Are You Listening?
Rev. Michael Carter
Listen to the messages of Life. This is what we are called to do: listen and learn to love. We listen by being in the present moment so we can all pay attention a bit more to the messages we are receiving. I know I can. Are you listening to your life? Are you listening to the subtle messages contained in your situation and relationships right now? In which areas of your life are you having difficulty? Do you understand what your difficulties are saying to you and about you? If you are talking back to yourself and the relationships and situations in your life, are you aggressive or gentle? Are you offensive or defensive?
Is your life telling you that it will always be this way? Or do you hear that it is time to let go and move on (or be dragged)? In what areas of your life do you lack energy or a scarcity of resources? Are you attempting to put old wine into new wine skins? If so, it won’t work. Perhaps your life is showing you that you are struggling with all the wrong things for all the wrong reasons. Is your life peaceful? Fulfilling? Rewarding? Is it strained or draining to you?
The point here is that your life, our lives, are talking to you and to us. Are we listening? Sometimes we listen to our lives and pay very close attention to what life is trying to tell us, but more often than not we are afraid to hear what our lives are saying to us, and more importantly, about us. Then there are times when we do not know how to listen to what we hear. We do not know how to do what we know we must to change the dialogue in our lives. I find that to be still and quiet helps immensely. When I become quieted (not simply quite) I begin to see things that come across my inner landscape that I was not aware of. By “quieted” I mean quiet on the inside.
When the conditions of life are not peaceful and abundant; when the relationships in your life are not harmonious and fulfilling; when you do not feel good about yourself, what you are doing, and where you are headed, it can become quite obvious to others but not to yourself, that you are not being a good listener. Until today, you may not have taken the time to listen to your life. You may be avoiding what your life is saying about the adjustments and improvements you need to make. Just for today, make it a point to sit down and listen to your life. Listen to every experience, situation, and condition in your life and be willing to respond as a good listener would.
To Come Home To Yourself
May all that is unforgiven in you be released.
May your fears yield their deepest tranquilities.
May all that is unlived in you blossom into a future graced with love
—John O’Donohue (To Bless the Space Between Us)