Amazing Grace! how sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now I'm found, Was blind but now I see.
I sang this song as a child. I sing this song today. But now I understand this well-known hymn to be a testimony of healing. The two physical experiences referenced in the song are metaphors for journeys to mental, emotional and spiritual wellness. Just ask anyone who has made unwise choices and has the scars to prove it.
I used to think that the "sound that saved" was music. I now understand that the song of Grace is referring to "the Word". We hinder or forestall fulfillment of our dreams, hopes or purpose by failing to understand the true meaning of a word. The cause of unfulfillment may be the failure to empty out the garbage.
Let's examine the word empty.
I confess that reading or hearing this word without any context initially conjures up notions of lack, absence, nothingness. A description - the adjective. There is a another possibility, a call to action - the verb. I am investing resources with wise guides who are challenging me to empty my garbage in order to make room for the blessings of fulfillment. I share:
Why should we empty? in order to develop open receptivity to "the good" which will fulfill our ordained purpose.
What do we empty out? our temple--our bodies, hearts, and mind.
What do we empty? self-destructive behaviors and feelings: deceptions, denial, doubts, depression, anger, shame, blame, hatred, unforgiveness, and fear. Anything or anyone that hides, hurts, or hinders fulfillment.
Where do we empty? It depends. It may be the shredder, the therapist's couch, the city dump, the fireplace, a friend's shoulder, the altar. What is important is that the garbage gets put out.
How do we empty? it is a process: (a) identify the "stuff" in your life; (b) change thoughts and habits; (c) endure discomfort of the unfamiliar by practicing the presence of God, (d) celebrate discipline, and (e) believe; plant and nurture "mustard seed" faith.
When do we empty? Now is the moment to begin. The first step is to pray for mindfulness, discernment, courage, faith and gratitude.
Empty. Make room for the fulfillment of your dreams, hopes and purpose.