Who am I?
I find this to be a very intriguing question; this search for the “True Self” as it is often called. I could think of a quite a few words to describe myself, such as: wife, mother, daughter, friend, patient, peacemaker, etc. One word I typically wouldn’t use, nor do I think others wold use, is “athlete.” For some reason, that word just doesn’t fit even though in truth, I’m a runner. I enjoy running for exercise and am currently training for my second marathon. But since I’m not trying to win any races, I just don’t see myself as an athlete. (Which by the way, “slow and steady wins the race” isn’t true.) So I do some running but that’s about the extent of my athleticism. One thing
I know should go hand in hand with running is stretching and I’m terribly guilty of not doing that!
So what does this have to do with discovering my True Self?
Well, I find that running without stretching causes me to be very tight and inflexible. When I do take the time to stretch and practice yoga, my body opens up and creates space for me to move freely. This is a metaphor for my spiritual life. Running without stretching is like living without meditation. I can give and give of myself; loving others, ministering to those in need, engaging in holy listening. But if I haven’t taken the time for meditation, then like the physical running, my spirit begins to tighten and I’m in danger of serious injury to my soul.
I believe that within each of us is a holy place where we are at one with the Divine and it is there that we discover our True Self as we are created to be. This sacred space holds the truth of Love and Grace that gives meaning and purpose to our life. How do we discover and dwell in this place? We must “stretch open” our soul. We must take time for prayer, meditation, and contemplation so we can quiet the distractions of life and loosen all the muscles that contract around this holy of holies blocking our entrance.
So today I will begin a more diligent discipline of stretching. Stretching my body to open to the wonders of the world and stretching my soul to open to the wonders of the Divine within.
How do you open yourself?