As a very young child, without any influence from my parents, I intuitively and instinctively felt connected to this Divine Presence, an invisible friend who walked beside me. Gradually this connection dimmed as I absorbed the conditioned beliefs of the world. When I learned I was adopted, innermost feelings of abandonment festered as a core wound, and I began to look to the outside for my sense of worth and safety. Experiencing unhappiness with my adoptive family, at age 10, I insisted we start attending church, my attempt to reconnect with the Presence I once knew.
During college, the questions of who I am and why I am here, erupted, fanning a hunger for God and launching me on a spiritual quest. One evening, alone in my dorm room, I fervently prayed, asking for more of God’s Spirit. Suddenly, a charge of energy struck me like a lightning bolt, laying me to the floor, as rapturous joy burst my heart wide open. Laughing and crying out in undefinable words, strange languages, I knew the truth of being baptized in the Spirit.
From that day on the trajectory of my life changed forever. My connection to Presence rekindled, I redirected my focus inward to listen to the still small voice of Spirit. I began a practice that I continue to this day, of early morning meditation, contemplation, and prayer, guided by my teacher, the voice of Presence within me. This mystical fervor fueled my maternal years when I would rise in the predawn hours, long before our family of seven awoke, to spend an hour in communion with God.
At first, I experienced this voice as the voice of Jesus, leading me to confront and let go of fear based, judgmental beliefs within myself which were mirrored outside in the fundamentalist church I attended. Becoming freer inside, I moved on to churches that were less dogmatic, serving in various ministry roles.
One day I no longer could fit into the Christian container. Still perceiving God as separate from me, a powerful dream prompted me into a more in-depth inquiry of my sense of self. I faced my fear of being deceived if I moved beyond the confines of Christian beliefs. An epiphany revealed what I had known all along but simply forgot. I loved God, and I knew God loved me. There was nowhere I could go and not be in the love of God. Love was all there is, so what was I afraid of?
My world suddenly expanded, because my sense of self-expanded. I began to experience myself more from my essence, an observing Presence witnessing the conditioned patterns of my ego, struggling in limiting patterns of thought and lower vibrating emotions. I plunged deeper into this alchemical journey, feeling like I was a chemistry set, fine-tuning my vibration, letting go of fear and opening more fully to love. I loved myself back into the wholeness and perfection of Being I was all along.