Sermons by Rev. Bonnie
Spiritual GPS for Relationships
February 10, 2009
Hearts and flowers. Cupids and arrows. Chocolates and diamonds. Why, it must be February with Valentine’s Day approaching. It doesn’t take long, does it, for Christmas and holiday decorations to be replaced with the familiar red packaging associated with February 14? And, for many of us, it is a time to reflect on our love relationships—if we have one or if we don’t have one. If we want one or if we are glad we don’t have one. For some of us we smile as we think “Love is in the air”. For others of us, we think, “Love is in the air and it is polluted. I don’t feel it or have it, or know it, and boy does that suck”!
I’ve known both of those sentiments. There is no doubt which I prefer—to know, feel, and have love. There was a movie I recall from when I was growing up called “The Incredible Journey”. It was about two dogs and a cat who ended up hundreds of miles from home and were able to find their way back. They didn’t have a compass, they didn’t ask directions, they instinctively and innately found their way. I contend that we humans are capable of that as well, except for one thing—we get in our own way. Our egos keep us from remembering the instinct on how to get home. We know how to get home—it is in our DNA. We are created by love and love is our natural state. When we are home—we dwell in love. Call me a Wandering Jew—because I ended up lost in the desert of believing there wasn’t love in the universe for me for over 40 years. Heck—the Israelites got to the Promised Land in less time!
We know that the reason it took the Israelites forty years to find the Promised Land was so a generation of people who had known enslavement and victimization could die off to be replaced by a new generation who didn’t adhere to that limited thinking. The good news for us is that we can get to our Promised Land just about as easy as Dorothy was able to click her ruby red heels and get from Oz back to Kansas. And that’s what I will be addressing here—how to get home—how to return to love.
My experience on my journey home to love involved a number of wrong turns, dead ends, and moving violations. Oh how I wish I had had a spiritual GPS (a global positioning system) to help me find my way. And, again, the good news, we all do. The GPS is inherent in the metaphysical Law of Attraction—positive thoughts and attitudes draw positive energies from the universe. Call it the God Positioning System. As we align ourselves with Divine love, we increase our capacity and ability to better love ourselves and others. As we develop a stronger relationship with our Creator and ourselves, we can only develop stronger relationships with others.
How do we go about finding our way home with our spiritual GPS? I offer three steps for consideration:
Step 1) Stop in the name of love
Step 2) Make a wrong turn Your turn.
Step 3) Every relationship is an opportunity to return home.
1. Stop in the name of love.
You know that oft-told definition of insanity—doing the same thing and expecting different results? A variation we could say here is–are you traveling the same relationship road and expecting to arrive someplace new? Take a breath and stop. Stop any moaning and groaning. Stop any woulda coulda shoulda, how come, why me, if only. Stop any guilt, shame, or blame. Just stop. Take a breath. Stop trying to change your partner, your mother, your child, your boss, your co-worker, your friend. Stop trying to read minds or to second guess. Stop believing you are unlucky, unworthy, unlovable, not smart enough or good enough, rich enough, pretty enough, skinny enough, or enough enough. Just stop. In the name of love. Stop before you break Your heart. Hit the mental pause button. Give the mental chatter a break. That is the ego trying to take and keep control.
Let’s stop in the name of love and take a moment to look at how we are relating to the people in our life and how we are experiencing life. Take a moment right now. When you think of relationship who comes to mind? As we look at our family, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, and even strangers or those we perceive as our enemies—let’s ask ourselves—“Am I looking through eyes that see only love?” “Am I experiencing life in a way that I know love is present and that my highest good is unfolding?” The person that you have brought to mind—how do you answer those questions? “Am I looking through eyes that see only love?” “Am I experiencing life in a way that I know love is present and that my highest good is unfolding?” Yes means love is in charge; no means our egos are in control. Love always is and love always works. Love triumphs over all other thoughts. As we look at how we perceive ourselves and others, we have the opportunity to realign ourselves in love.
And let’s stop in the name of love to listen. There is an old Chinese proverb that says: “We have two ears and two eyes, but one tongue, in order that we may see and hear twice as much as we speak.” If our relationships are not where or what we would wish them to be, listen for that inner voice of love. Know that love and resentment cannot occupy the same space at the same time. Nor can love and fear or love and lack. Develop a meditation practice–a time to hear from Spirit instead of trying to order Spirit around. Listen for ways you can bring love to any past or current wounds. Listen for the internal GPS that will guide your heart to know and be love. Stop in the name of love.
2. Make a wrong turn Your turn.
As we journey towards home—towards love—there may be times when we think we have made a wrong turn. “I didn’t expect it to turn out like this”. “He, she, it, they are not what/who I thought they would be” “Nothing ever goes my way”. “Nothing ever turns out right”. Any of these sound familiar? The thing I’ve learned about divine GPS—there are no wrong turns. God knows exactly where She is leading us and why. God knows exactly the direction we are to travel in and the people we are to meet along the way. God knows why we have been assigned to our family of origin. What may seem like a wrong turn to us, is truly not. I can recall a few times when I have been driving in unfamiliar places and made what I thought was a wrong turn. And—I was rewarded with a beautiful waterfall I hadn’t expected, a great country store where I found some delightful treasures, and met some wonderful people who filled my day with love and joy. Our task is to find the lesson and blessing from these people and experiences, learn and move on. Living in regret or anger, blame or shame is not living in the present. The present is all we have. The now. This moment. As we allow any sense of wrong-turness to flow through us and be released, we open ourselves up to forgiveness and healing, joy and wonder, and an even greater capacity to love. It’s one of those opportunities to change a paradigm of regret and frustration into wisdom and ease.
3. Every relationship is an opportunity to return home.
In the book Daily Meditations for Practicing The Course by Karen Casey, in speaking of relationships, she writes:
“We are in relationship with many people. Each relationship foretells the degree of our connection with God. We may feel more comfortable in one relationship than another; however, if we are not peaceful in one of them, we are not truly peaceful in any, even those that seem fun and easy.”
“But just as the weakness of one relationship signifies the weakness of all of them, wholly mending just one also heals them all, in an instant. The Course (Course in Miracles) teaches that there is only one relationship. This relationship has simply taken many forms.”
Divine guidance is always available. Plug the GPS into your heart and get connected with all of the direction you will ever need. The catch is—we have to plug it in. It reminds me of the saying, “Lying in bed and shouting ‘Oh God’ does not constitute going to church.” Staying in our heads and in our egos and thinking that we “ought to” plug in—does not constitute actually doing it. As we return to love, as we find our divine home within, what before looked like a road closed sign, is replaced with a bridge to our self, each other, and to God.
So, Step 1: Stop in the name of love.
Step 2: Make a wrong turn Your turn.
Step 3: Every relationship is an opportunity to return home.
Before I close, I want to update you all on an opportunity for expanded love that has manifested in my life. Last time I spoke here, I mentioned how I had lost my beloved cat right before Thanksgiving. I wanted another four-legged presence in my house. My partner is, unfortunately, allergic to cats. That limited my options. I had never seen myself having a dog in my life. I believed them to be needy, loud, unable to use kitty litter, and some even slobbered (reminds me of some of my past girlfriends!). Perhaps I was speciest favoring cats over dogs. And now with Shayna gone, I was being presented with an opportunity to expand my notion of love. I have now had my 11 week old puppy—Lilli—in my life for nine days. My heart has expanded. So has my use of paper towels to clean up little puppy accidents! And as I thought about a return to love, I came up with three lessons that Lilli has already offered me. They are:
1) Learn from past mistakes and know that all is divinely forgiven.
2) Always be excited to give and receive love.
3) Joy and gratitude are contagious.
May these puppy lessons and the God Positioning System provide you with the blueprint for your own incredible journey. Let it be so. And so it is.
© 2019 Bonnie J. Berger. All rights reserved.