All of us feel overwhelmed by life at one point or another. Men and women worry about doing it all - all while wanting it all. It's a normal experience to feel lost, overwhelmed, and confused by our life experiences. Some feel adrift. Others feel disoriented.
When Life Feels Too Much To Handle
This week, I had two separate conversations with two different friends about the challenges they are facing in their lives. These are two, strong independent women who work, mother, and co-create their lives with their husbands. They are going through normal issues that we all face in life - career challenges, death, disease, uncertainty, and so on. They are trying to handle everything themselves. It's no wonder that they felt burned out, tired, and over the issues.
Have you been there? Have you felt like you have just had too much to handle? Have you ever felt that you're doing everything on your own? Do you feel that every day is full of responsibilities and sometimes unwanted surprises that you're caught putting out fires and just trying to get through another day?
I know I have been there. I have felt this way many times before. We all want more out of life. We wall want life to change. And then, there are those periods of our life where we feel stuck, confused, spinning out in circles and we ask, "When am I going to get a break?"
After listening to my friends, I told them something that is a big theme for me to share this week. It first started with an important conversation with my husband Franck.
Franck said he sometimes feel like he has so much to do and to handle. He said his entire days from morning until night are non-stop. Between kids, work, home responsibilities, and our pets, he said he found it hard to push forward on other things or just get a grip on his feelings about everything that is happening and changing. He said he felt an overwhelming responsibility for everything; to keep it all moving in an upward progression. In a way, he felt that if he stopped, then everything around him would fall apart. As if his centripetal force was what kept his life moving and together.
Letting Go of Control AND Trusting God
After listening to him share his feelings, I went to study. As I was focusing on my work, I heard Spirit say, "Tell Franck to give his life to God, so God can fight his battles for him."
I walked down stairs for lunch. I said, "Do you feel like you're fighting all these battles on your own?"
He looked at me and nodded. He said he felt as if there was so much going on that he had to be on guard all the time.
I said, "You know, if you give your life, your heart, your career, and your problems to God, s/he will take care of them for you. Would you like that?"
He didn't understand how that actually works, this whole concept of "giving your life to God."
It sounds like the Christian "getting saved" concept. It is, actually. It could also be like the Buddhist who go "the Way".
Further explained, when we left that "Oneness" of God to incarnate into humans, we were given the gift of "Free Will". We can choose to walk with God in consciousness. Or, do whatever we want, thinking we're the center of the Universe that makes everything happen.
That free will option is why we choose to live the way we live. It's why we choose to ignore the signs of life that are answering our prayers. Free will is why we turn down opportunities or accept them. We can refuse help and try to do everything on our own. Free will is freedom. However, freedom exists on a spectrum, it's not an absolute in an earthly sense. We have degrees of freedom like toddlers in a garden (they can't leave the garden, they can do anything they want within in the bounds of the garden).
When we give our lives, hearts, children, and careers to God, forces more powerful than ourselves can guide us, protect us, and comfort us. Of course, forces that are more powerful are more intelligent and more connected to the Universe than we are in this limited state of human conscious being. When we release control over to God and act in faith, we're able to access and experience greater levels of freedom. And, as a result, greater levels of understanding.
Handing It All To God
So, I said to Franck, "Let's hand over your life to God. Let's surrender control, worry, responsibility, and all the burdens to God and see what happens."
And so, we prayed:
"Dear God, I surrender my life to you. I give to you my burdens, my pain, and the hurt that I carry in my heart and body. I give to you my career, my family, my finances, and every other aspect of my life. I welcome your presence, your guidance, your wisdom to come into my life and in my heart. In Jesus' name. Amen."
Some might call this the Salvation Prayer. Having grown up within the Christian paradigm, this is what we were told in the church. But, it's way bigger than a church paradigm. Rather, it's saying something profound.
It's an acknowledgement of our human frailty. It's a realization that we are, in human form, so limited and unaware of the greater forces at play in our lives. It is a surrender of the control and responsibility we believe we have over others, situations, and outcomes. It's handing over everything that plagues us in human form: anxiety, worry, shame, confusion and so forth - and opening up our hearts and minds willingly to the oneness of life and letting it in to enhance and improve our life experiences.
One can't say this prayer without sincerely meaning it. Why? Because when you say this prayer you come from a place of understanding and sacrifice. You're sacrificing the illusion of free will, power, and control for greater understanding of what freedom, power, and control really mean.
I explained to my friends what giving it all to God really means. They understood and I invited them to do so. We can't give our problems to a coach, a friend, or a loved one and expect them to fully understand or fix them. We can share and they can help, but there are greater forces at work in the world that can solve our problems more creatively than humans alone can imagine. That's what it means to surrender to God; not be enslaved by ritual or religion.
Does this make sense to you? Would you like to get go of the battles that you are fighting? Would you like to open up your heart and mind to the greater possibilities of life? Give the prayer mentioned above a try. See what happens and let me know of the results as they unfold.