By Vince DiPasquale
Embrace Silence: Perhaps one of the greatest rewards of meditation and prayer is the sense of belonging that comes to us. Bill W.
August is a month dedicated to the wonderful word, retreat. People have often called it the dog days of summer. It’s a time to take a break from the busy, crazy activities of life, stand still and learn to enjoy the quiet and solitude. Many of the great teachers have always taken time to be quiet and learn to appreciate the gifts and creations of life.
In our 12-step program we are taught some very special words that invite us to experience the wonders and beauty of life. Let go and let God, gratitude, prayer, meditation, openness, spiritual awakening, service, acceptance, sharing. I consider these words to be the secret to inner peace and serenity.
Let go and let God allows us to decrease tension, stress, and anxiety. It helps us to realize that we are not in charge. Once we allow ourselves to release control, we become free to experience the journey of life. Each experience is allowing us to discover the lesson our Higher Power is trying to teach us. When you allow yourself to let go you can connect to the God experience within. Each one of us as God’s creation is the channel through which the Higher Power speaks to us. Be quiet and listen.
Gratitude is our way of saying thank you for the experiences we have been given. If we live in gratitude each situation will open a new door for us in our life’s journey. Each day as we awaken say a prayer of gratitude for the gift of life.
Prayer is our life source, our way of sharing with our Creator our feelings. The Higher Power and our Guardian Angels are always there to be our guides. All we must do is ask for their help and guidance. I truly believe they walk with us throughout our journey. The 5th step is to share our true feelings with God, the greater healer and teacher. Our lives should be constant prayer. At all times let’s share our joys, sorrows, and the realities of life with our Higher Power. Prayer is the foundation of faith.
Meditation is God’s way of teaching the value of being quiet. When we are in stillness, we can hear the teachings and messages of life. We live in world of noise, activity, gadgets, games, and business. These are always what we run from in life. If we stay busy, we don’t hear the lessons of life. Take time to be quiet. Try each day to be open to the messages God gives us every moment of life. Many of us think if we are not doing something we are wasting time. Quiet and solitude are the foundations of settlement and inner peace. When we are quiet, we can hear God’s messages. Meditation is the gift of listening and learning.
Spiritual awakening is the core of our spirituality. The word spiritual comes from Latin and Greek and means to be open to discover the potential and beauty in all of us. Our purpose on this earth is to be on a constant journey of self-awakening and discovery. We are all spiritual creatures. Each day be open to the lessons we are learning in life. Every one of us is a book. Each day we add a new chapter in our life’s journal. Let’s all try to look at life through positive eyes. Each awakening allows us to grow a little bit more. Remember we should always be moving forward on our journey – progress, not perfection.
Service and sharing allows us to continue our progress of growth. We are not islands. If we take the time to share the book of life with others, we will receive back a hundredfold. To give is to receive. We are part of a world community. There is so much to learn. Diversity is the key to life. In service we share our experiences, strength, and hope. Don’t isolate or hide your gifts. The more we share with others the more positive and rewarding our lives will become. Let’s hope and pray every day to be examples to others by carrying the message of life and recovery and by the way we live our lives. Live life to the fullest and the energy from us will touch others. Service also teaches the gift of humility and connects us to all of God’s creatures.
Finally, we come to the most beautiful word on earth – acceptance. When we can accept the reality of who we are we will be able to accept others. This gift allows us to look upon each of God’s creations with unconditional love, it allows us to be totally alive and celebrate each moment.
During this peaceful month of August when the world quiets down, take time to reflect, be quiet and listen to all the messages of life with gratitude and openness. Remember it’s a gift to be able to experience our aloneness. To be in solitude is to be in touch with the secret of life, inner peace.
May God bless all of us as we walk our life’s journey’s.