moments in which their thoughts and feelings soar above what they’re generally capable of, and voila, something in their outer circumstances changes. They might now be a little transformed, having had the experience, but are they perfectly in tune with Divine Will? I’m sure they would like that, but recreating that momentary state might take a while. And for part of the explanation, I have to refer back to my blog piece entitled “Why Not Me?”

Indeed, we all have a grand potential, but probably we don’t recognize that fact and fall back to earth under the force of our own gravitational pull.

Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.—Samuel Beckett

Is it hard? If you think so. Is it easy? Could be for you.

Should we turn to God and surrender? Great idea, Worth a try once in a while.

Having trouble with punctuation? Maybe my ebook titled Punctuation will help. It’s a good reference, anyway. https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/120620

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Promotion

My friend and I agreed that everyone these days is promoting something, and we’re swamped by these promotional posts, emails, phone calls, targeted site ads, and whatever other innovations people think up. We also agreed that consumers only shell out money for what we really want, so a lot of these promotional efforts are mostly a resource drain benefiting only the postal service, which counts on mail promotion for billions in revenue per year.*

 Then I was listening to a spiritual talk in which some congregants were saying that God is the one who promotes. They meant it, however, in the sense that God is the one who advances a career. They were talking about King David and the fact that he didn’t seek the kingship, but God was the one who made him king. Nonetheless, I also had to take what they said to mean that God is the one who promotes the service or business.

 Of course we feel we have to do something to get the word out and really that would seem to be the right thing to do. But at the same time, I’m not sure that’s how people connect with goods and services. Much occurs through networking—someone mentions a book, a product, a practitioner, and you give it a shot—and we can interpret that in the “meant to be” category if it works out.

 If we have something to promote, how do we know what we should do? I think “be reasonable” might serve as an initial guide. Do what is humanly reasonable to get your name out there, to establish your brand, and to make finding you and your product or service “by accident” a simple proposition.

 On the other hand, desperation and the expenditure of more money (and time and energy) than you can afford doesn’t seem to make all that much sense.

 Let’s go back to the idea that only the people who really want what you have to offer are going to buy from you. You can’t force individuals to get on your bandwagon if they don’t honestly want to. To return to the “what’s meant to be” train of thought, why not allow whatever is meant to be to occur? Take the results of your efforts with some degree of stoicism and accept that the people who are meant to patronize you will do so and the others won’t, that pushing harder isn’t the best approach.

On Facebook some people post about themselves constantly. They’ve been told that potential customers, readers, clients want to know who they are. But what comes out often seems to be extreme narcissism, and if that’s who they are, then maybe they’ll find no payoff in presenting that quality under a spotlight.

 Relax. Let the Source, God, the one who runs the universe, do the promotion. Let’s make ourselves available by putting out the word, then take a breather. Since we can’t force the universe to cooperate with us, let’s spend a little time learning to cooperate with the universe. And have some trust.

 *(By the way if you want to opt out of some of some categories of promotional snail mail, go to DMAchoice.org. Supposedly that works.)

 Not to be pushy, but maybe you want to read a short story of mine, “Civil Disobedience”: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/101224  No charge whatsoever.

A Scorecard From God

If only God would send us scorecards as to how we’re doing, fully marked up with what we need to work on next. That would make our lives pretty clear. Of course we’d complain and argue, and we wouldn’t believe him. “No, really, I didn’t… Really! I didn’t!”

But God doesn’t do that. You think he does, maybe. You think that everything around you is a confirmation of how you’re doing with God. You have a nice house, a husband, kids, a decent job. Or the opposite. You’re broke, broken down, you don’t have anything you want. 

Despite what you’ve heard from certain factions in the positive-thinking camp, these payoffs don’t tell you a thing about how you’re doing with God.

That’s why a scorecard would be nice. But we don’t get one.

 The soul is not only sacred, but it’s pretty well hidden in most ordinary human presentations. We get fragments from within, but much is secret. That’s sort of similar to a seed growing within the soil. We can’t take away the soil to see what’s happening down there, now can we?

 God isn’t like a corporate employer giving six-month reviews. We have to work in the dark and let that sense of needing to do more spur us on. Oh, yes, of course, we sometimes get glimpses that make us hungry to do better than we have. We get both the carrot and the lash. Often difficult times deepen our efforts. We need help. We need to go further, dig deeper, come nearer.

 I had a close friend who worked diligently on her spiritual growth, and she was a person different from anyone I’d ever met. To enter her presence was to become intoxicated by her essence. I mean genuinely intoxicated.

 My friend’s goal was to die in a good state. And I’m sure she did. That was her focus. That was almost the only thing important to her. But she also had a big responsibility in life—her husband, who seemed to have dementia. Perhaps the sole reward she asked for in this world was not to die before him, leaving him without some needed care. That wish was granted.

 God’s presence in her life was obvious, but that doesn’t mean her life was easy. Her life was difficult in her early years as well as toward the end. But in a way she did get her scorecard from God in her absorption in Him.

 And what more might she have actually wanted?

 Transformation happens under the soil. The process is a stealthy one, and we have no idea what’s going on down there.

 As I said, we do get glimpses. And then they fade. We feel as if we don’t have a spiritual bone in our bodies.

 Who we really are is hidden and simply a mystery.

 We keep working on it because we seem to have no choice.

 Have a read of my novel of the lost years of Jesus for about a dollar: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/91472 .

 Thanks.