Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Covenant

The Old Testament tells the story of King Josiah who ruled over ancient Israel when he was only eight years old. While still a young man, he authorized an extensive renovation of the Temple, where workers accidentally uncovered an old copy of scripture, or the Book of the Law. A priest read the book aloud in the presence of the king, causing him to weep. I'm not sure if the people no longer owned copies of the book, or if it simply fell into disuse, but the king realized his people had gone astray from its sacred teachings. He caused the book to be read to all the people, who joined him in renewing their covenant to the Lord (2 Kings Chapters 22 and 23).

Something happened recently to remind me of this story in my own life. About eight years ago, I completed a training through a company called Spectrum. The training provided a safe place for me to peel back the layers of limiting beliefs and to remember who I really am. Contrary to the way I normally lived my life, I discovered this one truth:

I am a courageous, passionate, worthy man.

This statement became an agreement or covenant between me and the universe. It is a reflection of who I really am on the deepest level. When I honor my commitment, I experience the world as exciting and clear; but when I betray my commitment, I tend to behave in exactly the opposite way; I become timid, fearful, anxious, lethargic, worthless, and irredeemable. This covenant has become a measure of integrity and honor.

Several years after completing the training, I forgot my commitment and fell into a time of deep darkness and depression. Through incredible effort, I slowly returned to my original self and began to experience goodness once again. After Spectrum closed, I started staffing the Great Life in Utah.

As if to remind me of my word, I was digging through some old junk in the garage, and I found an old written copy of my agreement made all those years ago. I was stunned! The paper was wrinkled, stained, and had holes in the center, but the message is the same. I felt like Josiah, who had lost the Law and then had it restored to him. I'm grateful to remember my own commitment and sense of self-worth.

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