Such a heavy question. Someone brought this up as a topic for a meeting the other day – “how do I know what is my will vs. my Higher Power‘s will?” It’s something that I’ve been exploring in this phase of my journey, so I shared something like:
I’m learning that my Higher Power’s will is to find my identity in the relationship I have with my Higher Power. In my case, I choose to see my relationship as one of being a child of a loving God. In that relationship, I find the fullness of who I am meant to be. I find the security, peace and wholeness that I so desperately want and need. My years of addiction have been about finding my identity in my work, or my relationships. I sought peace — or freedom from pain — in sex, alcohol and drugs. I now understand — now came to believe — that a Power greater than myself can in fact restore me to sanity. In this case, sanity for me means wholeness, peace and security.
As for what my Higher Power wants me to do with my life, I’m understanding today that to be: live authentically, with compassion. So first, I must peel back the masks and the “coping skills” I’ve built up over the years. I must unlearn the behavior to please others at all costs and avoid conflict. In doing so, I worried too much what other people thought of me; I wanted to be liked, to be loved — because I had cut myself off from the one relationship that could fulfill me, the one with My Higher Power (see earlier point!) I avoided conflict because I thought that would cause people to not like me. But, in doing so, I lost my voice – I lost my identity – I lost my authenticity.
So, find my security and wholeness in relationship to my Higher Power, and live authentically with compassion.
I then feel like I was given a chance to live this lesson out. And currently, I’m doing my best to do just that – by the grace of my Higher Power.
Having just locked in on starting my own business, I was called about two job interviews within days of completing my business plan for a mini-loan competition. One is very similar to the position I lost a year ago because of my addiction; the other could be an interesting stepping stone to my new business, but ironically is BACK in the small town I just moved from – literally – yesterday! Irony.
So, the question comes up – what is my Higher Power’s will for my life? Does He want me to continue with my own business venture? Does he want me to return to Corporate IT? Does he want me to build more deliberately to my own business via one of these other jobs as a temporary stepping stone?
As I’ve been talking and reflecting and praying and meditating on this – knowing that I don’t have to have an answer right away! – I’ve started to come to this possible outcome and lesson.
Given those options, He doesn’t really have an opinion. After all, I was given the ability to make choices. Unlike other animals on the planet, I do have an intellect and capabilities and emotions to choose.
So, given that I’m not choosing to use – my Higher Power’s will is to take whichever road I would prefer…BUT, to do so without losing my identity or authenticity while doing so. That’s the potential lesson from this.
So, returning to Corporate IT could be fine – as long as I do it differently this time, and keep my security and identity in my relationship with my Higher Power – and live authentically with compassion.
And launching my own business at 42 and following what feels like a passion and dream is also ok – as long as I don’t put too much stock or identity into it and its mission.
And with that perspective, I’m finding peace.
I don’t have to worry about finding the “right job” – the one “God has ordained for me to do next.” Instead, it’s possible that I am given the possibility to choose, but to live through that differently this time. And, in that freedom comes peace – in that realization of what my Higher Power’s will might really be after all comes strength – and through all of this, I feel alive.
So – the short answer – Embrace life, Live authentically, Love compassionately!
From my daily meditation, “The Book of Awakening” by Mark Nepo
Endgame: there’s nothing to do but keep dancing
Either by erosion from without or by shedding from within — and often by both — we are forced to live more authentically. And once the crisis that opened us passes, the real choice becomes: will we continue such authentic living?
From my daily meditation, “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young:
It is easy to make an idol of routine, finding security within the boundaries you build around your life. When you cling to old ways and sameness, you resist My work within you. I want you to embrace all that I am doing in your life, finding your security in Me alone.
- Book Review: The Joy of Compassionate Connecting by James Prieto (blogcritics.org)