Perhaps you are intrigued by the idea of abiding in the “I Am presence but remain burdened by the story of “me”–the running mental commentary that continuously dogs your trail. Remember that the Way, the Truth, and the Life is not what you think. Rather, it is an intuitive realization that is both deeper and higher than the mind-made sense of self that you normally (mis)take yourself to be. Learn to distinguish between the various trains of thought that occupy your mind and the “aware presence” (or “alert stillness”) in which they both arise and disappear. Learn to feel the “I Am” Presence in the spacious awareness that is prior to thought–in the stillness between the out-breath and in-breath, for example, or in the silence between each heartbeat. Realize that you are that spacious awareness! And whenever you have opportunity, simply notice the light of the world — the Divine light in which we see light (cf. Psalm 36:9; John 1:9).
Finally, when you read about God or Christ (or the Spirit of God or the Word of God) in the scriptures, don’t imagine some strange force or alien being that exists totally other than and apart from you, but notice once again the aware presence and alert stillness within you and around you–notice the field of awareness that encompasses the whole of your experience, inside and out. And rather than fixating on the past or the future as the source of/or the solution to your problems, make the gift of God– here and now –your first priority. “Now is the accepted time . . . Now is the day of salvation!” (II Corinthians 6:2). Now and only now can you realize the Divine presence that “I Am” (present tense). Now and only now can you realize that we are, indeed, reconciled to God in Christ–and that, indeed, we live and move and have our being in Him (cf, II Corinthians 5:16-18; Acts 17:27). Remember:
Luke 9:23 [paraphrased] . . . “If any want to become my followers, let them deny [their imaginary, mind-made sense of self] and [facing reality] take up their cross daily and follow [the Divine presence that “I Am”]. 24 For those who [out of fear and wishful thinking] want to save their [imaginary] life will [in the process] lose [their real life], and those who lose their [imaginary] life for [the sake of the Divine presence that “I Am”] will save [their real life]. 25 What does it profit [those who wish to save their imaginary life] if they gain the whole world, but lose or forfeit themselves? (cf. Matthew 16:24; Mark 8:35; Luke 17:33).
If life has seemed– heretofore —unsatisfactory and insecure, do you really imagine that you will find redemption or security in the future? If so, perhaps these lines will give you pause:
When I consider life, ‘t is all a cheat.
Yet fool’d with hope, men favour the deceit;
Trust on, and think to-morrow will repay.
To-morrow ‘s falser than the former day;
Lies worse, and while it says we shall be blest
With some new joys, cuts off what we possest.
Strange cozenage! none would live past years again,
Yet all hope pleasure in what yet remain;
And from the dregs of life think to receive
What the first sprightly running could not give.
~ John Dryden
And in this moment, paused– rather than clinging to the story of “me” (along with all its regrets, resentments, and wishful thinking) –learn simply to be… Learn simply to be present with that which is present and leave tomorrow in God’s hands (cf. Matthew 6:26-28, 31-34). This may seem difficult, at first, but take up your cross–the kingdom of heaven is at hand!’