"When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must then believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for you to stand upon, or you will be taught how to fly."—Patrick Overton
This is a reassuring statement by Patrick Overton, a nationally recognized community arts developer.
We've all had times when we've had to step into a new situation—by choice or necessity—without knowing exactly how it would unfold. Yet, as we gain a greater understanding of what it means to walk by faith and not by sight, we can act with positive expectancy. In other words, while we may not exactly know the new future, we can choose to believe it will unfold in a spiritually perfect way.
As I was reflecting on the notion of embracing the mystery of the future, I remembered when I had the call to become a Unity Minister. This calling was not something I would have imagined for my life; I would never have come up with such an idea on my own. But I answered the call and did what I needed for admission to Unity ministerial school. As the time approached for attending seminary, I had doubts. I questioned whether I could be a minister. I wondered if I was doing the right thing. Nevertheless, I released my house and sold or gave away the possessions I did not need.
The night I was scheduled to drive to Unity Village, I felt a sense of uncertainty and buyer's remorse. In that moment, I needed a sign to confirm whether what I was doing was right or, at least, not wacko.
But there was no turning back.
I went to a Chinese restaurant for my "last supper" experience. At the end of the meal, the waiter gave me my fortune cookie. The fortune said, "You have made the right choice, follow through." I did follow through and stepped into the unknown. The journey ended up being fabulous. I did what I loved and have had a soul growth and unfoldment beyond what I ever imagined.
We often want signs to show up before we move toward our inner urgings. But when we step into the mystery, we realize that signs often show up after we've made the decision. After we make the decision and move forward, what we need shows up: ideas, people, and resources.
We were born to embrace the mysteries that lie before us. As we do, we grow and discover latent talents and capabilities.
One of the keys to navigating the mysteries before us is to move with positive expectancy. We do this by waking up every day and expecting the "glad surprise." The glad surprise, a phrase coined by Howard Thurman, an influential American author, educator, theologian, and civil rights leader, is when we get to be amazed at how good it can get in our lives and how much good we can express through us.
We can condition ourselves to accept the glad surprise even when things seem darkest and our backs are against the proverbial wall. It is in these moments when the answer comes suddenly, like a stream of light.
We want to embrace the mystery with the expectation of a glad surprise. To welcome the unknown, we surrender to God's power, presence, and love.
Surrendering, of course, is not acquiescing or giving up. It is yielding to something more profound and higher within us. We see this from an expanded point of view. By embracing the mystery, we surrender to our next stage of evolution.
As you go on this great adventure called life, do it with the attitude of expecting a glad surprise. As you do, know there is something beyond what you can see rushing toward you. It wants to come forward and express itself through and as your life.
Lovingly, step on that solid ground. If there is no ground, know you will learn how to fly.
Peace and Blessings,