Beliefnet
Letting Go with Guy Finley

Question: What is it that prevents us from knowing peace in times of uncertainty? How do we break through the barrier between us and true peace?

Answer: Things, people, places, conditions are what most of us pursue to help erase the ache of having no peace in our hearts. If we wish to take the next step in our spiritual development, then we must be willing to acknowledge that the pursuit of these forms, even their possession, has never brought us anything but a fleeting sense of fulfillment.

We have all tried sewing pieces of peace together, thinking through what we must do to rid ourselves of whatever nags at us. You know the dialogue one is ever having with oneself:

“Hopefully this career change will make things better; maybe going to the gym will get my love life going; once I make him understand my point of view. . . .” “As soon as” becomes the chant and the source of our confidence. We all know how this goes. The chattering is as endless as one’s fear of feeling empty. And the more of these “pieces of peace” we juggle, the more anxious we become, all the while hoping that life won’t break up what we would assemble. Even though this approach has proven itself fruitless, still we cling to the hope that next time things will be different. What we must see is that our lives cannot change until we do — from the inside out.

The task before us is not an easy one, and anyone who tells you differently lies; but we are not asked to make this journey without a guide. Before us goes the Light of Truth. It reveals the Way by opening our eyes to see among other truths, that the peace we seek is not a thing created by us. We learn that admission into its celestial kingdom is by mutual consent only, even though this peace agrees to no terms other than its own. It makes the rules, not us. Yet we are eventually made grateful for these unyielding laws, for whatever soul agrees to bend its will to these terms of eternal peace not only finds God’s peace revealed, but also that this providence has now become a permanent presence within his or her heart.

If we could only become quiet enough to listen anew, we would learn that peace is a gift given freely to each of us, right where we stand. But it is a gift given only when we give up our position that it is in our power to possess peace, as we would all other desires.

Allow your heart to remind you what the mind so easily forgets: there is a peace. There is a shelter. There is a timeless place in each of us that no darkness can shatter or dispel. Make it your one intention to spend your time there. Prefer its ever-present company to that of any promise of peace to come, and watch how your life grows happy and whole in stillness beyond compare.

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