Day 257 - All or Nothing...
God, has that phrase kicked my ass over the years. Seems like the whole of my life has been spent in this all or nothing bind with booze, men, love, sex, friendship, money. I was like a pendulum swinging to and fro without any real ability to alter the momentum in another direction or to ever hover around the middle.
So it is kind of ironic that my entire life changed when I was faced with this question:
Is God everything or is God nothing?
And thus began my spiritual journey. Wait, that sounds far too lofty, it was more like a spiritual drag...me being dragged into God’s house and then set free. Seemingly only to need to ask me the above question and in so doing, ruin everything.
As much as I wanted to believe that God was nothing, I couldn’t miss all the small and large miracles that were happening in my life. I was not drinking and that was definitely evidence of supreme life if you ever saw me drink...It all started there and has grown and changed and given me a life that is really worth living today.
I have had harder terms with other areas. The all or nothing principle doesn’t really work in relationships. No one, myself included, likes to be given ultimatums or pushed to a point of having to fully commit or be done. Especially from the start. But that was how I did them, you had to be all in with me from the word go or I was out. Pretty childish but true. I think anyone who has read the blog knows that by now. It is a long road with a lot of relational debris.
But what is interesting about the journey is this, I just needed to have this one ultimatum and once I made this one choice, everything else got more space. Everything else got freed from the inevitable swinging back and forth and to and fro. Once I decided that God was everything, it all changed. And it continues to change. But this idea that a spiritual life lived on principles was the foundation for my life, changed how I lived, the way that I lived and ultimately how I loved. This all or nothing principle gave me a firm bedrock upon which to build a life.
Today it is funny to me that I ever had a hard time with this one. It is funny and not that hard. But to me, I really, literally, almost picked death over life because I didn’t want God or spirit or Buddha or whatever. That seemed like it was asking too much of me and I spent way longer on that proverbial fence than anyone should.
As difficult as the decision was to make, it has been way harder to live a life based on spirit. I fail every day. But I succeed every day also. I can see progress in minute decisions, thoughts, feelings, actions. I can see the presence and evidence of the life committed to spiritual principles in everything I do now. And I can also see all the things I do, think, feel, act that leaves evidence to show that I have abandoned those principles once again.
What I have come to learn is that the all or nothing question was in fact the easy question. It was just the first question in a line of coming questions that would never, ever be that easy again. So why continue? Why keep it up? Why work so hard to continue to live by spiritual principles if the road is long and the work arduous? Because it is the only way that I feel like I can give back what was given to me. I do it for service and the by product of that service is living happy, joyous and free a great deal of the time.
I have found that God (or spirit or whatever you want to call it) really doesn’t make too hard of terms if you seek. You aren’t responsible for find, just seek. Continue to seek and learn and give and see. Apply the principles in all of your affairs. The pain will come but so will the joy and beauty and love. And the principles will give you a path through the rough patches and provide healing light when all seems dark.
I just re-read all that I just typed out...and I marvel at who I have become. And that is all simply because I made a decision to let God (or spirit or whatever) be everything.