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The Greatest Love of All

April 18, 2012 13 Comments

“You can’t have a better tomorrow if you can’t stop thinking about yesterday”

The theme of this week for me has been forgiveness.  On Sunday, I started thinking about what to include in my forgiveness letter which is an assignment for my 7-week spiritual boot camp and I was feeling a little stuck.  On Monday, Oprah’s Life Class was focused on forgiveness (watch it here if you missed it – it was good!).  Then my lesson in the A Course in Miracles workbook on Tuesday was “God is the love with which I forgive”.  I was thinking about what my next entry would be focused on, but now it’s clear that it needs to be forgiveness.  One of the things that stood out in Tuesday’s lesson was:

After you have applied the idea to all those who have come to mind, tell yourself:

God is the Love in which I forgive myself.

Then devote the remainder of the practice period to adding related ideas such as:

God is the Love with which I love myself.

God is the Love in which I am blessed.

My hesitation in writing about this was based on my initial thought that I didn’t have anyone that I needed to forgive.  I participated in a life-transforming workshop years ago that helped me work through my unforgiveness issues and mend relationships that had been broken for years.  Since that time, I’ve made forgiveness a regular practice.  I had become complacent and a bit arrogant about my ability to forgive.  What I realized after reading my lesson for that particular day,  and after giving my homework assignment a thorough reading,  is that I had not forgiven myself!  This was a powerful breakthrough for me, and I’m only beginning to see the benefits (which have been great already).

I started to make a list of everything I never forgave myself for and, before I knew it, the list was 4 pages long (it’s a small journal, but still…it’s a lot of stuff!).  The list brought tears to my eyes because and I thought to myself “how can you see the God in you if you’re carrying all of these judgements about yourself?”…I knew I had to let all of this go and affirm for myself that I am not my mistakesDisclaimer: Before I go into sharing some of my list list, I’d like to for you to read this.  I trust that you will receive this information in love and that it will bless you or someone you know.  I am releasing all of the thoughts my ego is having in my head right now about people judging me because I know my truth…I know who I really am.  I also know that I am not the only one, and I pray that through my story others can be freed as well. 

With that said, on Monday, during Oprah’s life class, Tony Robbins led an exercise in which you were to close your eyes and remember a time when you were most grateful…he then led a brief guided meditation in which you fully experience how it felt in that moment and really allow that awareness to fill your heart and mind.  What came up for me was the experience of being forgiven by someone else – there is nothing like the feeling of being given a second chance at something!  As he led the meditation, I really felt the emotions I felt during those moments of forgiveness and it felt wonderful.  It reminded me that “my past mistakes do not define who I am in this moment” and I felt empowered to pay it forward.  What I realized in that moment was that the one person I forgot to pay forgiveness forward to all these years was myself.  I carried around guilt, shame, insecurity, defeat, etc., for so many things I did (or held back from doing) throughout my life.  I was ready to feel that same gratitude, but this time as a gift to myself.

On this day, I am finally forgiving myself.  I am experiencing that same profound feeling of gratefulness that I felt when I was forgiven for past mistakes.  I am releasing my thoughts of resentment, guilt, shame, blame, anger, bitterness, doubt,  judgement, insecurity etc., that I have directed toward myself based on my actions (or non-action) throughout my life.  Below is a list of some of the things that were on my 4-page forgiveness list.  I hope those of you that have not forgiven yourself for something you’ve done in the past will join me in releasing them.  Once we release our judgements about the past, we can be fully present to all that’s available to us in this moment.  I am grateful for finally being able to see and experience the divinity in me…all of these judgements were blocking my view of the “light”!

Kandace, I forgive you for…

  • lying to try to fit in
  • using intimate relationships to temporarily satisfy your need for love and attention (which can only be found via your connection with God)
  • getting pregnant in college and having to make the tough decision not to move forward with it
  • not speaking up regarding how you really feel in many situations throughout life
  • not giving your all
  • not trusting in God’s plan and trying to “make it happen” instead of “let it happen”
  • being jealous and insecure in many relationships
  • taking relationships for granted and not putting the time in to keep them flourishing
  • not sending thank you notes or fully expressing my gratitude – particularly for family members who have done so much for you
  • spending too much money on clothes, particularly in your 20s, to satisfy your need to appear to “have it all together” and to avoid anyone knowing what’s really going on inside of you
  • avoiding conflict
  • judging people and their actions
  • getting frustrated with those who were trying to help you along the way and only wanted the best for you (Mom & Dad especially)
  • gossiping about people just because that’s what the crowd was doing
  • not asking for help when you needed it
  • holding back on implementing some of your dreams due to fear
  • trying to be the perfect based on the world’s standard instead of recognizing your inner perfection as the image and likeness of God

Just looking over this list (and the other things on the list in my journal) has me completely blown by how much was bottled up inside of me.  No wonder I “acted out” in so many ways throughout my life (particularly in my teens and 20s)…and no wonder I experienced depression and anxiety…I felt terrible about myself and didn’t know any other way to pacify my need to feel better.  Now, I know better.  And, like Oprah always says, “when you know better, you do better”.  Thank God for another chance!

Keep shining!


P.S. Today’s blog title was inspired by the late Whitney Houston’s “The Greatest Love of All” which was one of my favorite songs as a little girl.  The lyrics still speak to me today…and reminds me of my passion for helping the next generation live authentic, fully expressed lives!

About the Author:

I used to live life shackled by fear, doubt, and worry. I put on a happy face while navigating my day-to-day duties, but I was emotionally drained, stressed, and unhappy. When I hit rock bottom, and was diagnosed with depression and anxiety, I was determined to live life differently. I knew there had to be another way. Out of that determination, and guidance from Spirit, the "Living in the Light" blog was born. It documents my spiritual journey out of the darkness and into the Light. After nine months of publicly sharing my journey, and consciously releasing my attachment to the ego, I experienced a powerful spiritual awakening. I went from living in fear, doubt, worry, and stress to complete inner peace. My greatest passion has become assisting others on their own journey to inner peace. My spiritual memoir, From Stress to Peace: An Intimate Journal on the Journey from Living in Darkness to Living in the Light, is available now on Amazon and Click the tabs at the top of the page to learn more about the From Stress to Peace 21-Day Challenge, Living in the Light Retreats, 1:1 sessions, and the Living in the Light Community - all of which are designed to support your journey to inner peace. I appreciate you taking the time to visit the blog and look forward to supporting you in any way I can!