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Receive and Be Gentle

We are reminded by this Scripture to be aware how surrounded by love we are, as God’s inexhaustible supply of love is poured out overwhelmingly by the Holy Spirit into us. Each moment is an opportunity for us to respond to God’s love, yet sadly we fall short. Gratefully, Divine love meets us in our flawed, suffering condition and we draw strength and encouragement, knowing God is forever faithful, even when we are not.

Particularly if you struggle with receiving, (I can identify,) it can be our past conditioning has been to focus on the negative in ourselves and others. It is necessary to affirm our God-given value. Spiritual writer, Richard Rohr gives us examples of affirmations to repeat -

“I am unlovable I am infinitely loved

I don’t have enough I have everything I need

I am stupid I have the mind of Christ

I am worthless I am precious in God’s eyes, I am honored and God loves me

Repeat positive statements aloud, slowly and with intention and trust several times. Then rest silently in the awareness that you are already and forever, without any effort or achievement on your part, a Beloved child of God.” How life-changing these statements can be if we choose to be kinder and loving to ourselves, one moment at a time.

It is almost impossible to give from an empty place and vitally necessary to refuel constantly with hope and God’s grace. Spending quality time with the Lord in prayer, quiet and reading the Bible has benefits beyond our imaginings. I speak from personal experience, that being a caretaker requires ‘more’ self-care and most times putting ourselves last leads to an empty, burned out vessel. Wisdom from Maria Shriver – “Falling in love with yourself doesn’t make you foolish or selfish, it makes you indestructible,” reminds us we can be our own best friend.

Having hope means no matter how bleak, bad or uncertain the journey, God is always by our side. Every new day is a chance to be gentle with ourselves. Most of us are doing what we can, within our limits and weaknesses and often become easily frustrated and overwhelmed. Being down on ourselves, only takes us deeper into the chaos. Seemingly, it is healthier not to start our day with the broken pieces of yesterday. It is no surprise, I pray each day, “Lord, help me to be patient with myself and merciful to others, living in this moment, with Your help.”

How essential is our need for each other. When suffering is shared, the weight is divided; when joy is shared the delight is multiplied. Hope will carry us, with guidance and love each moment, we have only to ‘receive.’ Will you choose to be gentle with yourself and keep plugged into the Lord? Comments welcome.

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