Want to attract more love in your life? First learn what it means to love yourself. From Justin Epstein’s talk “Give Yourself A Valentine”: “Accept Your Humanness”.
FULL VIDEO TEXT:(Video Transcript by Victoria Barkley)
Apostle Paul said, “I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want but I do the very thing I hate.”
Do you ever have a good intention and then, where does it go, out the window? “I’m going to be patient with him. I am not going to lose my temper. I am not going to be angry. I will be understanding… and then, it’s out the window.”
I have a friend who reads the Daily Word each day. One day, she read: I treat those I love with honor and respect. “I treat those I love with honor and respect.” She said within an hour she was fighting with her husband. (Chuckle) What are you going to do?
Well, for hundreds of years, in traditional Christianity, it was taught that people were innately depraved sinners and unworthy. And then, about a hundred years ago, the New Thought movement began and came to flourish. And the teaching was: That’s not who you are! You are not a depraved sinner, worm of the dust. You are created in the image of God! You have the kingdom within you! God is within you! That’s who you really are!
And that’s true and not only that but that’s been something that has been around longer than Christianity. That’s something in Hinduism. Hinduism teaches that the Brahman is the one presence and power. And within you is the Atman, which is the spark of the divine in you. You can find it way back, and it’s true.
Here is the problem: The problem is that we can’t jump from where we are right into being Christ-like, all the time. And too many people, because they believe that God is within them, turn a blind eye to their faults. They don’t see their humanness and divinity becomes an excuse. There needs to be a balance.
At this time in our evolution, we need to: Know that I am God and God is in me. I am an expression of God. Yes, this is the truth. And I also have this humanness that might be stuck…that there is also this humanness that needs to be integrated with my divinity. So, in a way, the traditional “I am a sinner,” is true; and so is “I am God in expression.” That’s the real truth. I am God in expression.
We also have self-centeredness, neediness, jealousy, insecurity, fears, resentments, irritability, getting offended, becoming critical and judgmental of ourselves and others—we also have all of that. The need is to learn how to be aware of that in ourselves and to let it be ok, to be able to be present to our humanness, to not be judgmental of our humanness, but to just be aware of it, to understand it, to listen to it.
I was talking to someone this morning, actually—who gave me a call before the 9:30 service. As I was listening, this person’s fears were coming up again, the same fear of abandonment. I asked, “Was there ever a time in your life as a child when you felt you were being abandoned?” And she said, “Yes, there actually was a time like that.” And this person explained it to me. I encouraged that person to be present to that little hurt child who was afraid of being abandoned, because that child was still there, reacting now as an adult.
You know we all have that little child within us whose needs did not get met. Because no parent can meet all of our needs, we still have that little child running the show sometimes, if we are honest with ourselves. And the need is to be present to that humanness…to be present, to nurture, to love, to be kind, to be gentle to that person; to be gentle and kind to our humanness.
We can’t just say. “I am spiritual. I shouldn’t be needy or I shouldn’t be afraid or angry. I am God is Within Me and Justin said I am spiritual and…” you know, we can’t do that. It doesn’t work like that. We have to nurture and love and be present to our humanness and when we do that, we can integrate it with our potential, with our divinity.
And then, at other times, we are so centered and all that, we can ask, “How can I serve? I want to know God more. Let me be more present to God, think about God.” And in another moment, we’re worried about something, or there is something else going on in us. Ok, be present, focus on it, listen to it, understand that part of you, love it and then remember the truth: “God is within me. I am an expression of God.”