Releasing our attachment to outcome and finding God in the nobility of effort.
Two steps forward, one step back, sit down, spin around, stand up, shuffle right, duck, one step forward......
Trying to make progress on our goals is not as simple as plugging in coordinates on an X, Y axis and watching our growth materialize in a predictable straight line.
Progress is not linear.
This is a discouraging truth at times. We yearn for linear, predictable progress, where when we do "X", we will get "Y", but life appears to be infinitely more complex then that.
So what do we do when we are in a moment of challenge and we feel we aren't making progress, or that we are losing ground. How do we hold ourselves in those moments?
Perhaps we can pause and tap into the nobility of effort.
Perhaps we can release our attachment to outcome and just bring ourselves into the present moment. In this space we come face to face and heart to heart with honest, humble effort. In this space we also come heart to heart with God. For God loves effort.
Thomas Keating, an internationally known theologian has said:
"God will bring people and events into our lives, and whatever we may think about them, they are designed for the evolution of His life in us."
Let's spend some time to pause and feel the evolution of God in us.
When we consider that real progress might be more about God shifting something in us, than us attaining an outward goal, we suddenly come into this beautiful space of non attachment to outcome. The outcome of our goal isn't nearly as important as the shift that is happening within us.
Perhaps losing 20 pounds isn't nearly as important as learning to shift self doubt and learning to respect ourselves and our choices.
So, we can ask ourselves: how are the people or events that are challenging us right now, today, trying to shift something within us?
Perhaps we take a deep breath, and instead of trying to resolve the situation that lies outside of us, let us practice bringing our attention to the situation that lies within us. Tune into the doubt, anxieties, frustration, or anger that we might have here, how can we shift that?
When we consider that God is moving in us, to progress, not our ambitions or drives, but to develop us into people capable of loving and living whole heartedly, when we consider this, then the endless need to map linear progress melts away and we are left with this beautiful mosaic called humanity.
There will be ups and downs, spins, and drops followed by valiant surges and steady climbs. There will be colors and movement, chaos and calm. And God is in it, cheering on our honest, humble efforts.
Let us honor that effort.
Juli Larsen, CMI
Certified Meditation Instructor
For more information about our April 29, 2023 CHAOS to Calm Women's Retreat click here