Love is not something you do; love is something you are. It is your True Self. Love is where you came from and love is where you’re going. It’s not something you can buy. It’s not something you can attain. It’s the presence of God within you, called the Holy Spirit or what some theologians name, uncreated grace. -Richard Rohr
Three times in the last four days I have been engaged in an interior battle. Each incident began with something or someone that triggered an angry emotional response in me and in each case, that anger was then confronted with a second inner voice which said, “what are you doing?” “why are you allowing this reaction to take such a hold on you?” But, just because my spirit pushed back against an egoic reaction did not mean the reaction immediately stopped.
How many times have you had a quiet battle within your own mind/heart? These tug-of-wars between our ego and our soul sometimes evaporate as quickly as they arise, and other times that can linger and even drain us emotionally. Sunday I experienced one of these back-and-forth moments which lasted almost an hour! I became so upset by something and then a heard that small voice in me saying, “why are you even going there-let it go…” and for a moment I felt neutral again, but only for a moment, before my ego kicked up some more dirt and I was angry again. The irony was that while I felt defeated on one level for even having such a reactionary response, I recognized that at least I even have the reflective capacity to evaluate my reactions at all! What a gift to have learned how to pause and ask myself- why are you feeling this way, and remember, I don’t have to stay in that reactionary place in myself.
A friend recently reminded me that spiritual enlightenment or salvation is not about silencing our emotions, but allowing ourselves to experience them, recognize and process them for what they are… and then let them go. That is precisely what Christ Jesus did, and something I really can do as well. This is possible for me (and you) because we already have the presence of God in each of us-always. As Rohr points out in the quote above, Love is not something we do, it is our very identity (our only real identity). We can rest in that same “uncreated grace” and pour it out over and over again.
The next time you’re triggered by something – allow yourself to feel, hold the experience in a reflective space (prayer), and then trust in that uncreated grace which is already part of you and see if you are able to let go of the hurt, frustration, or fear, and sink back into the Divine Love which rests in you.