How do you develop trust in something you cannot see, touch, or feel? In recovery groups around the world, the idea of trusting in a higher power is heavily promoted. For many people, this can be a huge stumbling block. Let’s now examine what reliance on a higher power can mean.
First off, if you struggle with the concept of any type of a higher power, or God, it is important to recognize that you are not alone. Nearly everyone who tries to find faith has difficulty for a number of reasons. Reliance on a higher power is different for everyone. This is very much an individual process. It is, in some respects, a journey of self-discovery. There is no definite time-frame for you to establish your own faith or beliefs.
This post is geared for those of you who already have some sort of belief in a higher power but may have difficult trusting upon it. If you don’t have a belief already, you’ll have to seek out another avenue to develop one.
How do we gain more reliance on a higher power?
I won’t profess to offer answers to age old mysteries. I will, however, provide my own experience as it pertains to this topic. It is not right or wrong: it is just my experience. I will not cram any religious beliefs down anyone’s throat, so have no fear that I’m going to lecture.
I was brought up with a somewhat-religious background. As a kid, I attended a Methodist church and was forced to attend Sunday School. Thus, I was told all about Jesus, the 12 apostles, and a Christian God. This provided a good base for developing a personal higher power in time and for learning about prayer. Whether or not I still believe in this faith of my youth is honestly only my concern. That is what makes reliance on a higher power so unique to us all: my journey is my own. You will find your own journey if you try.
Now, I used this as my higher power and prayed fairly consistently. I’m not sure if I prayed rightly or not, but I at least made the effort. That would be my advice for anyone struggling: make the effort. Whatever higher power you may believe in, at least give prayer a solid try. You can incorporate any other religious based practices you want as well. You may have a faith you already like, and if so, why stray from it? If you aren’t sure what to believe in, or what to do, ask around. If you attended various different churches of other faiths, it certainly won’t cause you any harm.
Accepting Reliance on a Higher Power
The issue I had with reliance on a higher power became one of trust. My prayers and wishes didn’t feel like they were being answered. As it turns out, life isn’t about getting what you want. However, in my egotistical mind, it was. I wanted things my way. I now see I am lucky they didn’t end up the way I wanted, or it would have been a horrible catastrophe. This lesson was not easy to learn, however. I went through phases where I alternately praised or hated my higher power. This inner conflict was based upon selfish needs.
I finally had to stop struggling with wanting things to all go my own way to be able to really rely on my higher power. It wasn’t until I felt defeated, and was facing a variety of problems, that I was able to say “Okay higher power, you gotta do this because I can’t.” I was basically forced to ask for help because I didn’t know what else to do.
That may sound terrible, but as things turned out, I haven’t been led astray. With reliance in a higher power, I am actually more freed to live a meaningful life. I’m confident that anyone else can develop the same degree of trust if they honestly want to find it.