Setting Intentions

Aug 10, 2015

Sometimes it’s a call from God. Or maybe you are embarrassed by what you’ve said or done and know that it was not said or done from love. It may come from an accumulation of evidence that something is wrong in your body or heart or mind. At one time for me it was a call to be a vector. I didn’t know what the word meant, but it turned out to be a one-pointedness, like an arrow, everything pointing in the same direction. At the time I was constantly buffeted by different voices/energies within me. So my spiritual director taught me how to set an intention.

So with my whole self, body/mind/soul/heart, I set an intention to be a vector. And forgot about it. Four or five months later I was feeling very integrated, a brand new feeling I had never encountered before. As I thought back to what might have caused this integration, I remembered the intention I had set.

I had done nothing about it in the meantime, but the intention was still accomplished within me. How did that happen? God calls us to change throughout our lives and all along our journey with him, but will not violate our free will. So we have to open the door to his Spirit to transform what he wants to make new in us. And so the call. But if we don’t open that inner door, nothing will happen. When we set an intention to be what the call is about, we are inviting the Spirit in to transform, to heal that area of our lives.

Our part is to set the intention; the Lord takes care of everything else. The same happens when we set an intention with our whole being because of what we have said and done that is way short of being loving. We are inviting the Holy Spirit in to transform that part of us. Over time I might have 10-20 intentions set at anyone time and I can see the power of the Spirit working in me, even though I don’t track the individual intentions anymore.

Recently, I realized that I had a lot going on in one part of my throat and face: rosacea, dry mouth, some difficulty swallowing. Once I realized how concentrated they were in one part of my body, I set an intention for healing all these symptoms, inviting the Lord in to heal the underlying cause.

Oh, I know, you object, new agers set intentions, too. People set intentions about how much money they want and other material goals. But that is not what I am writing about. I am writing about a serious desire to access the deeper and deeper levels of relationship with the Lord.

Intention is not an affirmation or prayer that you have to keep repeating. It’s a one-time, whole person commitment to, a focused prayer about, our own best interest as God sees it or correcting what we see as our own failings.

Intention is about us co-operating in the ever deepening relationship with the Lord. It is a way for us to live into the ability to love God with all of ourselves—heart, mind, soul and body—which we are unable to do until many human tendencies are healed. So much of what needs to happen in our relationship with God cannot be done by us. We’re too close to the situation to divine what we need to do next. And our ego wants to control everything so it usually “misunderstands” what God is asking of us, keeping us to only limited change, so that it keeps control of our lives.

So when you hear a call from the Indwelling Spirit or you’re embarrassed by your behavior towards someone, set an intention to be what you’re being called to be or to be grounded in love towards that person. Bring your whole self into the prayer and let God do the rest.

Only God knows what the next best step is for us to take, what issue to tackle now, what process we need to take to uncover our true selves as we were created to be and how we were created to give back to God. He planted his agenda for us in our souls and he knows how to access it. Intention is the best means of aligning ourselves with God’s will for us, because we are putting our transformation in his hands. And what we desire more than anything, a true home in God’s arms, is what will be accomplished through intention. Thanks be to God!

Questions to ponder over the week: How do you go deeper into your relationship with God? Do you know how? Is God calling you to set intentions, to open the door for him to transform you? And do you say, “Yes!”

Blessing for the week: May we follow the Lord’s lead in our lives. May we align ourselves with his will through setting intentions. May we be transformed into the people we were created to be.

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–Check out the “Shop Now” at the top of this page which links to a CD of guided meditations and a series of booklets on the Life of the Spirit.
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