Man’s highest station, however, is attained through faith in God in every Dispensation and by acceptance of what hath been revealed by Him . . .
This quote came to my attention at just the right moment. My life has been fraught with so much abuse, trauma, loss and disappointment that I often long for my next life to begin. The Bahá’í Writings promise a much better life next time round and I’m looking forward to that. I know that one of the purposes in this life is to acquire the virtues I’ll need in the next world, so some time ago, maybe when I was a new Bahá’í, I decided to set the bar high for myself, so that I could perfect as many virtues as possible, to acquire as many “spiritual brownie points” as possible to guarantee my best possible life in the next world. The Writings are full of “if you do this, God will do that” and being a black and white thinker, I latched onto these and strove to put them all into practice, and then beat myself up mercilessly when I couldn’t reach the standards I thought were being set for me by the Writings and the ongoing guidance of the House of Justice.
Nowhere do I feel this more keenly than when the statistics officer calls and asks what service I’m offering to my mostly inactive, very white cluster with a handful of elderly Bahá’ís who don’t have the energy to participate anymore. Because I haven’t been able to interest the local Bahá’ís or the wider community in the core activities, most of my service is in this online environment. My articles for this blog and for the Bahá’í Teachings blog reach so many people that I can take comfort that I am participating in a mass teaching event, and I can view the online environment as my receptive population, but none of it counts in the statistics. None of it helps my cluster get to milestone 2 (when we aren’t even at milestone 1 yet). None of it can I find in the ongoing messages of the House of Justice. All of this leads me into such deep despair that I burned out trying.
I believe that God is happy with my puny efforts, and can look Him in the eye when I get to the Pearly Gates. I see evidence that He magnifies my teaching and service activities and sends me opportunities to serve in ways that unfold easily and effortlessly. I know at some level that I can’t bargain with God for a better future, and slowly I’ve been learning about God’s infinite love, mercy and forgiveness of my sins. I’m learning that I don’t need brownie points. All of this flies out the window when I read the latest letter from the House of Justice and can’t find me and my efforts in it. For some time, I’ve been praying most fervently for God to show me in the Writings that my efforts are OK. Through this process, I’ve come to remember that my purpose in life is to know and worship God and not to get my cluster to milestone 2.
All of this to say that this quote seems to be what I was looking for. I’ve already reached my highest station, because I have faith in God in every Dispensation and I totally accept everything that has been revealed by Him. Thank you God for answered prayers. Please help me remember, so I can stop abasing myself!
Knowing I’ve already reached the highest station there is, I can stop judging myself 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 Criticizing Others