Are You Receiving Gifts or Trying to Learn Lessons?

by Diana Rankin

Sugar Plum Snowflake
Image by CaptPiper via Flickr


People have told me that Planet Earth is a school and we are here to learn our lessons. I disagree. I believe we are here to love. That’s it. Just to love.  When we love, we see all that comes to us as a gift. It is in receiving the gifts—instead of learning a lesson—that we learn more about love and about life. 

This is not to say that we never have anything to learn. Quite the contrary. We should be life-long learners, but at some point we need to graduate from school and become adult learners. As long as we are in school, our mindset keeps us as students with a teacher in front of the classroom teaching us. As we graduate, we allow our own wisdom to be our teacher. We learn to listen to ourselves as well as the wisdom of a multitude of others including nature, animals, books, and certainly those humans who have gone before us on the path we now tread. We let go of the need to learn and do it right and instead we learn to just be, receiving the gifts and relishing in the excitement of each moment.

Daily, I see so many with tears falling from the deepest of heart breaks from grief or betrayals.  As we look at the deeper meaning of the pain, we are able to see beyond any lesson and find the true gifts. A lover’s betrayal often opens the heart to greater love by setting  the one in pain on an inward journey, seeking the spiritual path and truly uniting with the Beloved, which then heals the pain by allowing us to understand—and accept—the truth and the limitations of the human beloved. When we are able to see the one who we perceive as hurting us as an instrument to help us remember the truth of who we are—a being of love—we are able to see the heartbreak as a gift and the giver of that gift as a soul mate with whom we made an agreement: “Come wake me lest I forget who I truly am.”

If we are caught in lessons, we keep asking ourselves what we are tying to learn and may miss the gifts of the time we spent together. When we seek the gift instead of the lesson, we are able to see how one action that may have been hurtful to us actually led us to a place that was for our betterment and gave us the greater gift of something that turned out to be so much more than what we once had.

Again, this is not to say there is nothing for us to learn. Certainly when our hearts are broken, we want to ask ourselves what is our part in the heartbreak. Perhaps we need to choose more wisely, to be more discerning. But if we stay stuck in always learning our lessons, we often miss the gifts that await us. Instead of celebrating the gifts of the situation, we get caught in bemoaning that we didn’t learn our lesson the first time and are once again in a situation that causes us grief.

Words have power. They interact with our physical and emotional health.  They propel us forward or hold us back. They build us up with confidence and surety or they tear us down in blame and insecurity. Lessons. Yes, we all have things to learn throughout our lifetime, but there comes a time in each of our lives when we are allow to walk away from school and live in the celebration of the gifts of who we are and all that life holds for us.





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