Acceptance is the currency of love.
~ Teal Swan
Everything is as it should be is a sentiment sometimes viewed as outrageous — profane, even. When we are inundated with news from around the globe — and from right here at home — that includes senseless shootings, the COVID-19 crisis, harrowing acts of war, a never-ending opioid epidemic, and all manner of personal heartbreak and suffering, everything is as it should be can ring untrue and cruel.
But if we are to be in a place of acceptance of ourselves as well as of our circumstances and the people and the world around us, doesn’t it compel us to contemplate that the philosophy of everything is as it should be could actually be true? Doesn’t it call us to reflect on both our brokenness and our blessings?
Instead of fighting against what is, we could instead accept and surrender to the facts of what we’ve co-created, of how we’ve become broken, of what has caused our pain and suffering, and lastly, of how we are blessed in our brokenness.
As Mary Ann Barrett OP recently wrote in her prayer, Now is the Acceptable Time 2 Corinthians 6:2., we are all indeed both blessed and broken:
We welcome God’s
to be the Body of Christ,
“blessed and broken.”
One option to allow ourselves to rest in the tenet of everything is as it should be is to employ it as a jumping off point to contemplation, to settle and to soothe oneself, to make change. If we fully embrace acceptance is the currency of love, we can be led to recognize its gifts.
If we think of Christ’s sufferings on the cross, would we change it? Or was everything as it should have been when Jesus gave up his spirit so humankind could be brought back into right relationship with God?
Suffering and brokenness have meaning — we unite ourselves with the Divine when we accept suffering. If we accept our own crosses, or brokenness, with lovingkindness, we can draw closer to truth, to God, and to our higher selves — these are our blessings. One feeds the other.
There’s always wisdom waiting inside the suffering, if only we are courageous enough to be still and quiet so we can fully and gratefully acknowledge and accept our blessings.
- Find a quiet spot where you feel safe dropping into stillness.
- In the stillness, ask yourself what circumstances have left you feeling broken and notice what comes into your awareness.
- Sit with all the emotions that rise up for you — try your best not to resist any feelings.
- If you begin to feel anxious, fearful, or other intense emotions remind yourself as many times as you need to that you are safe.
- Ask yourself what is the cost of refusing to accept your brokenness or the situation or circumstances you find yourself resisting.
- Sit awhile longer to contemplate (or begin journaling) the facts and the fiction of what it is you’re having trouble accepting — notice that the fiction, or story, you create around a difficult situation can lead to more suffering. Always attempt to seek the facts of that which is troubling you.
- Next, ask yourself what the wisdom or blessing is for inside this brokenness and suffering. If you are having trouble finding the blessing, use your mind’s eye to zoom out from the situation. Try looking at the big picture rather than telescoping in on the minute details.
- Allow yourself to see what would be possible if you accepted that everything is as it should be.
Dominican Center Marywood at Aquinas College is a ministry of Dominican Sisters ~ Grand Rapids.