Sunday, November 22, 2009

Potential, or Capacity...?

What if, in the eyes of God, we're all complete, perfect, and how have UNlimited capacity to express it brilliantly...?

I wonder how many of us have been cursed with "potentiality"...? Is it just me, or did anyone else grow up hearing about all the "potential" you have? Did adults look at you, somewhat wistfully (if not with unadulterated desperation), and speak of "all the potential" that you had ..? And did you pick up on the subtle (if not glaring!) message that this was in stark contrast to whatever you currently WERE -- as if to say, "you look like an utter failure, and I'm at my wits end with you, BUT, I'm stubbornly denying it, and, O God Please Hear Me, I hope-hope-hope this is just a stage you will outgrow, and that you will eventually be good enough!"

And, if this person were perhaps a parental figure, the unspoken post-script might well be, "SO that you will reflect well upon me!"

Ahhhh, such pressure is put upon people who are cursed with their potentiality...!

We're then under the tyranny of endlessly projecting into the future, rather than enjoying the present ... living in the despair of never measuring up to the nebulous standard of the projected-potential. Our ego takes the position of the tyrant who demands that we be who we think others think we *should* be ... without benefit of the guide-book for how to achieve this great mystery ...!


Consider, on the other hand, capacity. Capacity speaks of the immediate present -- the NOW. To what is *at hand*. Would Jesus tell us to "be perfect, as your Father in heaven is perfect" if it were not remotely possible...? How cruel, if it weren't! The key is not in achieving, or attaining, or accumulating ... but in *owning* what we already have inside of us.

When all we have is the curse of potentiality, we can become frozen by our choices ... we can see all manner of possible paths to choose, laid out before us, and inside we can hear that voice that warns us that we'd "better get it right, or else there will be utter waste, as well as dire consequences!" It's often paralyzing if we believe we have to figure out which path leads us to the realization of our "potential."

What if we consider this: rather than obsessing over Point Z, how about if we look at what's right in front of us, and choose to step from Point A to Point B...? What if we listen within, and realize that God meant it when He said we would hear Him saying which way to go ...? And what if we realized that even if we take what we THINK is the "wrong" path, we will end up learning whatever it is we need to learn, which will enable us to make a clearer choice the next time ..? What if mistakes are the God-given vehicles for learning?

Which brings me to another form of paralysis: perfectionism.

When we think we have to do ALL things well, the first time we do them, we will sit on our proverbial (or literal) butts, bemoaning out self-induced misery...! But we can be virtuosos, once we realize that virtuosity in life doesn't mean singing perfectly -- it means singing out loud, to the best of our yet-discovered capacity...!

Have you ever had the nagging, depressing feeling that your life is yet to start, even as you look in the mirror and realize that you've lived for a certain number of decades...? Have you ever wished for the permission to cut loose, let go, and REALLY start to live fully? To experience the Abundant Life we were promised...? Do you have a sense of reigned-in, suppressed, pent-up energy and talent? Is your talent "buried" (& do you realize who buried it?)? Do you have a hidden-belief that you were meant to do great things, coupled with a sneaking suspicion and fear that you've been wasting your life...?

Do you feel as if you've been locked up within, unable to get free?

Guess who holds the key?

We're each our own prison-guard.

We have locked the door with our own fear.

Our egos are invested in having us die with the same unfulfilled potential we think we were born with.

It takes a miracle to set us free ... the good news is that a miracle has been provided for just that freedom.

Shalom, Dena


marianne said...

Wow...yes. So often we do sit around waiting for that potential to materialize all the while, forgetting the capacity we have to change our lives as well as someone else's this very moment. We think we have to wait until we develop that ever present potential and then we will actaully be worth something. We forget that we all have so many gifts to use and give right now and if we don't use them they begin to atrophy and die...the only way to realize that mysterious potential is to live your life at full capacity today...this minute. Who can you smile at? Who can you call? Who needs to hear your voice? Who needs food you can donate? Who needs a gift of time or love or money or a book or a meal or a pat on the back? If we are doing these things every day and flowing outward, the flow will not only replenish but multiply! I kind of like the "pay it forward" concept of living...keep moving; don't stop to look back...just keep the blessings flowing.

Dena said...

I LOVE your thoughts Marianne!

Jesus said to not bury our "talent" ... but to use it. I notice that as they used theirs, it multiplied. The opposite of our "limitation/scarcity" mindset.

Sheesh, all the many opportunities to give what we have!

MysticBrit said...

Great positive thoughts, as ever, Dena.

I've come to view 'mistakes' as 'things that don't work for the greatest benefit of the greatest number of people', and as such just require us to be aware of that fact and do things differently next time. No condemnation, just a change of mind.

We have the unique gift of our Selves to give to all around us, and that can be expressed in so many ways. When we are being our Selves we are in the best possible relationship to Everything Else.

And yes, we do indeed imprison our Selves in the imaginary prison of fear, until we see it for the fraud that it is and fling open the door to Life.