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I read a story this morning that made me weep, put into perspective any tribulation I have gone through, reinforced the disguised gifts of suffering, and emphasized the power of compassion.
“In his book Through the Valley of the Kwai, Scottish officer Ernest Gordon wrote of his years as a prisoner of war during World War II. The 6’2″ man suffered from malaria, diphtheria, typhoid, beriberi, dysentery, and jungle ulcers, and the hard labor and scarcity of food quickly plunged his weight to less than 100 pounds. The squalor of the prison hospital prompted a desperate Ernest to request to be moved to a cleaner place–the morgue. Lying in the dirt of the death house, he waited to die. But every day, a fellow prisoner came to wash his wounds and encourage him to eat a part of his own rations. As the quiet and unassuming Dusty Miller nursed Ernest back to health, he talked with the agnostic Scotsman of his own strong faith in God and showed him that even in the midst of suffering there is hope.”
- What is your POW camp?
- Where are you imprisoned in your life?
- What are your tribulations?
- What are you up against in your life? illness? addiction? anger? difficult childhood memories? shame? depression? loss? guilt? grief? fear? anxiety? dissatisfaction?
Do you have a Dusty Miller in your life to lovingly tend to your wounds and nurture you back to health and vibrant life? It seems as though a compassionate presence is lacking in a lot of people’s lives and can lead to hopelessness, despair, and giving up. There is a solution! Seek first the kingdom of God and right relationship to God, and all these things shall be yours as well (Matthew 6:33). The kingdom of God is not a place, but a level of expanded consciousness, and an uplifted, elevated space of the awareness of the presence of the Spirit of God within your own heart. Seek the kingdom of God and you will have access to all the fruits of the Spirit: love, peace, joy, kindness, goodness, patience, gentleness, faith, and self-control. Trust that all the gifts are present in potentiality within you. “But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance” (Romans 8:25). The good news is you do not have to sit around hoping, because you can KNOW God right here and right now. You can experience the invisible in the present visible world. Faith is assurance or substance of things hoped for, the conviction or evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1). Your attention to the unseen helps to bring it into manifestation.
Have you ever experienced compassionate love in a time of suffering? Compassion is love infused with the spirit of God. If you haven’t received compassion, you can give it to yourself! In the article, Chemicals of Care: How Self-Compassion Manifests in Bodies, giving yourself compassion has the same effect neurochemically as receiving it from someone else (see http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kristin-neff/self-compassion_b_884665.html). I tried giving myself the self-compassion, as described in the article, and it was powerful! I was enfolded in a warm glow that felt like a blanket of divine love.
There is nowhere where the Spirit of God is not located (I love the positivity of a double negative!). If you aren’t getting what you need, give it to yourself with the knowledge that the invisible Spirit, the unseen Power of God is right where you are. If you have faith, as defined above, you will be comforted. The Holy Spirit is the Comforter. You can experience the powerful presence of the Spirit of God now, and be enveloped and enfolded in a blanket of warm, comforting divine love. Treating others as you want to be treated INCLUDES treating yourself as you want to be treated! You don’t need to have a partner, a spouse, or a compassionate Dusty Miller in your life, because you already have the invisible Unseen Spirit, the ultimate Spouse, the Divine Lover who gives unconditional Love and deep, healing compassion. Try it now: with intention, begin to speak the loving words you long to hear, and stroke your skin the way you yearn to be touched. The brain does not know the difference between you, Dusty Miller, a cherished husband wife or partner, or the Divine Spouse. Oxytocin is released in the brain and you