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Spiritual Growth and Transformation Has a Price


Author M. Scott Peck wrote, “Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult—once we truly understand and accept it—then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.” When I first read Peck’s statement from his classic book, The Road Less Traveled, I was new to the New Thought/ Ancient Wisdom Teaching. I was gung-ho about the work and naively thought life from now on would be a breeze and without difficulty. So, I rejected Peck’s notion that life is difficult.


Over time, however, I understood what Peck meant — at least I had a new interpretation of his words. If we are to grow spiritually and progress in life, we will sometimes struggle. We will have hardship. There will be difficulties. Such experiences are part of the process of growth. These experiences are the last hefty price of admission to transformation.


The first is moving through the unknown. The second is dealing with judgment or rejection from others. This last price of admission for change is often a vast one and one most people don't like.


Myrtle Fillmore, the co-founder of Unity, comes to mind regarding the difficulty of change. She was diagnosed with tuberculosis during the time it was a fatal disease. She then heard a lecture by the spiritual teacher E.B. Weeks, who said, "You are a child of God. Therefore, you do not inherit sickness." Most people familiar with Myrtle's story know she became well through self-healing. But it only happened slowly and with lots of work.


Myrtle went through a process of over two years before she was free of tuberculosis. Every day she affirmed and visualized her healing. She forgave herself for believing she was less than a healthy child of God, and transformed her self-concept. It wasn't easy. It took a lot of work. But in the end, she had paid the price and was transformed by the renewing of her mind.


While we may not always like the process of change, it is often through the tough stuff that we develop character. In retrospect, we realize it is through the difficulties that the change process was meaningful and worthwhile. If it were easy, we wouldn't grow, learn, or ever feel genuinely alive, or give the result value.


Imagine how little we would value a college degree or certification for a skill if we were awarded the diploma or certificate on the first day we showed up. It's through the process or the difficulty of staying up late doing the work and making the sacrifices along the way that we fully appreciate the value of the accomplishment.


The difficulty of change is worthwhile. It makes us sharp. It helps us grow. It allows us to serve with greater empathy, stamina, and power.


In short, there is progress when we pay the price to get to the other side of change. The result is worth it. Keep moving.


Peace and Blessings,

James

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