Know Thy Self & Set Yourself Free

Every person, and every living thing on this earth has a purpose. Our Spirit, the essence of who we are, makes an agreement with God - before we inhabit a physical body - to overcome whatever challenges we will face and to continue to strive to discover and fulfill that purpose. That's the whole point. To experience life and to learn.

Sometimes the challenges that we face are difficult, and appear to our mind to have hurt us. In order to leave those hurts behind, we have to learn how to forgive. Once we've learned how to forgive, we are free to experience life as we were meant to - with curiosity, wonderment and joy, and find that one thing that above all drives us - our passion and our purpose.

Human beings have been given a number of gifts from God: the ability to reason through our intellect, to feel through our emotions, and to communicate with our Spirit (who remains connected to the Holy Spirit and to God throughout our human life). Our Spirit is meant to guide us; provide us with help to overcome the challenges we will face - we only need to allow it to do so, and to do that, we need to learn how to balance our mind with our Spirit. Overcoming difficult experiences is how our whole being grows - the human part of us and our Spirit.

We come into each human life perfect, regardless of what our intellect assesses our life to be, and we remain perfect throughout our life. We just think we aren't. My physical body came into this world with a skeletal defect, but the truth of who I am was born exactly as God intended me to be. After all the surgeries to try to correct the physical deformity, and all the emotional trials I put myself through, I am still exactly who I was when I came into this world, only now I know who I am. I know with every beat of my heart, and with every cell in my body that despite all the physical and emotional pain I've experienced, I am exactly the way God intended me to be, and that I have a purpose.

I always was who I was meant to be, and even though I knew what my purpose was for many years, I allowed the fears, resentments and beliefs of other people contaminate my thoughts. I lived a dutiful and obedient life - and it was a life without passion. My Spirit was constantly trying to reach out to me, and sometimes I listened. Sometimes I paid attention to the nudges and I went in the direction my Spirit was guiding me to, but most of the time I followed the thoughts of my mind. The light of my Spirit was blocked by my ego, my frustration, my sadness, my resentments toward all the people I believed hurt me, and most importantly, the belief that I wasn't good enough.

I didn't understand, despite years and years of intensive academic study, that finding the answers to living a happy life wasn't going to be found in a text book. I wasn't going to learn how to be happy by studying how the mind works - I needed to figure out how my mind worked. If I was going to live authentically, I needed to understand how every single thought found its way into my mind. Once I understood how my mind worked, I could make better choices. If things were not pleasant in my life, I could dig into the filing cabinets of my mind and easily review my perceptions and figure out how they became rigid perspectives. Eventually, I learned that there was no one to blame for anything that had happened in my life.

I couldn't continue to blame my father who didn't know any other way to raise my brother, my sister and me other than to be extremely critical, manipulative and controlling. I came to understand that he didn't know any other way, and I was able to completely forgive him.

I couldn't continue to blame the man who raped me as I lay sleeping after watching his children for the evening while he and his wife were out drinking, because I didn't understand that the action rape had nothing to do with me. It had to do with him and his choices. I came to understand that even though he violated my physical body, the truth of who I am was never at risk. Eventually, and with God's grace, I was able to forgive him.

I couldn't continue to blame the family member who sexually molested me when I was a child because he didn't intend to inflict emotional scars. He was satisfying his own needs, and he didn't give five seconds of thought of how this would affect me at all. I didn't understand that he couldn't possibly have treated me with respect because he didn't respect himself. I didn't understand that the molestation happened to my body and not to me. It didn't and couldn't have ever touched the essence of who I am. My Spirit. Me. Eventually, and with God's grace, I was able to forgive him.

There was no person to blame for all the emotional abuse I suffered married to an addict, or for the sexual harassment I faced at work, or for the numerous failed surgeries that I endured. There was no person to blame for any of the things that I experienced in my life - including myself.

Forgiveness and understanding set me free, but I had to be ready to accept the truth. When I was finally ready to rid myself of all the anger, resentment, frustration and once and for all heal, everything that I needed to get me there found its way into my life.

Trust in the process of life. Have faith that you are not alone in this world, that you have a purpose, and that you will find it. Learn how to re-connect with your Spirit and learn the truth of you. Have the courage to dig into the filing cabinets of your mind and learn why you think the way you do. Set yourself free!

© 2018 Penny Hodgson. All rights reserved.

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