Tag: peace

Reflect on these statements and then act

32- Think about theseHere are 7 exceptional statements that would make you pause and think. The more important element though is to appreciate the logic and then apply it in day to day life. The focus of this post is to encourage you to apply the logic in our everyday life and thereby enrich the quality of our daily living.

Make Peace with your past so that it doesn’t spoil your present.  Don’t use the excuses related to the past to justify your failures of the present. Instead, delve into your inner spirit and challenge yourself to make today and your future something special. Have no regrets. Failures/ poor marks in exams, failed relationships of the past, the criticism and taunts, the anger and frustrations have to be left behind in doorway of the past. However, if there is something from the past that has relevance to your personal improvement, do make it a point to learn from it. This is especially true of negative feedback given by others which may have been hurtful then but from which you can profit now.

What others think of you is none of your business. Your business is to focus on what you have to do. Never make the mistake of doing something to please others. Sometimes you have to be upfront, honest and frank even if it means displeasing people in authority or people with whom you share a very close relationship or bond. However, at times you must pause and think about any suggestions or comments or feedback that others express for there could be opportunities for you to learn from it.

Time heals almost everything; Give the time, sometime. There are times when you feel low. Other times you in physical or emotional pain. One tends to rationalize the pain but often it seems to keep coming back in waves and overwhelm us. Fortunately for us, time is a great healer. While we may not forget a hurt or pain, over time the intensity of it gets reduced. Losing a loved one or a jolt in a relationship are deeply painful experiences and the immediate reaction is to go into depression and despondency. If one can tide over the initial  shock and hurt, time is sure to give you  relief and peace.

No one is the reason for your happiness except YOU yourself. A critical mistake we make is searching for happiness in external happenings and material things. A new mobile phone or a new dress would certainly make us happy but it won’t last for long because the craving to get something new would forever haunt us. On the other hand if we find happiness in the simple pleasures of daily life, could be the bright sunlight or the tasty breakfast or the mere thought of having a good day, it would last longer and become more meaningful. Happiness is a choice you make every moment. You form that habit and happiness will envelope you.

Don’t compare your life with others; you have no ideas what their journey is all about. Jealousy is a very human emotion and unfortunately a very poor emotion to retain. The root cause of jealousy is our tendency to compare ourselves with those who are more successful or happy or richer than us. If we compared our self with those less blessed and less privileged than us then we would value our life and our riches with greater understanding and joy. The trouble with comparison is not just that we use the wrong benchmark but that we compare very selectively. We see their success but never pay attention to their hard work, their sacrifices, the pain they underwent and the numerous failures they have had to overcome to reach where they are. Understanding their journey will make us appreciate our blessings in the correct perspective.

Stop thinking too much; it is alright not to know all the answers. We plan, we think about the future, we rue the past, we imagine that we could have been even better off if we just had a little luck and the right connections. Perhaps we are also trying to gain all the knowledge but not really using it.  At times we are trying to beat google at its own game. We try to be pragmatic and minimize our emotions lest we succumb to our emotions when we take decisions. We are human beings because we have emotions and so logic and knowledge while being very useful, would not make us better human beings unless we let our emotions have a say too. It is ok to be less informed but more connected with life.

Smile; you don’t own all the problems in the world. At the end of the day everything boils down to just sporting a smile.  As they say, a smile is curve that sets everything right. If you can wake up with a smile and retain it the whole day and go to bed with it, then life would be just perfect. Aim for such perfection. In my view a SMILE is an acronym for See My Instant Life Energizer.  You can read about it by clicking on the following link http://poweract.blogspot.in/2010/01/smile.html

Try these

  • Using all the alphabets of your first name, middle name and last name list out at least 5 English words. How many of those words represent your nature. E.g. Thomas Jeffery Hanks – thanks, meet, fat, same, shame, far, mat, most, share, hare, etc.
  • List out the names of 3 people who you are envious / jealous of. For each write down 3 attributes they posses that makes you envious of them. Can you also list out 3 reasons why they deserve the success they have attained?
  • What are the 3 questions that keep recurring off and on? Any reasons why you feel threatened by these questions or uncomfortable trying to find answers to these questions?
  • Make a list of 5 of your favorite jokes. Share it with your friends the next time you have a get-together.
  • What has been your worst personal experience to date? How have you coped with it? Have you got over it ?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Inner peace

9- 14 April 15 -Inner peaceDespite our best efforts to retain our equanimity, we often end up upset, annoyed, irritated, hurt, frustrated and fearful at times. Obviously these emotions make us anxious, stressed and could trigger panic in us too. We lament that we do not have peace of mind and quickly delve into finding a balm in our religious texts, search for spiritual insights or bottle up our agony keeping silent and aloof or going the other extreme by putting on a false bravado and pretence of exuberance. No matter what we do, finding inner peace becomes more challenging, stressful and at times completely elusive. The reason peace eludes us is because we hope  for peace within by seeking its solutions outside.

Like happiness, peace is an inside job. What one needs to do is focus on the following:

Appreciate what you have – It is a natural human tendency to take for granted all that we are blessed with. Unfortunately, when do not really become aware of how blessed we are be it in the form of good health, a loving family, material and financial wellbeing etc. our mind focuses on what we do not have. We then crave for it, get obsessed with it and if we are fortunate to get it turn our attention very soon to another one of our longings/ desires.

Accept the reality but work to change it – Change is the one constant in our life and far too often every change does bring with it a host of challenges. Initially we fight change hoping that the change is temporary, then we hope to adjust to it and most of the time thereafter we keep fighting to resist accepting the change. On the other hand if one accepts the reality, as we often do when we lose a loved one, then we can focus better on coping with the reality that stares us in the face. Passed over for a promotion, sudden pink slip got, sudden financial outflow for unexpected illness of a loved one, these and many more are changes that swoop down on us, give us a hard knock and yet give us scope to cope and offer us new insights, fresh possibilities and certainly hope for something even better.

Seek solutions instead of brooding over problems – Every problem disturbs ones peace of mind. However, a problem remains a problem as long as one does not find a solution. So one can restore one’s peace of mind only when we find solutions to our problems. As long as we do not attempt to find solutions to our problem we are merely sacrificing our peace of mind. Parents have problems with truant children; spouses have marital discords off and on, there are numerous problems that arise at the work place, fresh graduates have problems finding jobs, there many who have to cope with illness and pain and the list goes on. Instead of worrying about the problem seek solutions be it asking for help, seeking expert advice, finding alternatives, resolving differences or simply accepting what can’t be changed.

Focus on the above you would never notice people or situations impacting your life and disturbing your peace of mind for you have already taken charge of your negative emotions by consciously pursuing actions that yield positive results.

Here is a cartoon that aptly encompasses all the 3 points.

Inner-Peace-Accept RealityTry these:

  • When disturbed, what are the feelings / emotions that overwhelm you?  Anger / frustration / helplessness / sadness / emptiness / agitation / confusion / panic. How do you cope with these feelings so as to calm yourself down?
  • What are you favorite stress busters? Check if these stress busters have turned into addictions (e.g. smoking). Think of new possibilities / ways that can become stress busters.

This post is courtsey www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Forgive and…

I firmly believe a great many prayers are not answered because we are not willing to forgive someone. Dwight L. Moody

When we hold a grouse against another, we not only carry a deep resentment but there is a lot of ill will that we wish upon that person.  We work up a frenzy within us, seek retribution in return for our agony that we endure and take delight in our foes distress and pain. We even convince ourselves that forgiveness is a crime and so we cling on to our morbid pleasure of hating that person and slyly look out for some ill happening in that person’s life. Notice that in this whole process there are three things that are actually backfiring on us. We are not able to focus on anything constructive, we do not generate or emit positive energy and we are obsessed with our foe and end up neglecting our own self. It is precisely these reasons that impede us from praying in faith and reaping its bounty. Let us understand each of these impediments a little more in depth.

Have you ever tried to concentrate on some task soon after going through an ordeal? You would notice that you are distracted, a sinking feeling constantly overpowers your emotions and the task on hand seems overwhelming. Your thoughts constantly seem to go back to the source of our discomfort and hence you are uneasy and disturbed.  Under the circumstances even a pleasurable task like watching TV or reading a good book seems like a burden. Something similar happens when we carry a grudge and are unable to forgive another. Then our joys are muted, our prayers sound hollow and we lack the conviction to seek in hope and receive in faith. Obviously then it is no wonder that most times our prayers remain unanswered when our hearts are fully of revenge and there is no space for peace and tranquility.

With angst in our heart, revenge in our mind and ill will overpowering our emotions, all the positive energy is sapped out of us.  When we transmit negative energy around, it is near impossible to expect positive outcomes.  Just as a rotting corpse will attract the vultures and the wild animals, negative energy will attract only cold vibes, churn up the existing tranquility and saddled us with undesirable outcomes. When the environment is vitiated the tempo slows down, our actions are leaden and our prayers are half hearted, cold and sprayed with the foam of hate, wickedness and malice which has filled out heart and refuses to subside.

Finally, when we cannot forgive, our mind, thoughts and heart have only the destruction and ill will for our foe uppermost in our mind. With our concentration on our foe so overpowering there is little time for us to pray for our own needs and even if we did mange it, most times it would be so negative in its desires (possibly seeking bad tidings for our foe) that the prayers cannot be answered. Yet we continue to pray partly mechanically, partly in fond hope and mainly to unburden our consciousness. With the spirit missing out of prayer, it is no wonder that our prayers remain unanswered. The best way out is then to forgive our enemies, cleanse our heart and mind and then pray fervently and lo and behold even if our prayers are answered with a NO we will accept that answer with gratefulness.

Remember: “Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” Paul Boese

Try this:

  1. It is not easy to forgive someone who has wronged you a lot. Yet if you want to, it is better to take help from a matured common friend who can facilitate the forgiving process.  Sometimes the person you haven’t forgiven is long gone from your life and yet the resentment stays.
  2. Read some stories  from the Chicken Soup series on forgiveness and empathize wit those who have shared their stories of forgiveness.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Being content

He has enough who is contented with little. Anon

Contentment is the one contentious issue that is at the heart of most human problems be it relationships, personal illness or simply being happy. For proof simply revisit the 7 deadly sins of Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth and you will making a startling discovery that each of these sins is a result of lack of contentment. This is the right time for each of us to also pause and introspect as to what is it that will bring us contentment and peace. Words like more money, better job, an ideal spouse etc. are too vague and can at best be compared to a shadow not a clear blue print of what we seek.  How often has it occurred to us that we go to a restaurant and after placing our order see the waiter serving something looking more yummy on the neighboring table and then we crave for what is not ours. Contentment can begin only if we are clear in our mind and heart as to what we really want.

We are very indecisive about our choices simply because we have too many choices and each looks more appealing than the next.  How many of us own more than one watch? To tell the time one watch is more than enough yet there are many of us who would love to own more watches. The mobile phone is perhaps a more apt example in today’s context since we are fascinated by the features and style, rarely pausing to think if we would utilize anything more than the basic functions for 95% of our time. Too many choices therefore tempt us, trigger emotions of need and want finally ending up in us succumbing to our emotions.  A study of people buying at duty free shops at the airport lounges are an eye opener for in addition to the choices there is the lure of ‘duty free’ and the pride of premium shopping being done. Noting can be more ironic than seeing a teetotaler buy his quota of liquor simply because that is the done thing and is often flaunted to guests who like a nip or two.

The most content people are those who are pragmatic and limit their needs. This is done by the reverse process of accepting what is available with gratefulness and good cheer instead of actively seeking choices and then trying to match it to meet our emotional need and our financial wherewithal.  In a world that is consumer centric, marketing and advertisement driven and designed to lure the gullible, the temptations are too strong to be suppressed. There are other pressures too like social pressure, family pressures, emotional needs that fuel our desires and wants and the net result is that we pacify our desires without being content. In the days of yore, the most content people would perhaps have been the religious leaders and gurus for they chose to limit their wants and found that they attained bliss thereafter. Even that bastion is now crumbling and only a very conscious awareness can help us outline our bare necessities and thereafter we can enjoy the fruits of contentment.

Remember: “True contentment depends not upon what we have; a tub was large enough for Diogenes, but a world was too little for Alexander.” Charles Caleb Colton

Try this:

  1. Do a little spring cleaning and try to get rid of the accumulated stuff that you have never utilized during the past 6 months or those which you will never use in the future. It could be footwear, clothing, greeting cards, watches etc. Many a time some items would have sentimental value but if you really cross your heart most accumulated things are kept because we can’t bear to part with it.
  2. If your best friend coveted something that you own that you are passionate about but has little sentimental value would you spontaneously gift it to your friend? Eg. You have a very beautiful picture frame that you purchased because you loved it when you saw it. Now you friend admires it longingly and expresses a wish to own it. Will you gift it spontaneously?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Praying for another

When you pray for anyone you tend to modify your personal attitude toward him. Norman Vincent Peale

Prayer is communication with the almighty and ideally prayer should be personal, spontaneous, positive and fervent. Most times our prayers are focused inwards to our happiness and occasionally for the happiness of our families, friends and relatives. Often our prayers are directed towards our request for more wealth, more riches, more peace of mind and more happiness.  Instead of focusing inwards if we attempted to focus outwards towards the people around us, the poor and downtrodden, those denied justice, the sick and suffering, unfortunate victims of war, poverty, illness and social inequality, we would perhaps get the true fulfillment of prayer and possible answers to prayers in the form of peace of mind.

The real challenge for a normal person is to suppress the natural urge to seek favors for self and actively pray for others. Surprisingly, there are times we freely do it like the times when we pray for a sick friend, a newly wedded couple, a person death bed or for those unwittingly caught in a distress situation even if we have no remote connect with them. If we are passionate sports enthusiasts with strong loyalties then we also freely and passionately pray for our team and even pray for a miracle if the team is weak or playing poorly. The challenge of true prayer can be answered when we really search our hearts and ask if we can selflessly pray for someone who has wronged us, someone we dislike immensely or for someone who is openly hostile to us or someone who treats us like an enemy.

Whether our prayers are answered or not there is one great benefit of prayer that we can sense immediately; the feeling of having unburdened and shared. Often our problems stem from the fact that we cannot share it with anyone and GOD is a good sponge who can easily absorb all our grievances, fears, worries, pleas and frustrations. The other great benefit of prayer is that when we pray for others, we suddenly begin to see the other person in a new light. We search out new virtues in the person, we discover pleasing facets of the person and we begin to share a common bond with those who we pray for. It dawns on us that perhaps we did not make the effort to really understand and appreciate the person we are praying for. Even as we pray, we also acknowledge our sins and mistakes in perhaps judging the other person incorrectly, in being critical of the person unfairly and / or ignoring the person because we didn’t really care for him /her.

Praying for others cleanses us of our guilt, removes our misconceptions of the others and helps us warm up in spirit to the other person. Our own person begins to undergo a change for suddenly we begin to feel positive, more responsible, feel an empathy with the other and crave to ensure that the other person is blessed by our prayer.

Remember: “Grant that I may not pray alone with the mouth; help me that I may pray from the depths of my heart”  Martin Luther

Try this:

  1. Make a list of 5 people whom you will pray for daily. Ensure that at least one is a family member and one is someone you do not really care for. Examine your own feelings after you have prayed for them.
  2. Not all prayers need be formal. Look at this different prayer that takes the art route. While admiring the exceptional talent and creativity of the artist, look at it also as a prayer for all those who suffered and died in revolutions the world over. Click the link and see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOMgDbcA84A

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Forgivness heals us

Forgive all who have offended you, not for them, but for yourself. Harriet Uts Nelson

It is always a tough call to forgive anyone who has harmed you in any way; be it in deeds, words or indifference. We often end up nursing a grudge and heart of heart seek some sort of revenge failing which we hope the other party gets some divine retribution. In fact should the other party have some unfortunate misery descend upon them, we take a perverse pleasure in their plight and rationalize it as ‘they deserving their punishment.’ Surprisingly what we somehow do not realize is that in the whole process we are the ones who have suffered more for our hearts were filled with the pain of the injury, our mind never letting go of ill will for the other party and life burdened with the challenge of getting even by hook or by crook.

Many a time, we tell ourselves that we have pardoned the wrong doer. Secretly we take a moral high ground that we have done a magnanimous deed. Often our pardon is more out of societal pressures, counsel of elders or a compromise so as to ensure the problem is not escalated. Pardon in most cases is just an expression used to elevate ourselves on a higher pedestal of virtue and perhaps to soothe our own mental turmoil and anguish. A pardon is not really perfect unless forgiveness is central to the process. Pardon is merely forgiveness without love where as forgiveness is pardon plus love.

Forgiveness in essence not only enables us to pardon a person, but it goes a long way in rehabilitating ourselves from the guilt that we still have to take revenge. Forgiveness cleanses us from within, removing all traces of ill will against another, suppresses our ego, seeks redemption of the wrong doer and frees us of the burden of scheming plotting and extracting revenge. Once we forgive, there is a big load off us and we suddenly begin to see our life in new light. We experience joy within and happiness all around. We have no axe to grind, no questions of ourselves and no fear or doubts that remain a Damocles sword over out head.

If we really reflect revenge and forgiveness are human traits never seen in the animal kingdom. Perhaps the fact that the human being is born with an ego that needs to be placated at all times is the reason for us getting caught up in the mire of seeking revenge and wishing ill to another. No sooner we forgive; we attain peace and experience tranquility for we are have now discovered our real self. If forgiveness can give us such bliss we need to practice forgiveness more and enjoy the fruits every moment of our life.

Remember: “There is no love without forgiveness, and there is no forgiveness without love.”  Bryant H. McGill

Try this:

  1. There are many times we can’t forgive ourselves for simple lapses like not meeting up with someone who was on death bed and who has now died or not taking the effort to keep in touch with close friends who have moved away or you have moved away from them.  How about forgiving yourself now, by writing a letter to the loved ones of the deceased appreciating the deceased. You can also write to long lost friends and if possible pay them a surprise visit.
  2. Make it a point to also read the earlier posts on Forgiveness by clicking on this link https://actspot.wordpress.com/2010/01/04/forgiveness/ There are more posts related to forgiveness that you can access in this blog by clicking on the word Forgiveness on the tags on the right of the blog page.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

This piece is on Peace

Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the presence of God no matter what the conflict.

Peace has numerous connotations from peace of mind to peace in a war zone but the underlying theme is the same – conflict. The reality that there exists a conflict is at the heart of any form of turbulence which ultimately cascades into disturbance, upheaval and chaos. Obviously under such circumstances the peace is the casualty and the occasional fragile calm that prevails sporadically is often pregnant with tension, suspicion and fear.

When viewed from the standpoint of conflict, we perhaps come to the inevitable conclusion that if we can only get rid of the conflict peace will return. Ironically though, many a time conflict can be suppressed by brute force, draconian measures and an iron hand but there will exist only a fragile peace that can disintegrate anytime. This begs the question when can we say peace exits? If we can remain calm even when there is violence, disharmony and mayhem around and trust in God that there will be a resolution to the problems that beseech us , that is when we actually experience peace. Pause for a moment and look at how your peace of mind has been disturbed when a close relative dies. We are distraught and our peace of mind is disturbed. Yet when we come to comes with the reality that  death is inevitable we can take solace in comfort of a divine presence that soothes our hearts and gives us fortitude.

Look at the numerous war zones the world over. The conflict be it in Palestine or in Kashmir or the ethnic troubles (that are particularly rampant in of some of the countries in the African continent) rage on, yet people from opposing ideologies continue to live there. It is possible that they live there perhaps due to economic compulsions, may be in the fond hope that they won’t give up their homeland but they all live in fear. Every day a new problem crops up and violence is the norm. Yet they place their trust in an infinite power called ‘God’ whose local nomenclature could vary from region to region, society to society and religion to religion. Despite the fear, there is eternal hope in the future, a tranquility in the heart and a readiness to submit to ‘God’s Will’ all of which taken together brings about ‘peace’ !

Whether seen from a philosophical point of view or from a rational point of view the reality is that conflicts exist. Similarly the reality is that peace is present in the midst of conflict for peace is a blessing from God not a mere antidote of conflict!

Remember: “Peace is the deliberate adjustment of my life to the will of God.”

Try this:

  1. The next time you are disturbed attempt to be aware of what caused the disturbance. While you must objectively seek out the external factors that triggered the disturbance pay close attention to your own response. Do you blame it on others? Do you shirk your responsibilities? Are you making a mountain out of a mole hill? Do you get flustered easily?  Do you believe in yourself to cope with the problem?
  2. The next time you have a serious disagreement do not get annoyed or behave boorishly. Make an attempt to see things from the point of view of the other person. Perhaps then you can respond more objectively and less emotionally and get others to appreciate your point of view.
  3. Read the very well known prayer of St. Francis of Assisi  http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/pray0027.htm

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Experiencing Peace

If you do not find peace in yourself, you will never find it anywhere else. Paula A. Bendry

Amidst the chaos and challenges of daily living there are opportunities galore for every individual to find a silent space within himself/ herself. The difficulty tho is that often this space is crammed with worries, fears, anxieties and confusion and squeezing in space for peace is exceptionally tough. When the stress and the struggles become overwhelming the craving for peace keeps growing and we are tempted to search for it in the pleasures of the world.  It could be in the form of  dance, music, movies, parties or it could be in the arms of the vices of the world like smoking, drinking, philandering  or in sadistic pleasures like ragging, terrorizing or brutalizing people. Ironically the peace we seek continues to elude us like the butterfly that can’t be caught if we keep chasing it.

Strange as it may sound, peace is calmness within you and no amount of loud music, pulsating sporting victories or extraordinary success can embrace you in its bosom as peace will. To experience peace one needs to give up; give up craving, give up passions, give up power and give up anxiety. In the real world we live in we are constantly being pushed by competition, egged on to aim for the number one spot and expected to be outstanding every single time you in the spotlight. The pressure of expectations, the comparison with peers and the lure of material success are a potent mix that intoxicates even the most rational being to believe that life is a rat race. Every waking hour is then spent chasing success and every moment of sleep generates a new dream of wealth, recognition and achievement. There is  no time to find that little space for peace.

If we look around we can see the beautiful smile on the faces of the little children, the innocence that transfigures their happiness into tranquility for us who watch them and the blissful peace on their face when they are asleep and we wonder if we will ever enjoy such harmony and ecstasy. If we ponder over the matter it will dawn on us that the children are sans any worries, tensions or pressure to succeed. They have nothing to ponder over nor anything to crave for. Peace is what we are born with and till logic and reason takes over and pushes that innocence into the background life will always be peaceful. The challenge then is to regain that peace by looking inside us for it has been only suppressed by the worldly demands and self centered interests. What is hidden within us can never be found anywhere else but inside us.

Notice how hard it is for us to suppress our thoughts and focus on nothingness. Experience the tranquility that accompanies us when we are in a meditative state. Peace is shedding our inhibitions and anxieties, embracing life with equanimity and being ecstatic for the joys of LIFE. All these you find within you and if you can’t then you can be sure you will be searching for it in vain.

Remember: “Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it”

Try these:

  1. Go for a week long course on meditation. The practice it as often as you can. Alternatively read up on meditation and attempt it on your own. The key is to reduce distraction in any form and to focus on nothingness. You experience peace when there is no conflict within you in mind body and spirit.
  2. When you can, give of yourself. This means that you have to spare your time and personally participate in any form of social activity preferably for the poor, the underprivileged, the disadvantaged etc. Initially you will experience feelings of sympathy, guilt, anger at the injustice and then you will realize that there is joy in sharing when you give of yourself. Give freely and in return take home peace in abundance.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

God’s Test

God tests His real friends more severely than the lukewarm ones. Katheryn Hulme

More often than not, we remember God when we are in trouble and our constant plea then is Oh God Why did this happen? Troubles make us realize how helpless we are, how dependent we are on God and humbles us into accepting his will. Very often, we are left perplexed when we see bad tings happening to God fearing, warm and loving people. Take the case of innocent victims of terrorist attacks, accidents, heart attacks or someone suddenly diagnosed with cancer or Alzheimer’s or numerous youngsters resorting to suicide; our hearts go out to them but the mouth painfully articulates the real feeling in our heart – Oh Go Why them?

Look at it differently. The more prestigious academic institutions have more rigorous entrance tests and selection criteria, which can be matched by just the top students. Similarly, while we all love our creator, many of us being overtly religious and ritualistic, some of us fully devoted to the almighty service, God has his own plans for each one of us. He tests us in so many ways, through challenges of inflicting pain on us or our loved ones, through the freedom of choice given to us to choose to turn away from temptation or to fall prey to it and by withholding from us many of things we crave for. For those being tested, it is not just our faith that is being put to test but also our ability to endure, and our capacity to love him even when the road ahead seems endless and pave with thorns.

It is but human to also feel jealous, that those whom we see with our jaundiced eyes as weak in faith, having fragile morals, leading carefree lives and being showered with blessings denied to us. We are tempted to questions God’s wisdom; wonder about his impartial ways and get a feeling of being under his foster care. We then let our hearts harden, our minds dulled and our actions leaden with the weight of both envy for the fortunate and grief for our own plight. If we only stopped to seek answers in his challenges rather than search for loopholes in the questions God asks of us; if we let our faith be unwavering and our love for him endless; if we accept his wisdom without question, and let our hearts answer it rather than our minds; we will see that God is putting you to the test because you have committed to him that you are his faithful, obedient and loyal follower. Ask any coach and he/ she will tell you that the toughest, most competitive and the mentally tough players are the ones who deliver when the chips are down, the ones whose presence uplifts the team and the one who strikes fear in the hearts of the opponents. You must be that player, hence you are being sought by God to stand up and be counted!

Remember: God allows us to experience the low points of life in order to teach us lessons we could not learn in any other way. The way we learn those lessons is not to deny the feelings but to find the meanings underlying them” Stanley Lindquist

Try these:

  1. Out line the worst experience of your life from age 7 -15 and from 15- to date. What was the feeling you got. Who was to blame or that experience? How did that experience impact your life? Did it make you more resilient or more cynical?
  2. If God were to give you a choice between the following pains which one would you choose and why? Death of a very close loved one? or You going blind?
  3. When in pain; physical or otherwise what would be a religious text you would turn to find comfort, hope and faith in God? It doesn’t matter which religion you belong to or which texts you use; just choose the words that will give you courage. Copy it and put it in your wallet.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our weekly Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Prayer

Prayer moves the hand that moves the world.
John Aikman Wallace

There is a higher order that is difficult to understand for us human beings. It is faith in the supreme that energizes us, gives us hope and fills our hearts with peace. Prayer is a medium to reach out to God, a channel for dialogue with God and an instrument that steady’s our journey on the pathway of life.

The difficulty with prayer is that often we are impatient for the answers. God answers us in many ways, alas we do not listen but look around for proof that he is with us. Our search for proof unfortunately is more in the realms of  finding tangible benefits for ourselves and occasionally accepting that sorrows and troubles are also Gods ways of make us stronger.

God always hears our prayers. However he may not answer it in the way we want to hear. You may get a response that is far more surprising and rewarding in the long-term, but it may look and sound like an unanswered prayer in the short-term. God runs a tight ship; he will have to be tough and so we may not get all that we seek but you can be sure he knows each of us intimately and ensure that we are given our due in course of time. Believe that the God never forsakes.

Remember :In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart.

Try these

  • Make your prayer spontaneous like a chat with a friend. Reduce the ritualistic and focus on a dialogue – share your troubles, confide your needs and express your thanks for the fruits of God ‘s love that you have received.
  • While there is no specific time for prayer, it would be wonderful idea to start your day and end your day with a prayer.
  • Explore formal prayers of other religions and you will discover that Love is central to all prayers as is faith in God and belief in his infinite love and mercy.

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