Welcome to Today
It’s quite beautiful, am I right? Take a moment to look around you. If you are outside, close your eyes and quench yourself with the thoughts and feelings associated of being exactly who you are, right now, in this moment. Let all the happenings around you just be as you find yourself centered amongst them: breathe in and smile.
I want to share with you some of the thoughts that I was kicking around in my head for the past few days and ask that you join me on this journey. Breathe deep and slow yourself down. We are in no rush today. Take this short little break and just be ourselves for a moment. Ah, there we are. Bring about those thoughts of joy, wonder, and happiness as we build up for today’s discussion.
Let’s reflect on ourselves as a part of nature. You, me, and the medium that binds us together are bound in this intertwined web of existence and our entanglement within it illuminates our existence as a whole. When we walk down the street, it’s not hard to see that pain, loss, and suffering are worn on the faces of the strangers, or maybe not so strange, people we meet. We can see it in the way they walk, their body posture, their tone, and even in their essence. These feelings are not foreign to one person who walks this Earth.
But when I reflect on the suffering, I challenge myself to see its humanness. As we walk our path to understand our place in all of this life, we are met with that “bump” that shifts the ground we plant ourselves upon. Life is so wonderful to us that most of the time, these “bump” spontaneously grace us with their presence. Just when we get comfortable walking along our paths, ploop, here comes exactly what we don’t want to see. I don’t think that I have to name these happenings for you, in fact, I bet that you’re either just getting over, going through, or preparing to go through something right now. “Thomas, why are you reminding me of this stuff? I have no issue when my problems just slap me in the face every time they want to say hello!” I promise you I’m not getting some twisted type of clergy high for reminding you of your sins and shortcomings.
I bring these up to remind you of your resilience and your past record of overcoming everything else that life has thrown at you. As we mature into adulthood and learn that our expectations don’t necessarily align with the way the world really operates, we come to realize that life is not fair at times. When our problems flood our thoughts, we focus so much power on their essence that we forget to do what I feel is one of the most important aspects of recovering: Recognizing our self-worth.
Brothers and sisters of the Temple, recognize that you are good enough and that you have persevered through life’s toughest challenges and you are still here. Breathe in….breathe out. When we allow ourselves to be consumed by our problems we often shrink ourselves down and feel that we have lost our battles. I encourage you to turn around and remind yourself of the “bumps” that you have already climbed and use that to propel yourself forward. Rely on those personal strengths that shape and mold you and reach out to people who genuinely love you.
The billions upon billions of processes of life may sometimes have the advantage of directing the current of our existence, but the nature of our relationship with others is something that can overpower anything. And that power exists reciprocally, too.
We truly have the power to change lives by influencing and building other’s up with just our presence. Remember, A Jedi may walk his own path but they are never truly alone. Let us stand together to face anything that life will presents us with courage and compassion and be the reason somebody believes that everything will be alright.