The Exquisite Necessity

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
Anaïs Nin

The surfer riding the crest of the wave knows it. The doctor in surgery and the soldier in battle trust it. The mountain climber and Olympic athlete tap into it. The opera singer in a once-in-a-lifetime performance and the artist who rides the wings of inspiration feel it. It is the moment when something within, something we may not have even known existed, awakens in us. It is the hidden potential coming to the surface to meet the challenge, bringing all our scattered forces together into one harmonious point of focus. Instinct and intuition wed with experience to meet the exquisite necessity that demands our attention and calls us to awaken the latent powers within.

It is often the “impossible” challenge that brings us to this state of heightened awareness. A mountain must be moved by a faith that is the size of a mustard seed. It does not matter how you came to this place. It is a date with destiny, the reason you were born. If you don’t pass the test this time, it will come around again in another form; or you will spend the rest of your life running, hiding, and avoiding it. It is the place where you consistently feel your heart tempted to fail within; the thing you think you cannot ever do. And it is the place where your heart, in a split second, leaps to meet the challenge. It is the place where the energies of resistance intersect with a release into a more powerful and benign flow. The greatness hidden within overcomes your weakness, not by force, but through a surrender to a Power that is greater than the sum of all your fears and doubts, all the challenges and problems that life may throw your way. Necessity becomes the mother of your invention, calling forth that within you that knows what to do and how to do it. 

Athletes and artists hone their skills through practice, preparing for such a moment through years of study and growth. It takes years of discipline in meditation to learn the deep sense of stillness and awakened awareness that knows a higher truth. But awareness can also come upon you in an emergency or crisis, revealing that everything you have experienced up to now has been preparing you for this moment. And in this moment it is now no longer just you, the small self who whines and throws tantrums or whimpers and cowers and gives in to defeat, caving under the pressure and crawling away in shame. It is the higher Self in you, partnering with God, the Greater Integrity, to access powers you never knew existed. Yet when the moment of truth arrives, you realize this was what you were meant to be all along. It is an inner evolution coming to fruition in the next stage of your spiritual journey. It is your quantum leap into a greater reality.

I believe we are all in the midst of making this quantum leap. The problems we face may be of our own making, products of a vision too small and too limited for the larger lives we were meant to lead. We may have almost destroyed our own lives in the process, wasting the riches of an inheritance we never appreciated. We see this in the environmental crisis, economic chaos, and violence of our times. Now is the time for the greatness within to rise to meet the challenge. 

Know that today there is that within you that is like an athlete ready to run the race, a courageous one who is willing to rise to the occasion. It is not you alone against the world any longer, it is you and God together discovering a deeper harmony, a more resonant truth at the core of your being, taking all disharmonies and tuning them to a higher harmonic. 

Whatever challenges you face, whatever situation you are in, listen to that still small voice within, that sense of latent potential and possibility that is like a tiny flame in a dark cavern. That flame is so powerful it can light the darkness and show you the way out of your dilemma. Trust it. Believe in it. It is God within, the spark of creativity that has always been with you, even in the darkest times of your life. 

The dire necessity, the crisis, the challenge, is an exquisitely formed instrument of God’s love. It is your unique challenge, offering you a choice. Take the next step of faith. Put aside your doubts and fears. Trust that something within is ready to rise to any occasion. A greater consciousness is being born in you, and the exquisite necessity is the birth pang that heralds the arrival of a new and better life. You are greater than you yet know. It is your moment to discover that truth. 

Affirmative prayer
I live my life as a daring adventure. I follow my intuition and trust that God’s love leads me to a marvelous destiny. Like a toddler learning to walk, or a musician learning to play, I am willing to practice, to make mistakes and learn from them, and to celebrate my achievements. I forgive myself and forgive others, blessing all. We were all doing the best we could with what we knew at the time and now we are learning to know and do better. Love calls me and I must answer. In my willingness to risk and dare and dream, I heal not only myself, but the world. Thank you God that you are at the heart of the mystery I pursue. 

In order to be a realist, you must believe in miracles.
David Ben-Gurion

Every real creation of art is independent, more powerful than the artist himself, and returns to the divine through its manifestation. It is one with man only in this, that it bears testimony to the mediation of the divine within him.
Ludwig von Beethoven

There is a soul force in the universe which, if we permit it, will flow through us and produce miraculous results.
Mahatma Gandhi

The whole thing boils down to giving ourselves in prayer a chance to realize that we have what we seek. We don’t have to rush after it. It is there all the time, and if we give it time, it will make itself known to us.
Thomas Merton

Each time something difficult and challenging has happened to me it has marked the beginning of a new era in my life.
Kimberly Kirberger

The only way to be who you want to be is by being what you haven’t yet been.
Sally Edwards

I am always doing that which I cannot do in order that I may learn how to do it.
Pablo Picasso

Much of your pain is self chosen. It is the bitter potion by which the physician within heals your sick self.
Kahlil Gibran

The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.

Our deepest fears are like dragons guarding our deepest treasure.
Rainer Maria Rilke

When danger approaches, sing to it.
Arab proverb

Faith is the bird that sings when the dawn is dark.
Rabindranath Tagore

If not now, when?
Martin Buber

Creative Responses in Chaotic Times

You must become a chaos before giving birth to a shining star.
Friedrich Nietzsche

If you are like me, you may be seeing old life patterns fall apart and fall away. Sometimes the loss feels overwhelming. But lately I’ve begun to see that the chaos is actually a birthing process. These birth pangs are painful and can feel frightening. I choose to believe they are part of a new life I’ve been gestating for a long time. 

There is a divine wisdom and timing at work in all of our lives. Today’s crisis can be an opportunity for great healing and rebuilding in our lives. It is a chance to take another look at our limited thinking and toxic choices. It is also a season for preparing the space for something new and better to enter our lives. It is up to us to decide if we will choose to view our troubles and losses from a higher perspective. 

Human troubles cannot trump spiritual realities. We all carry within us inner greatness and potential. It is our birthright as human beings in God’s complex creation. We are called to be co-creators with God. There is a deep wisdom and flow of energy working in, through, and for us as grace unfolding. Times of stress and crisis can be great catalysts for growth, forcing us to make needed changes. 

The older I get the more I realize that all things must change and there is no holding back the tides of change. I can either resist change or allow the change to transform my life in positive ways. It is my choice. When I resist change I lose the fight every time. Change comes whether I want it to or not. It is easier for God to move me into healing and hope when I am flexible and open. I can move with the flow of change and see where it leads. 

These times of crisis and turmoil can feel overwhelming. But a choice to see this from a higher perspective opens the door to new and better ways of approaching our lives. Sometimes it takes a shake-up to wake us up. We can be willing to release that which no longer serves us and open our minds to new ideas. We can learn to see our troubles less as problems to be solved and more as challenges calling us to grow and evolve. 

It is amazing how a even a tragedy or “fall from grace” can be the door to something wonderful that could never have been if our hearts had not been opened by loss. It is the nature of the Universe to be for us, not against us. Sometimes this is difficult to see in troubled times. One of the strange paradoxes Jesus talked about was that you would have to “lose your life to save it.” We’ve all been losing our lives lately, but the demolition and chaos are the beginnings of the birth of stars, “saving” us in ways that have the potential to create greater joy and healing and abundance for the whole earth.

Every act of creation is first of all an act of destruction.
Pablo Picasso

The world is not to be put in order, the world is order incarnate. It is for us to put ourselves in unison with this order.
Henry Miller

Like water, the sage should wait for the moment to ripen and be right; water, you know, never fights. It flows around.
Tao Te Ching

Affirmation: As I open to change I see all the pieces of my life move into new and happier and more prosperous patterns of grace. I trust that these crises I am experiencing are actually the birth pangs of the new life, creating abundance and joy in unexpected and wonderful ways.

I was thrilled to hear from Diana Wimber, a friend who has walked through deep waters in the past year. She and her husband are celebrating a special anniversary. She says, "Today is Paul’s one-year anniversary since his surgery. In all the CT scans and endoscopies since his surgery they’ve not found any evidence of disease. We are so thankful to God, because though Paul had great doctors, we know WHO is preserving his life." May they celebrate many more years of health, happiness, and prosperity together!


  1. March 23, 2009 10:58 PM CDT Edit

    I am so grateful to Candy that the wisdom she has gained is shared with others. While going through a personal "crisis" aka opportunity to embrace change I happened upon The Art of Encouragement. I was inspired to buy it. For the following 30 days it became a life-line. Candy gave me a most-needed hug although she is a thousand miles away. I recently lent The Art of Encouragement to a friend who was in need of it. When I handed to her I knew I would purchase another copy. That is what I was doing tonight--looking where I could buy it. And I found this blog--it is manna from heaven. I am ready and excited to utilize the affirmation recommended here. May the healing continue. Thanks for blessing me (and now my friend) Candy.

    - FeelingResurrected

  2. March 28, 2009 11:46 AM CDT

    Candy, this is beautiful. Thank you. I am blessed by your words. Reading them I feel as if I'm in your presence and I feel such Grace. Namaste

    - www.LeisaHammett.Com