OUR GREATEST FEAR
Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate,
but that we are powerful beyond measure.
I recently attended a wonderful retreat based on the theme of compassion. Throughout the week we were accompanied by this beautiful peacock with its vibrant colors of various shades of blues and greens. As I spent time reflecting on the grace of God’s unconditional love for all of creation, experiencing healing through meditations on self-compassion, and opening my heart to compassion for all of life, I kept gazing at this peacock and felt God had a message to share through this stunning creature.
But what could a peacock possibly have to do with compassion?
Compassion is the act of extending loving kindness. I find that experiencing compassion, both from God and the compassion I have for myself and others, leads to great healing of the broken places in life. When I allow myself to be embraced by the fullness of God’s love for me, I begin to understand that just being “me” is enough. And when I welcome all aspects of myself (those I’m proud of as well as the parts that try to remain hidden) and I bring them into the light of God’s grace, I am no longer divided and struggling with the need to hide who I truly am from God or others. I can become the person God created me to be. I can celebrate the “beauty” – in whatever shape or form that takes.
Just as God accepts and loves me, God created and loves all people. Extending unconditional love, grace and compassion to others invites them to experience healing and wholeness. There is no competition or selfish acts of “doing good” just to make me feel better about myself. Practicing loving kindness to others allows us to see the beauty that lies within them.
In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Colossians he writes, “As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience… Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” (Colossians 3:12, 14)
When we clothe ourselves with these things, then like the peacock, we too radiate the glory of God…
And of that we can be proud!