Its not at all unusual to utter a prayer at times of great stress. Who amongst us has not offered up a quick one when push comes to shove? Facing a life limiting illness is often a time when we pause and reflect on what really matters in life, on what helps and on what keeps us going.
‘How /why does god let this happen?’ is a question I have heard often. The answer lies within our own belief system. You may well believe in God and you just as easily might think that this world is all we have. But I reckon that somewhere inside us all is a set of ideas of how we think the world works and the rules we should live by. At times of stress these beliefs are tested. Facing our own mortality often forces us to think about what comes after our time on this earth. Sorting out this conundrum can often lead to peace and acceptance.
So what does your spiritual life look like? Maybe you go to church/ the synagogue/ the chapel / the Mosque / a temple and pray to your own God. Maybe this gives you comfort, to know that a ‘higher being’ is watching over you. And maybe you know that your strength lies within you. Your spiritual life might be based on a mantra of being kind and looking after those you love and those you meet. You might delight in nature and all the beauty it has to offer. You might find strength in meditation and the practice of mindfulness.
What we are perhaps looking for is a sense of peace and wholeness and an idea of the purpose of our life. It is often at the time of a significant event that these themes come into sharp focus. The challenge is how to find and hold onto our spirituality.
It’s a great time to look at what matters and call on like minded people to help. If you have a particular religion then other members of the congregation might well provide support. Your family might share your beliefs and provide a great space to discuss what really matters. If you want certain things to happen then now is a good time to put them in place. If you want to live your life in a certain way now is a good time to make it happen. If you want to mediate, those around you can help you to find the time and space. If you want to pray – ask them to pray with you. If you need to go on a retreat – this is the time to book it. Explore what matters, give thanks and make plans. Delve deep – you never know what you might find!