OUR WHOLLY, HOLY WORTHINESS
Let's start with a prayer: Father, Mother, God; we thank you; we give gratitude to you that you have deemed us worthy to have your spirit, your breath, your life. Help us, in this life, to remember who we were meant to be. Help us to step forward as the powerful beings that we are. Thank you, God. Amen.
This month we are looking at ideas that bring new meaning to living from a place of True Power by taking the word P.O.W.E.R. and making it into an acronym to look at the qualities that, when combined, support us in living from that place.
So far, we've looked at these ways to live from a place of True Power:
P for expressing our Passion and Purpose and
O for coming from a place of Oneness
Today we look at the W.
Before we do, let me share with you a story - a true story.
Back several decades ago, there was a little band. It was a pretty good band. They played in local venues and began gaining notoriety and getting a bit of a name for themselves.
As they grew in popularity, the drummer of the band started to wrestle with whether he was worthy of being in it. He thought the other members really were the band, and he was pretty much the odd man out. He was feeling so badly about this that he was seriously thinking about quitting.
He decided to confide in his friend, the lead guitar player, and much to the drummer's surprise, the guitar player said, "Odd you should tell me that. I have been thinking the rest of you were the real band and that I should quit."
Later the pair told the story to one of the band's lead singers, who said that he, too, had doubts about whether he really was good enough to be in the band and wondered if he should quit.
Let's stop this story for a moment, because I want you to touch in with yourself. Have you ever been in a group and felt like you just didn't belong? That everyone else warranted being there, but you? That you felt (perhaps feel today!) that if people only knew you, then they too would realize that you really weren't good enough to be there? Worthy of being here or anywhere!?
You don't have to answer these questions - they are rhetorical question -but, since I am seeing heads nodding, I can deduce that many of you are saying yes to these feelings.
Well, my friends, take heart, because you are in pretty good company. You may have heard of our mystery musicians who didn't think they were good enough, worthy enough to be in their little band.
The drummer was Ringo Starr; the guitar player, George Harrison; and the lead singer, none other than Sir (although he wasn't a "Sir" then) Paul McCartney!a
Apparently, John Lennon had a stronger sense of self! Go, John!
But isn't it fascinating to learn that 3 out of the 4 members of arguably the greatest rock band ever, if not the greatest, certainly the most influential, thought they weren't good enough to be in it. They didn't feel they were Wholly, Holy Worthy, which is what our letter of the day represents.
If you are ever feeling bad about yourself, not worthy, not good enough - remember Ringo, George and Paul. And remember that you too are a rock star! Maxine sings a few bars "Baby, You Can Drive My Car" by the Beatles
The question of the morning is. Who is driving your car? Your innate value and worth, in other words, your Power? Or your feelings of unworthiness and not good enough?
FEELING UNWORTHY - It's a big, big block to living from your true Power. You just heard me say that didn't you?
But I'm wondering if you noticed what I did NOT say. I did NOT say, One of our big blocks is BEING unworthy.
Did you notice that? Because here is a big Spiritual Truth that you already know in your head but may not know in your heart . . .
Every single one of us is worthy! We could not be any other way.
And it doesn't matter . . .
what we were told or not told;
how we were treated or not treated;
whether we were abused or abandoned;
what we ourselves have done or not done . . .
. . . over our lifetime. None of that changes our inherent Wholly, Holy Worthiness.
Ernest Holmes in This Thing Called You, wrote: ". . .. we can desecrate but never lose the divine spark. It is always there. . .. your spirit already is perfect, an individualized center in the consciousness of God. God has made you out of Himself. The only material He had was the Substance of His own being. The only mind He had to implant was His Mind. The only spirit He had to impart was His own Spirit."b
That is the spiritual truth, but rather than believe this, here's what some of us believe.
We believe that right before souls are birthed into human experience, they go through a "stamping" lineup. They stand in this big, long line and God walks by like the Inspector General with two big stamps in his hands. One says "worthy" the other says, you guessed it, "unworthy."
We think God walks along stamping each person's forehead: "Worthy . . .. worthy . . .. worthy . . .. oops, this one's unworthy . . .. worthy . . . worthy . . .. yipes, this one is definitely unworthy."
And for those who have a more traditional religious view -- that we are all born in original sin -- then they might believe there is only one stamp with which everyone gets stamped - the unworthy one. But even still, you think that the stamp was placed with a bit more force on you! Am I right about that?!
But I want you to know that not every religious tradition teaches that --- New Thought certainly doesn't.
No, we teach that we are not born in original sin - we are not born unworthy - but rather we are born in original innocence - completely worthy and deserving of the Unconditional Acceptance and Love of God as our divine birthright.
God's grace is free and poured upon, in and through each and every one of us.
Hear these words again: ". . . your spirit already is perfect, an individualized center in the consciousness of God. God has made you out of Himself. The only material He had was the Substance of His own being. The only mind He had to implant was His Mind. The only spirit He had to impart was His own Spirit."
And from the Bhagavad Gita (5:19): "God is flawless and the same in all. Therefore, all persons are established in the One."c
So please hear me this morning -- God does not come around stamping unworthy on the foreheads of souls ready to pop into this life expression.
But somewhere along the line, we stamped ourselves unworthy. Yes, it's true, we may have had help . . .
. . . by what we were told or not told by the church or others, or
. . . by how we were treated or not treated, or
. . . even by things we have done we regret . . .
. . . but ultimately somewhere along the line, we have each made up a story that we are unworthy and then we have felt unworthy and then we have acted, manifested, and lived out of unworthiness!
Spiritual author and poet Thomas Merton once said: "Others can give you a name or a number, but they can never tell you who you really are. That is something you yourself must discover from within."d
FEELING UNWORTHY is a result of the story you've told yourself about yourself. Feeling unworthy is not a fact, it is a story you made up.
It is my deepest, most heartfelt desire that each and every one of you see who you are - who you REALLY are - see the infinite beauty that is within you and who you are meant to be. It is my deepest desire that you not only see it, but that you then live from it!! This is Living from Your True Power!
Let's make this more personal as I invite you into an internal exploration. Close your eyes for the next few moments and take an inventory of your feelings of worthiness. . .. I want you to look for any pockets or knots of unworthiness/not good enough-ness that might be hanging around in you. . .. If you find a pocket or knot of unworthiness (and you may find more than one, but for this morning let your intuition determine which one you will focus on right now), breathe into it.
Let the breath of Spirit surround it and fill it. Don't try to figure out or analyze why it's there. Please, please, please don't chastise yourself because it is "still there after all my years of spiritual work!" Just notice that it is there and breathe into it.
And as you breathe into it, I want you to see the knot slowly begin to untie. With each deep breath directed at the knot, it loosens until at last it is untied. So now, in the place of the knot, you just see a ribbon floating, and you watch it simply float away. And as it floats, away, you bring your attention back to the room, back to your surroundings, wiggle fingers and toes and open your eyes when you are ready.
Speak to me for a few moments. What do you feel right now?
Now the thing is, many of you have heard and perhaps even done things like this before. More than once. The problem is you haven't believed it; or you did in the moment, but it didn't stick.
So, we are going to anchor our work this morning with something that I trust, I trust will put the issue of worthiness to rest once and for all.
You may or may not know this about me, but I am an ordained Worthiness Minister - and I have the regal trappings of such an ordination! This is my special worthiness ordination robe and this is a special, consecrated Worthiness Scepter.
This sacred ceremony I am about to do is usually done on a one-on-one basis, but I have been given special dispensation to perform it in a group setting just this once. I am going to anoint each and every one of you into the full expression of your inherent worthiness this very day! Are you ready?
Because after this you have lost your right to feel unworthy.
The stories you have made up of your unworthiness are now removed from your mind, from your heart and from your life.
By the Power vested in me as an Ordained Worthiness Minister and through the sacred energy of the Worthiness Scepter, I hereby anoint you as WHOLLY, HOLY WORTHY from now until forevermore!
Let's anchor this ceremony with words from the great Sufi mystic, Rumi, which I have slightly tweaked to make them personal affirmations. Please repeat them after me:
I was born with potential.
I was born with goodness and truth.
I was born with ideals and dreams.
I was born with greatness.
I was born with wings.
I was not meant for crawling, so I won't.
I have wings.
I will learn to use them, and I will fly.e
And so it is
aA Daily Dose of Sanity, October 22, by Alan Cohen
bErnest Holmes This Thing Called You, pg. 7
cBhagavad Gita (5:19)