Going Public for God: Finding and Fulfilling Your Divine Mission
This article appeared in the September/October 2001 issue of Eastern Spirit.
Recently I gave a talk at the Unity Church in Chapel Hill about claiming and reclaiming who we really are and realizing our divine calling in this lifetime. As a society, we are currently experiencing a major shift in awareness in which we are being called—individually and collectively—to (re)align our values with spiritual principles rather than the rampant materialism that has long characterized the American Dream.
It is no accident that right now many corporations are down-sizing and the stock market is volatile; these economic downturns impel us to examine collectively the structures upon which we have built our “security.” Many people are being forced to realize that stocks (erroneously called “securities”) and other monetary holdings neither bring satisfaction nor fulfillment. The consumer mentality that drives us to have the latest and the best car, VCR, television, computer, DVD player, house, cell phone, fill-in-the-blank, etc. is not working for us anymore.
Instead, many of us are forming groups dedicated to simple living and reading books on simplifying our lives by authors such as Elaine St. James and Jeff Davidson. (I suppose we are still consuming books, but the price of a book versus a new wide-screen television obviously makes the book a better choice.) Many people I know are leaving unsatisfying jobs to start their own businesses and scaling down their lifestyles to make this freedom possible.
In short, as a society we are being forced to examine our common values—particularly those values associated with material wealth—and to figure out why we feel so dissatisfied, even empty. Why is it that the country that has the most “wealth” and uses most of the earth’s resources also has such high rates of depression, suicide, divorce, alcoholism, and so forth?
We often talk about the dark night of the soul on an individual level, but I suggest that our country has been experiencing a collective dark night of the soul ever since the industrial revolution in which we began to place much more of our faith in industry rather than community, in money rather than spiritual prosperity. Now it is time to clean up the darkness, and we certainly cannot rely on our politicians to do it. So what must each of us do individually?
The way out of the collective void, I contend, is for each of us to GO PUBLIC FOR GOD, to find and fulfill that mission which is ours and ours alone to accomplish in this world. Even if you believe in reincarnation, as many of us who study metaphysics do, this is your only life in this body as this particular personality. I only have one lifetime to spend as Barnsley Brown, so I had best make it a masterpiece. After all, there is no rewind button for my life or for yours. Our lives are what we co-create them to be with our Higher Power, whether you choose to call that numinous entity Mother/Father God, Great Spirit, Divine Being, or some other appellation.
How then do we co-create the best life imaginable? We cultivate our GOD-consciousness in three steps, steps that may happen consecutively or concurrently, depending on our unique life’s journey. We must:
- Glimpse Our Direction
- Grow Our Direction
- Give Our Direction
Through these three steps, our GOD-consciousness is brought to fruition and we are able to make an impact in our spheres of influence and our world.
My own story goes like this. I came to Chapel Hill to begin my PhD in 1989. Little did I know that I was also going to undertake a course of study—what the Divine intended for me—in the healing arts. I had a very frightening car accident which exposed me to the Reiki Method of Natural Healing and I began to study it. In 1994, after much study, I was certified as a Reiki Master and began to teach Reiki. As I learned and practiced Reiki, I also studied a number of other healing modalities including Healing Touch, Touch for Health, Rebirthing, dowsing, and so on. These studies were the first moments when I glimpsed my direction, but I was still unwilling to follow that path.
In fact, I was determined to be a university professor, so I finished my PhD in 1996 and taught at Wake Forest University, UNC-Chapel Hill, and Duke. After a very arduous job search, I was offered a permanent position at a UNC campus, but by this time, the nudge towards healing work rather than “professoring” had become a full-fledged push. I could no longer ignore the longings of my spirit, and I began to be honest with myself.
Fortunately, our spirit ALWAYS knows what it is that we are meant to do. Do you know that the entire time I was working as a professor, I was also growing my direction, namely preparing for my work as a writer, teacher, and healer? I was taking small business courses, gathering information, talking to practitioners, and putting all this stuff in a ring binder FOUR YEARS before I made the decision to follow my path. Sometimes we are growing our direction and we don’t even know it!
Since last August when I made the decision to turn down that professorship and start my own business, Spirited Solutions™, I have been actively giving my direction. Giving our direction means two things: 1) giving it up to our Higher Power and letting Him/Her work through us, and 2) giving our direction to others by sharing our time, talents, and skills. When we give our direction by speaking to groups, writing articles, volunteering our time to do healing work for AIDS patients, or whatever it is that we do, we are prospered on all levels of body, mind, and spirit.
The way out of the collective dark night of the soul for our society is through the efforts of each individual who, taking full responsibility for his or her life’s purpose in cooperation with the Divine, leaves an indelible mark on the world. We must go public for God in whatever way our spirit urges us. Your spirit is speaking to you now as you read this article. Listen, and know that your mission—whether you are glimpsing, growing, or giving it—is already there within you, ready to burst forth with power and grace. Surrender to it and let the Universe bless you with GOD-consciousness and a life beyond your wildest imaginings!