The following is an excerpt from Sacred Psychology of Love: The Quest for Relationships That Unite Heart and Soul, by Marilyn C. Barrick, Ph.D
I remember as a teenager reading the book In His Steps, by Charles Sheldon. It was the moving story of a pastor and certain members of his congregation who decided that for one year they would walk in the footsteps of Jesus.
They would ask themselves, “What would Jesus do?” Only then would they take action. And no one would monitor anyone else’s conscience.
By the end of the year, the church and the lives of the congregation had been turned upside down and then right side up to the glory of God and the fulfillment of gifts and graces they would never have imagined possible. So wondrous was the presence of Jesus and the action of the Holy Spirit among them!
I had always tried to be very close to Jesus, so I decided to try this for myself. I remember how blissful it was, and how difficult it was!
Many times I would pray to Jesus and I would know exactly what Jesus would do—but I didn’t want to do it. So then I would have to pray to Jesus to help me want to do what he would do.
I think that was my first conscious surrender of some ego. And to my great relief, Jesus did answer my prayer. During that time, I certainly learned a lot about my ego and a lot about surrender.
Each time we surrender some of our human resistance and move forward on our spiritual path, we come a little bit closer to becoming who we really are.
As we continue to walk in the footsteps of the Master, we begin to step out of our human cocoon, the trappings of our human doings. We begin to reveal more and more of our divine identity until one day we may fly free as butterflies into the sunshine of the presence of our God.
Ultimately, as we transcend the human and become spiritually one in soul and Spirit, we may be graced to return to oneness in the cosmic ocean of divine love even as we preserve our unique individuality.
This is an excerpt from Sacred Psychology of Love: The Quest for Relationships That Unite Heart and Soul, by Marilyn C. Barrick, Ph.D.
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Dr. Marilyn C. Barrick (1932-2007) is the author of the Sacred Psychology series:
Sacred Psychology of Love
Sacred Psychology of Change
Dreams: Exploring the Secrets of Your Soul
Emotions: Transforming Anger, Fear and Pain
Soul Reflections: Many Lives, Many Journeys
A Spiritual Approach to Parenting: Secrets of Raising the 21st Century Child
Everything Is Energy: New Ways to Heal Your Body, Mind & Spirit.
She also co-authored Wanting to Live: Overcoming the Seduction of Suicide.