A couple of months ago, some friends visited and stayed with us for 2 nights. We had a great time but I was really tired the day after they left, and almost couldn’t wait to go to bed that night. As I checked my emails before heading off to take a bath, I noticed one from our friends. All it said was, “We came home and were both sick. Do you think it might have been the chicken?”
My first thought was, “We went way out of our way to host you and the only thing you have to say is this?!’ …..then I caught myself. This wasn’t the only thing that they said. There were many compliments exchanged during our time together, and they told us numerous times how much they enjoyed our company and the food, ect., but the ego always wants to be right, even at the expense of our happiness, peace of mind, harmonious relationships, and growth.
When I had the thought, “This is the first thing you say to me after all of the trouble I went to?!” my conscious mind wanted me to believe it, even though it wasn’t true. And if I had re-told this story to Jack or anyone else, it would have gained power and momentum. I would have begun to see these people as thoughtless, a little unkind, or at the very least, unconscious. And yet, that was exactly what I would have been (to myself) if I had believed the story that I told…. myself. I would have suffered, felt a little like a victim, and been upset, unconsciously ruining my own day.
After this happened, I could see that I had grown. In the past, I might have held onto that story, or said something to them, and missed the whole point of the experience. I don’t believe that anything happens by accident. I believe (although usually not in the moment when it is happening) that everything is for us; for our growth, increased happiness, inner peace and wisdom. Often times, right in the middle of a difficult situation, I will say (to myself), “This is for me” and I can feel myself open up. Every time that I do something in a better way, I try to notice this and acknowledge my progress with gratitude and self-love.
It is a really good practice to say (frequently), “This is for me”, right in the middle of the difficulty. It is a really good practice to look for what we are doing right.
“Someone said that living your life is like playing a violin solo in public and learning to play the instrument as you go along. This is a true saying. It describes the experience very well, but no one should worry about that. We are in this world for exactly that purpose…to learn. While you are learning you do not expect to produce a perfect work. When you produce a perfect work you are a master and no longer a student. On this plane we are all students, and what matters is that each year we shall find the quality of our workmanship definitely better, proving that we are a step nearer to mastership. People are sometimes depressed because their lives do not present a simple, logical harmonious unfoldment; because their histories seem to be full of inconsistencies, repetitions, dead ends, and yawning gaps. This however, is only to be expected during the learing period. It is only on the stage (and then only in a good play) that the action unfolds logically, evenly, tidily, compactly, to its conclusion. But then the actors have no free will, for it has all been rehearsed many times. Your life has not been rehearsed. It is an adventure, and a discovery, and a training, and it is only the final goal, or last state, and not your present state that matters.” from Emmet Fox, Find and Use Your Inner Power.