by Michael Ketterhagen
“Grace is constantly being showered on us by God because God loves us so much. Grace rains down on us all the time. We just are not aware of it because we have our umbrellas up.”
--Sandy Anderson, Himalayan Institute Yoga Teacher
Sandy’s words moved me deeply inside. Why don’t I know that God’s loving grace is pouring all over me all the time? It is my mind and what my mind says to itself that blocks this awareness. My mind pays very little attention to those boundless graces that “rain down” upon my life. My mind creates the umbrella, the barrier, to the persistent pouring down of God’s compassion and loving kindness.
I see this with others as well, especially when they complain about the struggles and challenges that present themselves to them during the day. People tell themselves that certain things should happen in their lives in order to know God’s love. Like me, they close themselves off to the warm sunlight, the refreshing water, the friendship of loved ones, the floating of the monarch from flower to flower, the songs and chorus of birds in the back yard, the vegetables from the gardens, the laughter of little children at play and all the other sensory blessings that fill the day.
All these are tremendous graces that “rain on” us constantly. All we need do is lower our umbrellas and become watered by God’s loving grace.
The Yoga Tradition says that all we need do is establish a regular pattern of spiritual practice, like meditation or pranayama or fire offerings. Those practices will help us lower our umbrellas. They will open our minds to all these wonderful blessings and graces.
We will then be washed daily in the grace of the divine. We will constantly be cleansed and nourished on our journey to the awareness of our union with the Divine Source of Life.