Meditation was always a foreign concept to me. A supernatural mind game I wanted no part of. Truth is, I knew nothing! Yoga and meditation were things other people did. What people? I have no idea – happy people, maybe? Free spirits who could afford to spend hours on end contemplating life, while the rest of us sacrificed ourselves for the greater good. I really have no idea what I imagined yoga and meditation to be. I was so removed from anything spiritual, God or otherwise, that I never considered the benefits of mindfulness. I never understood the reflexive consequences of time spent in the now.
Beautiful moments of reverie encompassed in moments of silence and solitude. The funny thing is, I can’t remember what spurred me to finally give it a go. I had shied away from trying any form of meditation, for fear of failing. I hadn’t done enough research. I had nowhere quiet to practice. I just couldn’t do it! And then one day I did. It was like God pushed me out of the planning stages, and opened my eyes. There is more than one way to meditate, and we all have to start somewhere. I found my muse on YouTube.
I honestly have no idea how or why exactly, but I stumbled across guided meditation. Something I hadn’t come across in all my prior research and recommendations, but there it was – Surrender Meditation by Jason Stephenson. First, let me just say, he has an accent to die for! The kind of voice that eases your pain and washes away all your worries. God’s a genius! It’s no accident I found this voice, and this specific mediation. No. I was meant to experience the wonder of meditation, at this time, and in this way.
See, I’m a bit jumpy. I scare easily, and it’s not pretty. First, let’s address how tone controls my anxiety. An angry tone, one full of rage, the guttural growl – it terrifies me. The same can be said of the tone of disgust. Sadly, I’ve heard these tones in myself – a learned dialogue. The point is, I’m so in touch with people’s negative energy, I can never relax. No matter how hard I try, I am always on edge – tense. So, the sound of a soft, gentle guiding voice, is a Godsend.
A voice that erases the incessant chatter of weary wondering. A tone that comforts the dark recesses of the mind. A gift in itself, but then there’s the music – new age – something my Father introduced me to years ago. Oh, I could write about what my Father taught me so long ago. Lessons I ignored for decades. It’s funny how we often see the gifts behind our pain. But anyway, the music… beautiful symphonies of pianos, strings, and so much more. Differing melodies keyed to the need; diving into the senses – filling the void of nonsense with exquisite beauty.
I’m no expert. I’m not even close to being able to sit in a room and meditate in silence. Though it is a goal. I remember how annoyed it used to make me to meditate the last 10 minutes of yoga class. My mind buzzing with how painful it was to lie still – physically and mentally. Since discovering guided meditation, I’ve actually found myself in moments of silence and solitude, and it was wonderous. But for now, I embrace the gift of guided meditation.
Enjoying the moments of sweet escape and quiet peace. Some days I’m guided to wherever Jason’s voice takes me; forests, temples, and ancient ruins – all in glorious splendor. On other days, I find myself bathing in the darkness of my mind, unable to traverse the course Jason has set, but happy just the same. Tickled to be free of the monkey chatter – happily awash in the calm of nothingness.
Of course, there are days when I cannot get out of my mind, but commit to sitting still anyway. My favorite days, may be the ones in which meditative trance is somehow morphed into sawing logs. Lying here in my extra-wide recliner, passed out and startling myself with my snores – I giggle! A sweet gift of imperfection – a knowing surrender. But the best days are the days like today, when I touch on something I never expected. A moment. A feeling.
Today, I found myself standing alongside the ocean – waves crashing and sun shining. There I stood, clear as day, and I smiled. I prayed for this. I needed to see the wonder of the ocean, to feel the fullness of God’s embracing arms. For a moment I feared losing sight of this; I worried I might blink and wash it away. But I didn’t. I leaned into the wonder of the moment, and thanked Jesus for all that He is.
And to my surprise, God responded –
“You spend too much time mourning the endings of life. You should be celebrating beginnings.”