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Impatience and Frustration

     

While there are opportunities for greater growth than is occurring, neither your Assembly nor the friends must burden themselves with feelings of failure at every disappointment, for such feelings are self-­fulfilling and can easily cause stagnation in the expansion of the Cause. The tendency toward frustration, sometimes induced by a desire for instant gratification, must be resisted by an effort to gain a deeper appreciation of the divine process. (From a letter of the Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States, May 1994)

I want what I want and I want it now and when it doesn’t happen, I’m disappointed, frustrated, resentful and full of self-pity.  I wonder what went wrong.  I ask myself:  What could I have done differently?  Why “they” weren’t responding to my texts, emails or phone calls?  Why didn’t “they” do what they promised to do?  These reactions and beliefs leave me feeling bitter and estranged from people and I don’t want to try harder or even try again.  I give up.  I’m trapped in the prison of self!  Nothing changes.  It’s not a very fun place to live, but it’s a well-worn rut and I go there often.

I forget that everything in life is uniquely positioned for my spiritual growth and development.  Every test is an opportunity to draw me closer to God or further into self-will.   I forget that God’s got a plan.  He’s in charge of the decline of the old world order.  Everything that’s meant to happen will do so in God’s perfect timing.  I don’t need to figure anything out.  I don’t need to push any mountains or swim upstream.  I can relax into the comfort and protection of God’s nestling wings and let him steer the course for me for awhile.  He’s my employer.  All I have to do is take my marching orders from Him, many times a day.  What’s next God?  How can I be of service in this situation, God?

Remembering that there’s no need to rush or force the process, I am grateful!

What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation?  I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!

If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Letting Go of Anger and Bitterness

 

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Letting Go of Anger

As a devoted believer you are urged to strive to develop for­giveness in your heart toward your parents who have abused you in so disgraceful a manner, and to attain a level of insight which sees them as captives of their lower nature, whose actions can only lead them deeper into unhappiness and separation from God. By this means, you can liberate yourself from the anger to which you refer in your letter.  (From a letter written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to me, 9 September, 1992)

When I was first reclaiming my memories of extreme childhood abuse, I wanted to be a “good Bahá’í” and didn’t know what that looked like, so I wrote to the House of Justice and this is what they said about how to liberate myself from anger. 

The most significant lessons from this quote for me were first, I didn’t need to forgive them directly.  I could “strive to develop forgiveness in my heart.”  I loved that I didn’t have to instantly forgive as I thought, but as long as I was striving to develop it, I was on the right track.  At that time, I couldn’t forgive what I thought was unforgiveable, but I could ask God to forgive my abusers and so I did.  Later I asked God for the willingness to be able to forgive and later I was able to forgive them by myself, but it was a process that took many years.

Secondly, I was to see them as captives of their own lower nature, which let me hate what they did and still be able to forgive them for being human and indulging in their lower natures.  We all have a lower nature we need to conquer and as long as I could only see theirs, I stayed stuck in anger, but once I realized that we are all sinners, and could see where my lower nature had me stuck, it became easier to forgive them.

There are ways I can let go of anger and get to forgiveness and I am grateful!

What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation?  I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!

If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Letting Go of Anger and Bitterness

Help Keep This Site Alive