Have you ever felt like you were being tested, by the universe, god, or some unseen force that you can’t perceive with your senses, but you just know in your gut that there’s a presence of something more? Like your circumstances and the events enfolding in your life are just too perfectly sequential, and the timing of events too precise for it all to be coincidental.
Every now and then I’ll experience just that. I currently feel like for some reason I’m being tested. My theory is that it’s happening because I’m on the right path and whatever this conscious force is that’s doing the testing, it wants to find out first hand if I’ve got what it takes to get to that next level.
I do a lot of talking about keeping a positive mindset, believing in yourself, staying persistent, and never backing down until you get to where you want to be. I put it out there and now life is coming back and I’m being tested. I guess if you’re going to run your mouth, life wants to see if you can truly back it up. The struggle for anyone wanting more out of life is very real. It’s like an internal war that requires a strong mind, extreme will power, long term focus, and the ability to keep your head in the right place, with complete faith that you’re going to succeed.
I enjoy keeping a tentative awareness to the synchronicity, and patterns that emerge in my life which I’ve referred to before as universal truths. These “as above, so below,” style metaphors can be applied in various ways. Concepts that apply on the physical level are also applicable in the emotional realm.
With weight lifting and athletics, you’ll commonly hear about pushing past the pain barrier. When your physical body experiences pain, you exert your will power and push yourself to keep going. This is where your greatest gains are made. When asked about how many sit ups he does, Mohammed Ali said he doesn’t keep track of how many he does in total. He only starts counting once it starts to hurt. Those are the ones that truly matter, and are an accurate measure of your will to achieve what you’ve set out to accomplish.
Just as sure as the principle applies to physical pain, it’s also applicable to emotional pain. When you try something new, when you walk a less traveled path, there’s much less certainty in your future with regards to your ultimate level of achievement. The emotional pain period is the point where you begin to doubt yourself. You become frustrated with the rate at which you’re advancing. You see others getting to the level you want to reach and wonder why them, and not me?
You start to think, will I ever get there? Is it ever going to take off, and evolve into what I dreamed it could be? Am I just delusional to believe that there’s more to life than working the 9-5, and linear career advancement? That is exactly what the emotional pain period looks like and similar to weight lifting, this is also the point where many people give up.
Enduring the pain period, exerting your will, holding on to your self-confidence, self-love, determination, relentlessness, refusing to back down until you persevere and come out the other end is a test. When you’re being tested, be happy because successfully pushing through the pain period results in the most growth. It’s the time where you get the largest return on your investment.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Never give up. The glory is to be had. Keep pushing and force this life to give you everything you demand of it. When you reach the pain period smile, knowing that it’s time for a big push followed by an even bigger reward.
This is what faith truly is. I grew up in a family that regularly attended church where I heard that word faith thrown around a lot. What bothered me about this was the way most people there claimed to be faithful, but more so as a buzz word to throw around and not so much what the words mean, taken at their face value.
In other words, what I observed were people making a claim but living in a way that was incongruent with this statement. I’m speaking in generalizations here and this certainly isn’t an accurate statement to make about all people who attend church. What bothered me was the hypocritical disconnect between the claims made by these particular people and their actions.
You can say you’re faithful and expect things to work out in your favor, but if you’re afraid to take risks that could drastically improve the quality of your life then your not really faithful, are you?
I guess what I observed were people who wanted to believe that by saying they were faithful, things would just magically work out for them without taking any action what so ever. Like all you have to do is pump yourself up with positive expectation and you’ll become a magnet for positive change. They wanted a shortcut that involved a force outside of themselves to get what they wanted, and for this external force to give them favoritism based on the fact that they were believing that positive things will happen to them. They didn’t want to take responsibility and trust in their own abilities to create the desired change.
I would argue that this same “external force” gave them a unique purpose, talents, abilities, and drive, on top of the free will to go out and find a way to make the changes in the world that they want to see for the greater good. If you truly had faith that things in your life were going to get better, you’d immediately start taking the actions you thought would bring about those changes. Faith without action is not faith at all. Real faith leads to proactive efforts and actions towards constructive change, all the time.
By believing that your life circumstances will be improved by an external force, that requires nothing but positive expectation on your part makes you completely passive and discourages exerting your will, enduring the pain period, growing, and allowing your vision any chance of becoming a reality. This is the opposite of living your life’s purpose and doing what you were meant to do, becoming the person you were meant to be. It’s out of balance in that its very right-brained thinking.
There’s no way to gain favoritism or special treatment based upon your beliefs. We are all equals and no beliefs alone can change that. You’re given your gifts and the free will to do what you please with them. It comes down to whether or not you use what you were given, or let your talents go to waste. Have faith in yourself, in your ability, in that the world is a fair place where we are all confined equally by the same laws of nature. Believe in these gifts from that external force that gave you the free will to actively make your life, and the world a better place. You are not helpless and you were meant to fulfill your purpose by living a life. Not by hoping for one to happen on its own in the most ideal way you can think of.
If you have a friend who wants something in life, is it better to hand it to them, or to teach them how to obtain that thing for themselves? One way may be easier, but the other more beneficial. Like the old saying goes, you can give a man a fish and provide him a meal, or you can teach him to fish and he’ll be able to feed himself for life. Which do you think god, the creator, the universal intelligence, whatever word you want to use would prefer? Give you what you desire effortlessly, enabling you to go on without knowing how to make it happen for yourself, or teach you how to obtain it by learning and gaining a deeper understanding?
I have nothing against going to church or having faith in religious beliefs. The point I’ve attempted to address has to do with flawed logic and beliefs I’ve witnessed from my own experience that happened to occur at these places. Until the religious are clearly more successful and every lottery winner turns out to be someone who had positive expectations and did nothing other than buy a ticket of chance, I don’t believe that’s how our world works. My experience has shown me otherwise.
I’ve observed that your purpose, your dreams, and your desires come from your core; your spirit. From there, your mind, primed by confidence, faith, positive expectation, and will power comes up with a solution to make your dreams into a reality. Finally, your body is the physical vehicle set into motion to influence your reality and execute the solution you’ve come up with.
It’s that simple. Without that final step of taking some sort of action your dreams cannot come true on their own the vast majority of the time. Believe that you are enough. Empower yourself by knowing that you are more than capable of creating change. Think big and don’t hold back. Balance your determination with appreciation. Keep this simple formula together and over time witness your limitless potential enfold before you as your life becomes exactly what you dreamt it could be.by