“The two hardest tests on the spiritual road are the patience to wait for the right moment and the courage not to be disappointed with what we encounter.” Paulo Coelho
How patient are you when things don’t go your way? Are you often disappointed about life or do you find some pleasure in each day?
Lately, it seems that dealing with the mundane in life has become unnecessarily difficult and somewhat bizarre. I spent an hour or more trying to discover why my phone would do nothing but “search” when it had worked fine the day before and the battery was charged. Finally I unplugged the battery to read the numbers on it, thinking that maybe I needed a new one, and when I reconnected it, it worked just fine.
Then there was a problem with the water filter. In order to have filtered water like reverse osmosis, I stack one water filtration dispenser on top of another so that the water from the top dispenser will drip through the second filter. In the last month, the top dispenser has toppled onto the floor twice when a friend of mine walked into the kitchen. At 6 foot 3 inches, he’s a big guy and his steps create a vibration, but he’s been walking into my kitchen frequently for months. Why is this happening now? The second time it happened, the filter shattered.
Lessons May Come From Negative Experiences
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.” Each moment of each day offers us the opportunity to learn. I’ve learned from experience that when a series of events, mundane or serious, occur I need to pay attention. I need to calm down, go with the flow, and take time to trust that the Universe is trying to tell me something.
In addition to going inside for spiritual guidance, I also look at astrology or numerology to see if any messages resonate. My number for this month is a 36/9 and part of the message is that any losses or endings will free me for the new cycle I am about to enter and that any losses I encounter are only those things I do not need.
Not Being Centered Creates Unnecessary Difficulty
When the phone incident occurred, I was already frustrated about a series of troublesome phone calls with my insurance company, and I wasn’t in a positive frame of mind. I was so disappointed that another problem had arisen that I lacked the patience to solve the problem easily by doing the most obvious thing, checking the battery connection. Instead, I assumed it was more complicated.
Remaining Positive Requires Courage
Paolo Coelho reminds us to have courage and not be disappointed when we encounter difficulties. We have to trust that there is value in these life experiences. When the negative experiences are more serious matters, the challenge to have courage is so much greater. My challenges are nothing compared to the challenge my friend who has cancer faces. She is nearing the end but insists on trying not to take drugs to “numb out.” That’s real courage!
Years ago when I had chronic fatigue syndrome, I had to change my life style in order to heal naturally. Having to go to bed early and be very strict about what I ate irritated friends and others close to me. The medical profession had not yet accepted this diagnosis as a real one and many people just thought I was being dramatic about my needs. Losing friends and not being respected made my life more difficult. It took courage for me to remain devoted to what I knew was best for me.
Loss May Lead Us To Something Better
In the case of the cracked filter, I was surprised by what happened, but I wasn’t too upset. Maybe the incident was telling me it was time to install a water filter in my water system. As it turned out, the friend whose vibration caused the filter to crash had an extra filter that can be easily installed in my house.
Learning “not to be disappointed by what we encounter” when we experience mundane disappointments prepares us to face the really difficult moments. Staying calm and going with the flow gives us the patience “to wait for the right moment.” We often see this in a relationship when we need to discuss a touchy subject with a partner or a manager at work. If we take the time to consider when and what to say and release our anger or frustration first, we are more likely to communicate in a way so that the other person will hear us.
To Trust Life, We Must Trust Ourselves
We can trust life when we learn to trust ourselves. We create our lives with our thoughts, emotions, and actions, and the more we learn about managing them in a spiritual and loving way, the more likely we are to create positive experiences. In addition to the patience and courage, Coelho suggests, developing a practice of gratitude helps to shift us away from expecting the worst of a situation we don’t like.
Focusing on Gratitude Is A Positive Practice
Gratitude reminds us of all the good in our lives. Even when it’s hard to see the good, it is important to hunt for it and look for a lesson in each experience. My experience with the phone reminded me that I need to focus on the simplicity of life and assume the solution to a problem is simple unless it truly does become more complex. I am thankful for that reminder.
The experience with the water filter offered a better alternative to my “slippery slope” solution and reminded me that when one thing stops working, it is often because there is something better in the future. When we are grateful for the good we have and truly believe that basically life is good, despite the challenges, we are more likely to find our spiritual path filled with light.
© 2014 Georganne Spruce ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5