“The intensity of the pain depends on the degree of resistance to the present moment.” ~Eckhart Tolle
I have a good friend who has suggested I read Tolle’s work. Maybe I will soon. What I know about Tolle is that he, like many others, is big on the present moment. Being present in the good and bad of the moment. Being present in the pain and opportunity of the moment. Being present is something that I have not done a good job of the last few months and certainly have struggled with in the last few weeks and days. I am struggling to find the good in my present situation because what I want is out of my reach. I am struggling to lay down what I want for what I have at the moment.
I read the Tolle quote this morning and then read a post from another friend. Alice is the mother of Tato. Tato had a skiing accident and suffered potential paralysis. I read today that he just passed his driving test and is able to use his feet for the gas and brake and will not have to rely on hand controls. He drove from Austin to East Texas. This is a kid who many thought would never walk again.
Alice’s post was about Tato wanting to watch old home movies and it reminded Alice of all the plans she made and the family made for what they thought their future would look like. Grow up in a good home, go to college, get a good job, raise a family. The regular stuff for many people. Then, BAM! A freak accident. A complete change to live as they knew it. An ever increasing trust and faith. Today, she posted this verse from Proverbs 16:9:
In their hearts humans plan their course,
but the Lord establishes their steps.
I had plans for my life and they looked nothing like what my life is today. I planned my course and along the way I have had several BAMS! My faith has grown. My hope has grown. I do not know what the future looks like and I am hesitant to lay out plans. I cry out to the Lord, to YHWH, to open my eyes and show me the steps he is establishing. Of course, my faith is weak and my hope wavers and I want to see all the steps, all of them until I am dead, but that isn’t they way God works.
One day at a time. All I have is the present moment.
Oh Lord, Jehovah-Jireh, all I have is today. You hold the keys to tomorrow. Show me the steps I should take today. Give me wisdom to know what you want me to do and where you want to lead me. This is my prayer.
MY LORD GOD, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
• Thomas Merton, “Thoughts in Solitude”
“I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of The LORD (YHWH) in the land of the living. Wait for The LORD (YHWH); be strong and take heart and wait for The LORD (YHWH). – Psalms 27:13-14
Grace and peace.