The Inner Path To Christ 14

The next step of the path is baptism

The emerging spirit in you will not take away all problems from your life.  In fact, having let go of your old certainties, your habitual rigidities and beliefs, things will emerge into your life that had been buried, held back by the iron bars of your own preconceptions.  They may be painful things, dark things you have harboured at some time.  Meeting them will be your part, your work, in transforming yourself and the world; for some of what you will meet is from the long past and is the burden you and the world carries.

But you will also release a wonder and beauty you could not have imagined. And along with this will arise wisdom, insights that throw light on things in a new way.

What was deeply buried within you is gradually emerging. The years of maturing have passed. What has been born has grown and become known in your everyday life in some way. This ‘Jesus’ has come from your opening to the Mystery, and it is taking its place in your affairs; for this to have taken place will have required much strength, or the development of much strength. To surrender, to open oneself to the Mystery is not an act of passive weakness. It means you have found strength enough to stand amidst your own swirling thoughts and emotions, your own doubts and fears, and remain open to what is unknown to you. That takes great perseverance and strength of purpose.

So it is this strength that brings you to baptism. John the Baptist, who through discipline makes straight the way of the Lord, represents this strength. In the New Testament the baptism is described as follows:

On the next day, he saw Jesus coming to him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who is preferred before me, for he was before me. (John 1:29)

‘I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.’ (Mark 1:8)

Now when all the people were baptised, it came to pass, that Jesus also was baptised – of John in Jordan – and praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven which said, ‘Thou art my beloved Son: in thee I am well pleased.’ (Luke 3:21-22).

Although we may have touched that higher Life through our prayer as Mary, it can only enter into our consciousness fragmentarily while we are still largely possessed by our mental, emotional and passionate life. Like the poem, we have to be ‘waiting the Word of the Master, watching the hidden Light; listening to catch His orders in the very midst of the fight; seeing His slightest signal across the heads of the throng; hearing His faintest whisper above earth’s loudest song.’

The fight is our inner turmoil, and earth’s song our sensual impacts. It needs discipline to remain open to God and yet not closed to them, and this is our task.

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