Sunday Wisdom: November 5 2017

Today’s Sunday Wisdom is about peace.

Empty your mind of all thoughts.
Let your heart be at peace.
Watch the turmoil of beings,
but contemplate their return.

Each separate being in the universe
returns to the common source.
Returning to the source is serenity.

If you don’t realize the source,
you stumble in confusion and sorrow.
When you realize where you come from,
you naturally become tolerant,
disinterested, amused,
kindhearted as a grandmother,
dignified as a king.

Immersed in the wonder of the Tao,
you can deal with whatever life brings you,
and when death comes, you are ready.

– Tao Te Ching: A New English Version

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

– Philippians 4:6-7 ESV

When under stress, peace can be achieved by emptying your mind of the racing thoughts. Understand your place in the world, that what troubles you is small in comparison to the massive expanse of Creation. Then take your troubles and place them in God’s hands.

Make a plan of action, how you can best solve the problems, but do not let your mind be consumed by it. Return to the “source”, empty your mind of the thoughts, pray for help with the problem, and rest your mind. Then with a calm head and relaxed mind, do what you can to most effectively solve the problem. Do not dwell on what you can’t do, do what you can and let Providence to the rest.

  • Jak

    I’m sitting here listening to my pastor and he’s discussing how a Christian should approach work. Regardless how badly a man is treated at work, he should approach it with an eagerness and sincerity.
    We work not to please our boss but because we are on a mission from God. Is making me introspect a bit.

    • Joseph Curwen

      You are texting from your church in the middle of the sermon?

      You are going to hell, sinner!!!

      • Jak

        Haha. Actually I’m on the church’s safety and security team, so I typically hang out in the lobby area and listen to the sermon from there.

        • cheeseburgercheeseburger

          I was about to say “security team-wtf??” and lo and behold 27 killed in a church today. I cant believe we need security in a church now

          • Jak

            Yep. We’ve actually had a few robberies at our church in the past, hence the creation of the security team. Our group leader is also interested in getting my input for training the security members to handle an armed attacker. I’m not necessarily the best person to train them, but I’m better than what they got unless they want to bring in a professional.

          • La’darell Luthor

            As someone who has been affiliated with several career criminals, I can confirm that Church parking lots are often some of the most desirable placing when it comes to breaking into cars.

          • Jak

            We monitor our entire church. The security team is tasked with not just keeping watch on the inside but also regularly monitoring the parking lot. I wouldn’t say we have the place locked down tight, yet, but we’re taking our responsibility seriously and taking steps to improve.

          • MCGOO

            They were a tiny church, almost all wiped out. They had a youtube channel, reminds me of a church we visited last summer.

            Youtu.be/MJaYgQJnvQA

            A prayer for them. I’ve been to churches like that. They’re very welcoming. They just didn’t catch the sumbooger. There’ll be a lot of consensus now that it’s okay for parishoners to be packing in a church.

        • Joseph Curwen

          What’s the security and safety team of a church? you prevent some muzzie blowing himself in the middle of the church shouting ‘aloha snackbar’?

          • Jak

            We haven’t covered that situation yet. More concerned about a gunman coming in to shoot the place up. That and just making sure things like theft of property is prevented.

          • Chip Baskets

            Ugh.
            Dann.
            ..
            Keep your eyes peeled and your head on a swivel.

          • Jak

            Always do.

          • Chip Baskets

            Geez.

      • Monsieur de Charette

        Not to mention him being protestant.

        • Jak

          Hey now!

          • Monsieur de Charette

            Couldn’t help it.

        • Joseph Curwen

          There is an old anecdote from the spanish civil war: a protestant missionary was giving a sermon to a group of Republicans and one of them exasperated said “we don’t even believe in the true Church, why should we believe in yours?”

          • There is a terrific book by Graham Green called Monsignor Quixote which is a modern telling of Don Quixote and deals very nicely with the strange relationship that Spaniards have with the church

          • Joseph Curwen

            Thanks for the suggestion. I know about it because I’m from spanish ancestry.

      • bem

        Right??!!?!? Simply ZERO decorum in these far-flung American protestant sects…..

    • KingEdward

      Another related facet of that point of view is that you are doing it for yourself. By putting yourself in a godly frame of mind and doing your best you are making yourself a better person. You are learning to do a good (or great) job under difficult circumstances. Of course, in the scenario of bad treatment….. you should take the first opportunity to GTFO…. and find a better job.

    • dckhead_con_artist

      Be safe , Churches are dangerous places these days ..

      • Jak

        We have a dozen known armed church members and probably quite a few more unknown that carry.

        • bem

          But if I get murdered I can leave early though, right?

          • Jak

            Physically yes, spiritually….

  • Jim Johnson

    Nice article. Peace of mind comes through faith. Today there was this guy who got up and shared his testimony. He has been out of work for a couple weeks, he goes to this fast food joint and while there a guy barges in, having a heart attack. He calls 911 and stays with him until the ambulance arrives. He then goes home to his wife and kids and realizes how well he has it. Has a strong family, even if he loses his house he still has what is most important. God, family, and integrity. The rest is just icing on the cake.

    • MCGOO

      That sounds precarious losing your house after two weeks unemployed. I would take it as a wake up call to get rid of the mortgage boogeyman asap.

      http://www.darktheatre.net/crack/images/grim.jpg

      The family must be completely on board with the father, not just in trying times but always. When the money stops, it’s lights out and candles. Every scraping counts and it’s time to bail water. I’ve known a few families that to some degree or another kept their comfort level and kept spending even after they took a financial hit. They were spending right up to the munite they had to move out, ordering pizzas and the works.

      Getting an entitled family to cut back and stick with the program can be like wrestling with a bear, especially if teenage daughters have to keep buying hair products and using hot water, and the wife does tug of war with the credit cards. She has to be on board, coughing up all credit cards and washing laundry in the kiddie pool out back using her feet with cold water and a squirt of dish soap. Roughing it can be fun with the right music. I once got the crew all stomping the laundry in the kiddie pool when the washer broke. It turned into a party when I cranked on the radio.

    • Marius Aetius Lucullus

      not sinking the slipper in her Jim, but, is there anything the church can do for this man to help him find employment?
      i thought that was one of the reasons people joined churches nowadays, for the community/family feel, that has been missing in actual communities/neighborhoods today.
      as MCGOO says, the mortgage boogeyman must be kept at bay.

      • Jim Johnson

        There is the church employment system. Classes and networking opportunities are there, jobs through Deseret Industries but from what I seen it is more of the low end type jobs. Still, it will keep a person from starving.

  • Inspector Callahan

    Not trying to be the devils advocate but you can never really “empty your mind”. What you can do however, is to acknowledge the thought (whether good or bad) and let them go, while gently direct your mind back to where you want it to be. Try to see your thought as clouds in the sky. By nature, they come and go.
    If you have time, try reading “Full- Catastrophe Living” by Jon Kabat-Zinn. His technique (Mindfulness meditation) is certainly worth to think about.

    • Jim Johnson

      If you try to empty your mind all that is left is the stay puft marshmallow man

      • cheeseburgercheeseburger

        NICE

    • I have never been able to completely empty my mind, but whenever I get extremely stressed, I empty my mind of the racing, frantic thoughts that are currently inhabiting it, replacing them with a prayer for peace and a quiet mind. So far the Lord has answered that prayer every time.

      • bem

        I find this to be very challenging – its like an old TV switching through the channels constantly. The good ol’ “Jesus Prayer” helps a bit to settle the static, then acknowledgements of blessings and good fortune (giving thanks), then well-wishing for others, and finally a petition for personal strength and clarity.
        I consider myself lucky if I can complete this sequence before it decomposes into an orgy of grievances and movie-quotes.
        During Divine Liturgy on Sunday there is piece called the ‘Cherubic Hymn’ which implores that congregants ‘put aside all earthly cares’ prior to partaking in communion. I generally skip communion because of a failure to achieve this state – bringing my brain before God in that condition would be like taking a dump in the Trevi fountain.

        • Jak

          I found a meditation app a few years ago that helped me with this. It walked you through the process and constantly reinforced the idea of whenever a stray thought enters your mind, acknowledge it and gently brush it to the side. If I find it, I’ll send it your way.

          • bem

            app? APP?!?!?!?!?

      • I’ve never am able to totally zen out either. I think it is why I like weight lifting so much, at least one of the big reasons. With that much physical output it is impossible to keep the background chatter in the ole brain box going.

        One thing I am trying to practice is the steam room. I find it hard to be in a room with nothing to read, no phone or computer, no one to chatter with just to sit there totally still. At first I would only make it 5 minutes before getting antsy. I am now up to 10 with my best being 15.

        It isn’t the same as having a calm and clear mind in general, but like anything else…practice helps.