This article is part of a five-part series on High Noon’s values:
Contributed by Andrew Love
Grace is the flow of love.
It is flowing at all times from God, but when we close our hearts we don’t receive it. When we block if from coming in, we also don’t have any to give to others.
We are meant to let love naturally flow from the heavens to the earth. Any blockages are strictly our responsibility to resolve. There are historical blockages/baggage that we inherit from our ancestry, cultural blockages, family blockages, etc. Regardless of what we have in us that prevents us from letting love naturally flow through us, it remains our responsibility to clear these impediments.
Consider love to be like the best radio wave imaginable. When we are in tune with it, the most wonderful music is transmuted and we become captivated by what we hear. The transmission is perfect, but we as human receivers often have issues being on the right station and we don’t experience the love frequency with much clarity.
God’s love is a force that is constantly surrounding us. Grace is what allows us to plug into that force. It’s what brings us back to the right frequency. We are the ones that close our hearts. We are the ones that torture ourselves by reliving the past past mistakes. We are the ones that judge others and stop the flow of love and grace allows that flow to return.
There are two types of grace that High Noon we focuses on. One is receiving and the other is giving.
When you think about it, is actually impossible to give grace in any meaningful way unless you’ve experienced grace yourself. The reason is that if somebody is struggling to love themselves, they close themselves off to experiencing their true value. As the saying goes “You can’t give what you don’t have”. Which means that the love you give to others comes from your heart, but if your heart is empty, then there is nothing really you can offer other than a very limited expression of God’s love.
Our love will always have limitations. There will always be someone that challenges your ability to accept, support, revere, but plugging into God’s Grace you will have the power to transcend the barriers of your heart. Our victory over our love limitations allow us to offer others the opportunity to the unconditional love we were meant to feel as a child. That is something that is far beyond any personal individual’s capabilities because the love which transcends is bigger than any of us.
It is fundamentally important to first learn how to receive grace in order to freely offer it to others. We must know grace, feel it, steep ourselves in it, become accustomed to its presence. When grace becomes our default, then we will be the types of people who are total forces of good for our Heavenly Parent.
Many thoughtful and intelligent people struggle with the concept of grace because we feel that if we’ve made a mistake, we deserve to be tortured. They feel we deserve to experience pain from mistakes. That is how we feel about ourselves most often and that is how society also functions.
If somebody causes us pain, they must experience at least an equivalent amount of pain as well. This is a concept that is extolled in the Old Testament. An ‘Eye for an Eye’ and ‘Ear for an ear’ a ‘Tooth for a tooth’, a ‘Face for a face’… You hurt me, I hurt you. This is a very primitive way of living.
Jesus gave us an upgrade of love by introducing the concept of grace. He exemplified this model by offering forgiveness to all that he encountered. Though the gates of grace have been open for over 2000 years, to this day people struggle to walk through.
Grace is available to us all day, every day. But it is something that we don’t make space for in our day to day life.
We most often live trapped in by our lower instincts and primitive brain. We relive past mistakes, we repeatedly experience old pain, and we focus on all of the possible negatives that may arise due to our suffering.
This is especially for idealists.
When we hold an ideal so deep in our hearts, we can become very judgmental of anything that stands in the way of that ideal. If we fail to live up to this ideal, it is easy to end up in a miserable state. When others hurt our ideal, it’s very familiar territory for us to want them to suffer dearly for their transgressions. For instance, when somebody insults God, we want them to pay the consequences of their disbelief. When somebody hurts our family, we want them to pay a price.
But What if we see through the lens that there are only two ways of functioning: We are either living in a place of love or pain. All fears, all doubts, all hatred, all disconnection, all divisions and skepticism come from a place of pain.
Then How could somebody who caused pain be given pain as a price to pay? What purpose will this serve? That is the human version of ‘justice’. We feel that if the person who perpetuates suffering receives more suffering, things will even out somehow. Nothing is ever resolved in this place of pain, it only prolongs suffering for everyone.
It is only love that can resolve pain.
It is only love that can bring us back to our natural state, which is love.
Just as there is no substitute for oxygen, which fuels our physical body, love fuels our soul.
Pain can’t resolve fear.
Fear can’t resolve doubt.
Judgment can’t resolve anything.
It is the moment when we decide to forgive those who won’t forgive themselves that healing takes place. It is allowing somebody the opportunity to experience forgiveness when all they can do is despise themselves that will be their avenue back towards liberation.
Forgiveness from our minds and our own hearts will never be sufficient enough to resolve the conflict within the deepest place in us.
When they feel deep in their bones that God forgives them—that is when the shackles of their self loathing will be cut and when somebody can make a seismic shift towards hope.
It is St Paul in the Bible, who went from being a killer to being a birth giver. He gave life to Christianity as we know it. We owe a great debt of gratitude to him. But it was not an intellectual decision for him to go from being a murder of Christians to becoming a Christian himself. He was by being struck by such a massive stroke of God’s grace that he finally fell off his high horse.
Think about how many such people are living in society today—trapped underneath a mountain of their self lamenting, unable to breathe the air of grace.
Imagine for a moment that you were able to offer someone in such a situation the keys which would unlock the chains that connect them to their painful past? Most don’t believe they have that power, but we all do—ALL THE TIME.
That’s why as an idealist, it is fundamentally important that we stay on top of experiencing grace on a daily and even hourly basis. Only then will we keep grace flowing from the heavens to the earth.
If your mouth is speaking but your heart is not connected, then you have no power. The electric connection between our hearts and God’s heart gives us the weight of the cosmos and we can alter the destiny of the people we meet when we speak from such a place.
In order to experience Grace, we first need to discover where we’re holding ourselves prisoner, where we’re holding ourselves prisoners for the misgivings of the past.
When we have the self awareness to understand our mistakes, the humility to seek forgiveness, and the tenacity to allow the space for grace to occur, we are becoming antennas which will surely attract the frequency of grace.
Spiritual forgiveness is something that we can offer everybody when we are in a state of forgiveness. So, the first stage is to find yourself in that state. By being forgiven ourselves, we will radiate grace and naturally offer it to those we know.
At the end of the day, our heavenly parent wants us to be fully formed as efficient and effective vessels of love. We are destined to become fully mature, fully developed as loving, creative, powerful beings.
An opposing force conversely desires us to shrivel up, and become fragmented, powerless beings who look for validation in the world around us rather than from the source of life and love itself. When we seek growth and recovery from the material world, we will always end up a slave to a weak, fearful need for being accepted not for who we are, but who we want others to perceive us as. To be humanistic with our love is to WISH others well, but with a fundamental inability to transform their eternal souls because we get in the way of the natural flow of grace.
As much as we would like to tell other people to stop feeling sad or to merely ‘get over it’, they won’t be able to unless they feel a force more powerful pulling them away from their suffering, than that of what enslaves them.
We have that power.
We can save lives and alter the destinies of anyone we come into contact with.
We can make heaven a reality on this earth—but only when we get out of the way and let love flow through us as GRACE.