Smiley Face Stuart Miles

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles,/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

My friend Bobbie introduced me to a wonderful new Facebook page this afternoon, and I decided to write about this quote from that page:

” Waiting for someone else to make you happy is the surest way to be sad.”

Accessed on 11/24/13 at https://www.facebook.com/buddhistbootcamp

Unfortunately, I have spent too many minutes, days, and years in the past waiting for someone else  or something else to make me happy. And this quote is right—-I got sadder and sadder while I waited. Now I know the decision to be happy is my own; no one else can change my attitude except myself. When I am able to “change it” in a positive direction I am much happier.

Just as other people can’t make me happy, getting some material thing I wanted or accomplishing something I wanted to accomplish can’t make me happy either.  When I depend on someone or something outside of myself  to make me happy, I am, essentially, giving away all my power to a constant state of “wanting;” there is never enough to make the wanting go away. That feeling of being happy, of “having enough” or of “being full or whole” has to originate within myself by my act of consenting to receive God’s love.

In addition, my state of happiness needs to be based on my own  self-worth and self-validation. For me,  that means accepting I am a valid human being because God made me that way and because God loves me. I don’t have to earn that love or to buy my self-worth with “good deeds” or accomplishments. I don’t have to get it from other people. Actually, I can’t get it from other people. It is a gift from God, and to fail to love myself and to realize my own “validity,” just as I am, means I am failing to totally accept God’s gift of love and grace. I have learned seeing myself as unworthy of God’s love is a form of false-pride; it is thinking I am unique enough to be beyond God’s love and grace.

I don’t know if any of this is making any sense. I am reminded of a conversation I had with my rector this morning. He was talking about “being saved” by God’s grace. I interrupted him to ask him, “Saved from what?” My question was prompted by the fact that many years ago my step-father asked me what Christians meant by the term “saved?” Specifically, he asked me, “Saved from what?” I didn’t know how to answer him, but today I have a better idea because I know I am saved from myself and my own self-will  by God’s grace.

My rector answered my question about the meaning of being saved from what by saying, “From being separate  from God.” Earlier in the same lesson, he had said sin was, in fact,  being separate from God. His comments made sense. Somehow,  the phrase “being separate from God” makes a lot more sense to me than the word “sin” with all its traditional connotations of evil and damnation.

I doubt my step-father would have been able to understand what is meant by being separate from God. In my own spiritual journey,  I have come to love and value being surrounded by, immersed in, and joined with the love of God. Without it, I would still  be trying to find other people, places, or things to make me happy when all along the source of true happiness, God and God’s love,  have been within me just waiting for me to acknowledge, accept,  and consent to our union. And,  if that is being saved, than I can truly say I am grateful for being saved.

Please comment and share your thoughts about today’s topic. May God bless and keep you.

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