I tried a new Spiritual discipline tonight completely and utterly by chance. Prior to that, I had walked out of my current Sunday evening study and felt heart heavy.
My goal attending this particular evening class is to use it as practice for speaking up. I have never felt brave enough to speak my thoughts in these types of mixed settings. The vibe in this class though is very different from the ones that I have been deliberately choosing to change my image of God. Most classes I have been in of late, have been swathed in spiritual oneness, and compassion and have been healing my religious wounds by leaps and bounds. I have never had one snarky comment made towards me.
Well, that occurred tonight. The trick about speaking up is that your words can come back at you in positive or negative ways. I could continue to remain passive and just listen but I really want to grow through this, yet growing requires uncomfortableness.
And I am growing RIGHT NOW.
In contrast to Sunday nights class, I attend a class at our Spiritual Formation Center on Sunday mornings and I felt at home from the first visit on. I don't ever want to leave. After months of speaking up, I was called out for being a "Spiritual Pilgrim." These people speak my language and are having the same aha's I have been having. When I hear people express the very same thoughts that I have had, it is so affirming. It is exactly the opposite of what I felt leaving my class Sunday night.
We ended early, I ran into the bathroom and one of my favorite spiritual teachers happened to be in the stall next to mine. She invited myself and the other bathroom inhabitant to participate in Taize.
Hmmm. My stomach turned slightly. This is brand new and I had never experienced it. Uncomfortable. I asked how long it would take. Twenty minutes, which would have me leaving at the same time as the study normally did.
I must GO FOR IT.
On this night with my heavy heart, I came into our conference room whose floor is a labyrinth and it was dimly lit with candles. This meditative walk is an ancient practice used by many different faiths for centering, contemplation and prayer. One walks slowly on the path while quieting the mind and focusing on a spiritual question or a prayer and stops in the center to sit, kneel or pray and then walk out the path once again.
This is exactly where I needed to be and the experience I needed to have to affirm God's presence in my life.
It was perfect divine timing in the ladies' room.