“Many voices ask for our attention. There is a voice that says, “Prove that you are a good person.” Another voice says, “You’d better be ashamed of yourself.” There also is a voice that says, “Nobody really cares about you,” and one that says, “Be sure to become successful, popular, and powerful.” But underneath all these often very noisy voices is a still, small voice that says, “You are my Beloved, my favor rests on you.” That’s the voice we need most of all to hear. To hear that voice, however, requires special effort; it requires solitude, silence, and a strong
determination to listen.
That’s what prayer is. It is listening to the voice that calls us “my Beloved.”
– Henri J. M. Nouwen
I love this piece of writing by Henri Nouwen. It carries truth and wisdom. The still, small voice within us is indeed saying, “You are My beloved. My favour rests on you”. Any other voice is from outside, either from the society or from the ego or our false identity that is based on performance mindset or circumstances. But the still, small voice, as we know, comes from our true identity, our divine higher self, and is always seeking to reconcile us to ourselves and experience inner peace and unconditional love.
It is vital that we listen and heed the still, small voice within us that affirms us about our belovedness and innocence and perfection, which will help us overcome any sense of rejection. If someone has been listening to outside voices rather than the still, small voice, hence he/she probably would have been feeling a sense of rejection, and end up not showing love and acceptance towards himself/herself and others. I used to be prone to the sense of rejection when I was younger, especially when I was in school. It’s over many years of reading self-help books and spiritual books and meditating on the truth of our belovedness that help me to recover and remember my true divine self and learn to love and accept myself and others. We are indeed made in the image of God, who is love.
- “A friend who cares” ~ Henri Nouwen (realrest.wordpress.com)
- Life of the Beloved (shelflove.wordpress.com)
- Advent Contemplations: Being Light, Despite All (eagleborn2fly.wordpress.com)
- The search for identity – Building on Henri Nouwen’s understanding (inheaventhereisnoreligion.wordpress.com)