Hawvian lachma d’sunqanan yaomana
Give us this day our daily bread
Grow through us this moment’s bread and insight
In the introduction to this series, I mentioned Dr. Neil Douglas Klotz’s comment, “there’s nothing wrong with the traditional Lord’s Prayer. It‘s just limited”. Here’s another great example.
In the traditional Lord’s prayer, we may think Jesus is only talking about the actual bread that we eat. Martin Luther expanded it to include “food, clothing, home, family, daily work…everything we need from day to day”. (Luther’s Small Catechism).
But insight? Lachma refers to both bread and understanding, or insight. This is so profound and speaks to the very nature of life itself.
Because we’re in Earth School for the soul, everything comes to us as teacher here. I’m very big on the saying, “life happens for you and not to you.” It gets us beyond the victim mentality we can so easily slip into, and helps us see the deeper benevolent nature of life. There is meaning and purpose in everything we experience here.
So we can move beyond “why me?” to “what’s in this for me to learn?” Or, “what is this moment teaching me?”That’s a huge shift! When we play the victim, we are in the position of constantly resisting life. “This shouldn’t be happening. Not to me!” But “what’s in this for me”? opens us up to life.
I know how this sounds. “Really? I get layed off, or my spouse leaves me. I get the big C diagnosis, and I’m supposed to say ‘What’s in this for me?’ What are you, insane?” I know this sounds like “pie in the sky” or a very “pollyannaish” thing to even contemplate. So I want to first say, “Not right away.” Of course, when something really difficult happens, the last thing we need is to lay on ourselves, “If I’m really ‘spiritual’, I’m not supposed to be angry or scared. I’m supposed to ask the ‘spiritual’ question.”
So we give ourselves grace and time. Grace to allow whatever is going on within, to just be. Just be what it is.
It’s often only after some time, that we can even begin to honestly ask, “what’s in this for me?” And if the experience is especially difficult, it will often take time to see or learn what IS in an experience for us.
So many times I had people come into my office upset about something that had happened recently. Only to return somewhere down the road, and say things like “Getting layed off was the best thing for me. If that hadn’t happened, then ___ wouldn’t have happened.” Many times someone came in and talked about the new perspective on life their divorce or their cancer gave them. It takes time. So be graceful to yourself here.
But when we are able, the sooner we can ask the question, “what’s in this for me to learn?”, the sooner we can look at the moment more objectively. And the sooner we can see it for what it is, without our judgement or commentary. The sooner we can begin to put one foot forward, and make the constructive decisions we need to move forward.
The poet Dorothy Hunt wrote, “Peace is the current moment without judgement. Peace is the moment where everything that is, is welcome.” I love that. It’s hard to live at times, but I love it’s Truth. Letting the moment, the experience just be, is incredibly freeing.
Life IS happening FOR you. There is an underlying benevolence to life. Jesus talks about it in Gina Lake’s channeling books from Jesus. Marianne Williamson and the Course in Miracles talk about there being “a curriculum specifically designed for our unique soul’s needs.” A curriculum of experiences. Few of which are written in stone. The choices we make in the moment, lead us to other possibilities for experience.
Our job is to show up totally present to the moment, and listen to what it is telling us. What it is teaching us.
And listen to what it is telling us to do next. The next step. Just the next step. We often want to know 9 steps down the road what is going to happen, or we try and manipulate outside circumstances to arrive at where we think we should end up.
When all along, there is the Infinite Intelligence of the Divine/Universe guiding us. Within this moment. Then within the next moment. It knows the way. It knows how life is set up to work well. It should. After all, this Intelligence created all the inner workings of life. It knows how the pieces fit together. One with the next.
The present moment is our friend. Not an “enemy” to be resisted. Our calling is to be only in this moment. Paying attention. What insight is it giving me?
I believe there is also a teaching about lifestyle here. Live not only in the moment, but be content with having enough for this moment. This day. That will free us, and clear space for us to be able to pay attention to our moments. Give away what you don’t need. Find your joy and life in seeing others having what they need. Ghandi put it this way, “Live simply, so others may simply live”.
You are Love,
Pastor Tim Tengblad
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