I have found sometimes the help I give isn’t what is truly needed.
For instance, I often want to help others so much I try too hard and don’t always listen long enough before I come up with some kind of solution. I want to avoid the discomfort I feel for this person’s pain.
Sometimes I try to help others materially when that isn’t what is best for the situation. Again it may just be a quick answer to avoid my discomfort in seeing someone in need.
So what is the most helpful, supportive thing I can do for others?
I believe true support begins in the way I view them. Am I seeing them as needy? Am I worrying about their ability to move through whatever challenge they are facing?
That’s how souls grow—through challenges!
As I closely examine my motives for my words and actions I find that I sometimes have a limited view of others. I don’t always see them as capable and filled with the ability to meet whatever life presents to them.
When these judgments cloud my vision I am less than supportive and certainly not compassionate.
My desire is to see others as I wish them to see me, fully able to find the resources to grow through the challenges of life, as they are necessary for spiritual growth.
Challenges make us stronger and develop our confidence as we meet them with wisdom and deep compassion.
A great truth to remember is that the universe is always for us and never against us. It is here to help us grow and evolve.
Compassion includes knowing what our daily physical limits are and when we need to back off, rest, and find balance by remembering that the Spirit is always guiding us—that we are not meeting this alone—that we are always connected to that which is higher and greater.
Daily rituals help develop inner strength and wisdom to meet these adversities—for these are the circumstances that help us express our true authenticity, which our ego knows little about.
The ego just wants us to stay safe and as comfortable as possible. This “self” does not know that it is always safe, for it is connected to the All.
We are so much more than a little “self,” separate and alone.
We are the very Spirit of God—Universal energy—and can never lose our connection, for this is our true Essence.
None of us is meant to face life alone. The truth is we need each other in order to feel complete.
In the invisible world of Spirit we are all One, for there are no “separate” parts.
The universe (and that includes us) flows as One. “The One becoming many. The many becoming One,” as Teilhard de Chardin has said.
So how do we help each other and be supportive? Worry is not the way!
Each time we worry about a friend or loved one, let’s remember we’re really not being supportive, though the world will tell us we are.
The very word “worry” comes from a root word, to strangle. (Webster dictionary)
Will strangling help? I don’t think so.
There is another path. It always begins with prayer and shifting into something more compassionate.
We ask deeply what will help.
Here is a prayer that Thich Nhat Hanh suggests as we begin each day:
Waking up this morning I smile.
I have twenty-four hours to live.
I vow to live them deeply
And learn to look at the beings around me
with the eyes of compassion.
See others with the eyes of compassion. I believe this begins by seeing each person as the very image and likeness of God, able to move through this growing experience in grace.
And then deeply listen by becoming still and asking what the best support is that we can give.
And then give generously as we are guided.
May we live in the awareness of each person’s astounding beauty and grace—whether they are acting from their true Essence or not. May we begin from this great truth. It may help others to see it.