L3: Recognizing Value

All we have is this very moment. In fact, we don’t even have that – that moment is already gone. And that one. And that one. And that one. Everything is in constant motion and transitory. As we dance in response to the rhythm of life, it can be easy to take things for granted.

Every day offers multiple opportunities and these are revealed to us through other people, objects, and circumstances. At every moment, we are exposed to intra-, inter-, and extra-personal energies that have the power to transform our thoughts, feelings, and actions both in the present moment and throughout our lives. When we are open to goodness, we will find it everywhere.

We have to actively seek value when we feel challenged, tired, overwhelmed, angry, or otherwise miserable. The gifts of the universe are not always readily apparent to us, particularly when we are enveloped in negativity. It sometimes takes years of developing understanding and reflecting upon our experiences until we are able to recognize the good among the bad.

On what was supposed to be my first day of high school, I was raped. This event, and especially the response of my family and police to the situation, emotionally wounded me and shattered my young life. I submerged into a dark depression and did not begin to make headway for about five years. What were supposed to be the best years of my life were actually the worst. I was not only angry about what happened to me, I was stuck in a hopeless response that further damaged my psyche and soul. I did more damage to myself than anyone else could have ever done to me.

I now know that I would not be alive today, and I would not be the vibrant, radiant, energetic, positive person that I have become, if it were not for this experience. At the time of this event, I was already spiraling down a dangerous path. Without this intervention, I would have most likely either killed myself or been killed. During those five desperate years of yearning, I explored all aspects of humanity imaginable which developed my insight and understanding about myself, others, and the universe. Although this was the most tragic and difficult experience of my life, it has also taught me important lessons that I needed to learn in order to survive.

I would never wish tragedy upon another human being, but recognize that in my life, this was my path toward personal growth and spiritual enlightenment. By choosing to seek and understand the positive aspects of our life situations, our ability to graciously feel and express gratitude will grow.

Live your life filled with gratitude, wonder, and delight. Express gratitude for all the good in your life through stewardship, affirmations, prayer, and sharing with others. Take time to show interest in others and genuinely express your love for them. Express gratitude to others for all that they have shared with you through personal notes, words of praise, and favors in turn. Be consistent and thorough in showing appreciation for, and reverence of, the people, things, and opportunities that make up your life.

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