How to give Yourself to God?
The Too Long; Didn’t Read…
TL;DR In this inSight Letter, we explore the search for love and approval in the world and why it is ultimately an impossible and exhausting quest. Instead, see the importance of giving yourself to something real, true, and sincere – a journey of coming home to the truth of what you are. This is the essence of “giving yourself to God.” Furthermore, don’t get lost in spiritual hyperbole. There is massive social confusion around spiritual and religious language, where spiritual phrases are easily misunderstood; when, really, they are pointing to something very simple and practical.
It's a journey, not a destination, and my job is to hold space for those ready to embark on this path.
The inspiration for this insight letter comes from a beautiful Zoom session I had. We discussed a genuine fear of enjoying one's life; like, it doesn't seem okay to follow one's heart.
Rather, there appears to be a requirement to live a life that looks like everyone else's; a reality where we do work we don't enjoy, where we are uninvolved in the things we're passionate about, and where we are disconnected from a path that feels authentic and deeply purposeful.
In essence, we feel our lives are meant to serve someone else’s vision, someone else’s agenda, and someone else’s constant demands.
Our time together in this session brought us to a place of seeing beyond this fearful noise. We recognized that what life wants for you, what God wants for you, is intimately intertwined with the sincerity of your heart's deepest longing.
The Impossible Search
The phrase “to give yourself to God,” isn’t about abandoning all your desires and doing what you think you should do. Often, what we “think” we should do, what we “think” is the right versus wrong thing, is really just a fearful conditioning.
We can assume the “right” thing is what we’ve been told is the right thing. Furthermore, it’s not uncommon to think that the “right thing” comes from an external authority, and who we are is only accepted and loved if that external authority approves of how we move in this life.
This dilemma can be found in our search for approval in the world, whether in the eyes of parents, social groups, communities, governments, or our country. There are so many ways to seek such approval, all while abandoning ourselves, our values, and our deepest sincerity out of fear of being rejected by others in the world.
This search is really chasing after love. It's looking to find our worth and value in the eyes of others.
It's worth noting a profound twist in this search, where we see why the search for such love and approval outside yourself is an absolute impossibility.
First, let's recognize something important. In our search for love and approval, we are searching for real love and real approval; we are searching for something that's real.
We don't want fake love or fake approval. We don't want imaginary love and imaginary approval because then it wouldn't really be love and approval. Agreed? You want the real thing.
The twist here is that, as we search for love and approval in the world (from others), without even realizing it, we will only find unreal versions of love and approval.
Please allow me to explain… (or at least attempt to).
Everything you see in the world, in other people, in circumstances, is to ultimately see your imagination of those things. The world “out there” exists in the mind. The world you see is to see your imagination.
When you look at another person, what you (predominantly) see is your imagination of that person. What you hear that person say is your interpretation of their words, which is a product of your mind.
We “imagine” that what we are hearing (interpreting) is coming from them, but really… what we are “hearing” is our interpretation; which is also to say, “what we think their words mean.”
When we go through an experience or circumstance, what we experience is the meaning we give to that circumstance. The reality of our experience is not defined by the shapes and patterns of the outside world; our reality of that experience is determined by the assumptions, meanings, and interpretations presented by the mind.
The illusion, the twist, is that it only looks like you're experiencing something that you're separate from. But what you are really experiencing is the mind's creation, which is something you are not separate from.
This is the innocent misunderstanding of experience, the hypnosis of sorts that humans are under; the assumption that they are separate from what they see/experience.
Coming Home to God
It's a cute spiritual phrase, “coming home to God.” And as with all cute spiritual phrases, we can entirely miss the reality of what they point to.
All spiritual language, and even religious scriptures, are attempting to put words to something that cannot actually be spoken. Why? Because, again, what you ultimately hear is your interpretation of those words.
The spiritual pointer is trying to get you to look beyond the mind's content, beyond the dream world, and make contact with something that's actually real and true; outside the realm of imagination.
“Coming Home to God” is simply coming home to what is real and true. In a beautiful way, it is recognizing the absolute futility of trying to find something real in the mind (in the imagined world) and surrendering that impossible quest; that seeking that goes nowhere – real.
Obviously, this is the doorway to both meditation and prayer, as it invites the surrender of mental content and abiding in a presence before all thought, fully giving yourself to that presence. This presence is where God/Truth is discovered and remembered.
Giving Yourself to God
Give yourself to something real, something true, something authentic, and sincere. This is the essence of “giving yourself to God.”
Our search for something real, like real love and real approval, will not be found in the unreal world of imagination. It's not going to be found in your ideas about other people, or even in the ideal circumstances you hope to find yourself in.
The reality of what you're searching for can only be found within the deepest sincerity of your precious heart.
Giving yourself to God is the same as saying… to finally give yourself back to yourself; to finally honor the sincerity of what you are; to finally give yourself the love and approval you crave, rather than asking the imaginary world to give it to you.
You see, my friend, just as it has been told throughout all spiritual traditions, we are invited to see that you and God are one. This is the same expression as “being a child of God.”
Somewhere within you is a sincerity of desire that wants to celebrate this miracle called life and being human. Somewhere within you is a love (God's love) that would like to flow through you and be shared with all parts of God's creation.
In other words, something deep within desires to worship Life and what’s true. And, again, this is the same as saying “to worship God.”
It’s a Journey, Not a Destination
There isn’t some final moment where this happens, and we are done with “giving ourselves to God.”
No, it's an ever-evolving journey, an eternal growth opportunity to which we devote ourselves. This devotion becomes stronger and clearer with each step we take.
The beauty of this is that life itself, the whole dance of being human, is designed to serve this fundamental purpose. Whether we see it or not, the entire thing, for the human experience, is an opportunity to develop our awareness and expand into a deeper union with the truth of life (God).
Here, in this space of remembrance, to remember what is actually real and true, you stumble upon the greatest prize; the only “real” prize. The prize of coming home to the truth of what you are; the prize of… coming home to the Heart of God.
One of my jobs is holding space for people who are ready to go on this journey and helping them navigate the many fears and illusions they will face along the way. For those who resonate with my flavor of sharing, the one-on-one support I offer is a beautiful opportunity to be held, guided, and compassionately educated as you travel your unique life journey.
The value, of course, is not to spin your wheels trying to figure out what's going on or what you should do. Instead, we can look together and gently unravel the confusion, discovering the real-life opportunity to allow more love to flow.
Do you want to be held in such a space? If so, let's explore that possibility.
Watch the replay here: