As you move through life, you meet problems of all shapes and sizes. Some are hardly worth mentioning; while others are life-threatening or earth-shattering. Yet, they all have one thing in common. Each problem is merely the wrapping that hides a gift which has been custom designed to your specifications.
If you choose to entertain yourself in your life with the wrapping paper, the bow, and the box, that’s perfectly all right. You can cuss them and discuss them. You can admire all the subtleties of their design. But, if you are distracted by the problemthat is, the wrappingsyou will never be able to receive the gift that was prepared especially for you.
No matter what the problem is, the gift it carries has a peculiar quality. It cannot be delivered directly into your consciousness or your awareness. You must actively choose to acknowledge it and to accept it as your own. Only you can remove the wrapping, and only you can remove the gift from the box.
When you have a problem, that problem does not only exist outside of you. It is a part of your mental world; it actually emerges from the pattern of your thoughts and feelings. This is difficult for some people to accept because on a conscious level, they hold fast to the idea that they would not choose to be in their present circumstances. However, it is not that you chose the specific situation that has manifested. You simply chose attitudes that resonated with the “problem” that has manifested.
What’s The Point?
All problems serve one purpose. They cause you to focus your attention and give you the choice of either looking to the world for answers or looking to your Creative Source for answers. Problems give you an opportunity to change your perspective on your life. This is a good thing because the perspective you now have has led you to the problem currently manifesting in your experience, regardless of whether that problem is physical, psychological, or social. Don’t make a quantum leap, however, and assume that everyone has cancer for the same reasons, or that everyone who experiences bankruptcy followed the same path to get there.
Cancer, for example, is an extreme experience in that it threatens one’s physical existence. Such an intense problem is an indicator that there is much to be gained spiritually if one is willing to look past the wrappingsthe pain, the anguish, the fear of death, and the regret for things not done. Experiencing cancer may simply allow one person to redirect her focus so she can stop and smell the roses, reconnect with who she really is, strip away the persona and realize that the riches she sought were inside her all along. Another may learn the power of forgiveness because the cancer serves as a powerful metaphor for how her anger has eaten away at her and destroyed the quality of her life.
Despite the place of honor many give to suffering, it doesn’t matter how much you suffer if you never look past the misery and embrace the gift it holds for you. If, instead, your suffering is your focus, it becomes what is called “useless, unnecessary suffering” and serves no purpose in your spiritual development.
What Choices Do I Have?
If you choose to wallow in your problem, allowing your fear to overwhelm you, the problem will devastate you physically or psychologically. If you choose only to look to the external world for answers, you may force yourself into surviving the present experience, but the problem will return in some other form. Why? Because Spirit never gives up on you. God always offers new opportunities for you to embrace your wholeness.
To reach inside your box of suffering to take hold of a new idea, faith is required. It demands a belief in “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” It requires seeing something beyond the problem itself. The measure of your faith is your ability to acknowledge and accept that new idea into your world.
If you do choose to open the door of your soul inward toward God to search for answers, you will come out on the other side of this experience with a greater understanding of yourself than ever before, which is the purpose of your life on this earth. You are here to learn how to express as a creative being – one made in the image and likeness of God – by continually availing yourself of every opportunity that diminishes the darkness that is cast by the belief in separation between you and God and you and others.
So, any problem that doesn’t destroy you, either physically or psychologically, does indeed make you stronger!