Self-Trust and Our Spirit
by Barbara Wilder
An important part of our spiritual growth and development is beginning to trust in our own inner guidance. To do this we must develop self-trust. But self-trust is extremely difficult when we feel that we are all alone in a dangerous universe. Living in a society that has cut itself off from a divine source, we feel at lose ends when we have no person or persons to whom we can turn for help and guidance. The main god of modern western society is science, which doesn't lend us much inner guidance or support. All people, whether they're aware of it or not, yearn for a connection with a divine source. And it is when we become aware that we truly are connected to a divine spirit that we can relax a little and see that self-trust is part of trusting in our own spirit in conjunction with divine spirit.
If you have been unaware of your own divine spirit connection until now, it may take a little time for you to remember when you last experienced guidance or help that sprang from outside the realm of logic, but I assure you that if you spend some time looking back over your life you will discover at least one event in your life that defied rational explanation – a moment when you experienced yourself trusting in and being helped and supported by a divine source.
The best place to search for these irrational, divine moments are during the difficult times in your life. Life's circumstances often force us to surrender to the Divine because there are some things that we simply don't have the strength to handle our own. Those times come up when, no matter how hard we try, we can't control the situation, fix the hurt, or solve the problem. Death, divorce, severe accidents, money losses, and parenting are a few of the things that can trigger a divine intervention.
As I began to look back over my own life I remembered a simple yet powerful example related to parenting. The responsibility of raising a child can often be overwhelming, especially for very young mothers. There you are, footloose and fancy free, and suddenly the life of this tiny person is given into your care. You know it is your responsibility to keep this baby safe, but the world is a frightening place, and some days it seems like you may not be able to protect your child from everything.
When I was twenty-two I had an eighteen-month-old son. I lived in a constant state of fear that he would hurt himself and die. One day I took him to the beach for the first time. It was a gorgeous Southern California day. I set my precious baby boy down on a blanket and sat back to watch him experience the beauty of the ocean. The first thing he did was toddle off the blanket and scoop a handful of sand into his mouth. I leapt up and cleaned the sand out of his mouth the best I could and scolded him. Within seconds he was right back at it. I was very upset. I wasn't sure what eating sand would do, but I knew it couldn't be good. Nothing I did or said made the slightest impression on him. I took him into the water to play in the waves, but he just scooped up the wet sand and ate that.
I was becoming exhausted from the fear that I could not protect my child. The only thing I could think to do was take him home, but we were with other people who weren't ready to leave. Then, suddenly, for no apparent reason, I had this overwhelming feeling of calm. I sensed that I could stop worrying – that my baby would be all right. From somewhere the knowledge that his life wasn't in my hands alone popped into my mind like a little epiphany. Someone, somewhere was telling me that the life and death of my child was out of my control. From that moment I became a more relaxed mother. I learned to let him try things and find out for himself, when it was appropriate. I didn't relinquish my responsibility, but I realized that I wasn't alone. I began to trust that I was doing the very best job I could, and that the rest was not up to me. Over my lifetime I have been reminded many times that I am not alone. And each time I let go and trust divine spirit, I am able to trust myself a little more at the same time.
To find some moments of divine interventions in your life, ponder the following questions. Write about them. Take them into your meditation. See what you begin to remember. Remembering that we are not alone helps us to remember that we can trust ourselves, because we are equal partners with the Divine.
QUESTIONS TO PONDER
- Can you remember a time when you trusted your own judgment completely?
- Can you remember a time when you knew a divine power of some kind was helping or guiding you?
- Have you ever had to give up and just trust that your life or the situation was out of your hands?
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