Pain brings us to a place where we wrestle with the true stuff of life.
Death, relational fracture, meaning, who I am, deep disappointments
(this is not the way I thought life would turn out!) all of these give
us transformational opportunities why?
Because we come to realize we have been on autopilot with some
assumptions…and those assumptions always determine how we understand
the self. The WHO AM I question.
What are some of the assumptions you have operated with over the years
that you have come to realize in your awareness were actually causing
some of your suffering or preventing you from experiencing full life?
Perissos life (abundant life of John 10.10)?
• One of my big assumptions – map your life by figuring out what you
are called to and then work hard to stay on the mapped terrain.
• If you obey God you will be blessed and life will be better and easier for it!
Recognition of our assumptions that inform how we form our identity
help us loosen control and dissolve the pain coming from those
Obedience brings blessing…I can’t tell you how many people I know that
have experienced deep pain over this issue because they came to realize
after years and years that they were disappointed with God because this
was the hidden assumption.
This goes a long way in us telling us stories about ourselves to
ourselves about what God and others think and value or not value in us.
2. Noetic Experiences…
Noetic comes from the Greek word nous that refers to a subjective
personal experiential sort of knowledge. It is direct experience
Not all transformative doorways are painful. 23 % say unpleasant. 51% very pleasant.
These would be moments we move beyond ordinary awareness to spiritual awareness which should be ordinary but isn’t.
Moments of profound awe…the sunset example comes to mind.
Wonder, transcendent bliss, these can be portals into deep last change that open us to a world that we didn’t know existed.
• Elijah had this on the side of a mountain
• Paul had this on the Damascus road.
• Peter James and John had this on the Mount of Transfiguration
I think what is especially interesting for my journey is I had a very
deep noetic experience bonefishing that put me on an awareness journey
I would have never been on otherwise, and 30 days later (almost to the
day) saw my marriage unravel and my wife filing for divorce)
Both portals of pain and noetic experiences hitting at the juncture of
having just left my church of 18 years to start into a new ministry
arena were catalytic in provoking a new transformational horizon for me.
Noetic experiences can also happen though as a part of protracted practice….
Ongoing meditation practice. Jesus’ prayer, only do what I see the father do.
What both of these experiences do is help us realize we have been
living in a personally storied circumscribed world. In other words the
world I am living in is much much smaller than the world I am currently
becoming aware of….my consciousness is expanding…my world is expanding,
my awareness is expanding.