We have all wondered at times why we feel oppressed by feelings of guilt, depression, negativity, low self esteem and loneliness. Perhaps the best answer is to ask ourselves, why do we feel alienated from God, ourselves and each other.
Taking responsibility for our actions is called having a conscience. Society, religion and cultural norms stress an acceptable form of behavior, but none actually teach us that gratitude is the cure for our guilt laced, fear based lives.
Gratitude is what we experience when we have received a gift that fulfills a need or desire. Stories of “pay it forward”, inspire us because they highlight the potential of human kindness and unconditional love of which we are capable.
We judge others the way we think we will be judged, but in truth, we are loved unconditionally. We lack the full understanding of who God is and what He has already done for us. We have been forgiven and He expects us to learn to forgive ourselves and each other. That is God’s way of saying “see what I have done for you, show Me your gratitude by paying it forward”. When we finally accept ourselves as loved, forgiven, and restored, a humble gratitude emerges. We begin to develop compassion, connectedness, and the ability to forgive.