Sometimes I see my illness as weakness, something to be overcome or something that holds me back, keeps from doing God’s work. I couldn’t be farther from the truth. On p. 29 of Forgiving Others, Forgiving Me a passage hit me : ” …”sometimes I missed the chance to let God’s power shine through my weakness and inability. God tells us that if we want to be first in his kingdom , we have to become last on this earth”. What do you think that means?
Rumi, the great Sufi poet writes in “Ladder to Heaven” …The spiritual way ruins the body and having ruined it, restores it to prosperity, Ruins the house for the sake of the golden treasure, and with that same treasure builds it better than before,…” Have you had that experience?
The First Two Noble Truths of Buddha address suffering describing it as a part of life that must be accepted, but not clinged to, that trying to control it often leads to greater pain. I found what looks to be a good book on the subject: How to be Sick by Toni Bernard (http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/04/how-to-be-sick–toni-bernhard) There is an interesting article there about it.
I would love to read your thoughts about any of these questions and don’t forget we’ll meet again on Sat. Nov. 2nd!
I love Richard Rhor. He is a Catholic Franciscan monk who is very open to other religions, but focused on Jesus. His insights especially into spiritual growth are immense. What do you think of this premise? I agree, but wish sometimes it didn’t have to be so hard. What do you think?
What are the lies/fears we tell ourselves that hold us back? For me, it is the fear of ill health. Renee Fisher in her book on p. 23 says, ” We don’t have to cower in a spirit of fear. Instead, we can learn through the power of the Holy Spirit to discipline our minds and accept God’s love. That love is stronger than any situation we find ourselves in. Knowing this we can throw off the lies that kept us back!
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off
everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.
And let us run with perseverance the race marked our for us,
fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith (Hebrews 12: 1-2)
What do you think? Do you think our fears hold us back. Can the Holy Spirit help us learn to accept God’s love?
We are beginning a book study of the book Forgiving-Others-Me by Renee Fisher. It can ordered from Amazon in paperback or Kindle/ebook. http://www.amazon.com/Forgiving-Others-Me-ebook/dp/B00E3G8MKC/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1380997832&sr=1-1&keywords=forgiving+others+forgiving+me. We can post comments here as we read. We will meet still on the First Sat. of each month at 11am to discuss but in between can discuss here. I will post questions or anyone can.
Today we discussed how our hardships have made us harder to get along with or sometimes more empathetic. We also discussed how hard it is to forgive ourselves. Our images of God have changed as we have changed too. Feel free to leave your comments below.