3: Make Me an Instrument
Today, I want to talk about how the purpose of prayer is to make yourself an instrument for God to express through, and my scripture comes from Psalm 46:10: Be still and know that I am God. I am exalted among the nations. I am exalted in the Earth. Be still and know that I am God.
All right, builders, let’s dive in!
What I want you to know and what you need to understand as a builder of consciousness, is that the word “exalt” is a verb. It’s a verb form of the word “exaltation.” And metaphysically speaking, exaltation symbolizes a lifting up, a raising up of the consciousness and humankind from the physical-mental basis to the spiritual. I hear the voice of God within me, and I am exalted.
So go back to what that verse said. Be still and know that I am God. I am exalted among the nations. The nations are the collection of thoughts, right?
And I’m exalted in the Earth, means I’m in the thoughts, and I’m also in the manifestation, right? I am. There’s this lifting up. Be still and know that I am God. So remember, we previously explored this idea with hearing the voice of God.
We talked about the prayer tool of scripture as a tool that helps us to develop our spiritual ear. We said the messages of God are ever being broadcast all around us every day. But only those who’ve developed a spiritual ear can actually hear what’s being said, right? So we started with just developing our ability to hear. Then, we said that once you hear the voice of God, you’ve now got to Orient yourself toward that inner voice, right?
We talked about the prayer tool of Thanksgiving, of praise, of worship as a means to position ourselves inwardly toward God. Right? So there’s hearing, then there’s a turning, right? There’s a hearing, and then a turning. As we give thanks and offer praise and worship to God, the distracting things in our lives lose their grip on our hearts.
We have another tool in there that we really didn’t talk about, but it’s in the book, and I just want to mention it, which is forgiveness and fasting; and all of it, the forgiveness, the fasting, the praise of Thanksgiving, the worship, is all about an inner-positioning, right? I’ve heard the voice. Now, I’ve got to get in position. Today, we’re going to look at the prayer tools of movement and stillness, silence and sound. These tools begin the lifting process of the consciousness.
The consciousness begins to rise. Dr. Pulley calls these the wrench and the hand saw. It was D. H. Lawrence that said, “Action ought to come out of an achieved stillness, not a mere rushing on.” So the question that I want you to answer for yourself is: What can you hold?
And I’m going to explain what I mean by that. Everyone is a suitable container for something. The question is, what are you a suitable container for? What are you shaped to hold?
I submit to you that prayer has one purpose, and one purpose alone. I don’t care what the tool is, whether it’s the hand saw, the wrench, the nuts, the bolts, the screwdriver. I don’t care what tool it is. Prayer has one purpose, and that purpose is to shape you into a suitable container for God…One purpose. Remember this.
Becoming a Suitable Container
There’s only ever one message being broadcast, and the purpose of that message is to position you so that God can express through you. Well, that’s it! Prayer has one purpose: to shape you into a suitable container for God.
I want you to think about the dreams that you have on your life. I want you to think about the things that you want to accomplish that are important to you. Maybe you desire to build a family. Maybe you desire to retire. Maybe your desire is to find a new purpose. Maybe you have come to a season in your life where you feel like the fire has left. Maybe you are looking for the resources to build a business, and you’ve got this idea. Maybe you’ve published a lot of books, but maybe they haven’t yet reached the audience that you want to reach.
What are you a suitable container for? You have the life that you are a suitable container for. In order to have a different experience, the container has got to be reshaped. The container has got to be reconfigured.
And prayer is your best means of getting there, and its only purpose is to make you that suitable container. I want to go back to the affirmation that Reverend Pulley worked with when he was here for our Ministry development weekend. He said, “I am the everlasting energy of God expressing through the events of my life, calling forth experiences so that my soul may be educated and enlightened. And through my personal enlightenment, I contribute to the collective expansion of the universe. I am here to expand the universe. And the way that I expand the universe is through being educated and enlightened by the experiences that I have. But those experiences are my interpretation of the events of my life. And the events of my life are simply channels for the everlasting energy of God to express through.”
Now, somebody might be saying, “No, Rev. Sherri. I pray so that I can have what I need. I pray so that I can have a house and I can pay my house note. I pray so that I can have enough money to feed my children.” And I would say, so that you want to feed them so that they can, right? And the answer always comes back to be a suitable container for God to express through these hopes, these dreams; they are there because the Spirit desires to express through you.
In fact, it would be fair to say that this everlasting energy that you are, the everlasting energy of God, that is you craves expression. Have you ever craved something? It’s like, you know what? I’ve just got to have it! We talk that way when we say, “I had a craving for something sweet,” meaning that it was gnawing at the inside of me.
I had to do something about it. I just really wanted. And I want you to understand that the everlasting energy of God that you are craves expression through you. It’s always expressing through you. And it wants a bigger platform to express through you.
Prayer’s sole purpose is to turn you into a suitable container so that more of the energy of God gets to express.
A wrench is a tool with jaws that are normally used for holding, turning, twisting, rotary fasteners such as nuts and bolts. It provides grip and mechanical advantage in applying torque. It’s like a twisting force that causes rotation to turn objects or to keep them from turning. Sometimes the purpose of the wrench of prayer is to keep you still, and allow you to cease your constant moving.
See, if you are not careful, the demands of life can keep you so busy, moving here and there, that you don’t give your relationship with God the quality time that it requires.
You were put here to express God. You were put here with hopes and with dreams to express. The fact that you have the dream, whether you have done anything about it or not, is evidence of your capacity to manifest it. The fact that you have hopes and dreams, whether you have done anything about them or not, is evidence that you have the capacity to express them. And so I’m going to give you four things.
Remeber to Take the Lid Off
The first thing is that sometimes you’ve got to be still. Stillness, metaphysically, is a mental state of infinite peace, rest and tranquility where your senses are hushed and you abide in God. Be still and know that I am God. In other words, slow down so you can open up. Too much activity can interfere with the receiving of spirit stillness.
You never know what doors you keep closed because you keep running to and fro, and you don’t make room for the Spirit to express through you. Remember, God is always speaking! The messages of God are always being broadcast at all times and under allcircumstances. And so your job is to get still enough so that you can hear the voice of God.
So what happens with the stillness is that there is this lifting effect. The pressure that you feel from operating in the world begins to lift from your shoulders when you just take the time to be quiet.
I started practicing transcendental meditation last year. And one of the most amazing things that I experienced with learning this technique is that just sitting for those 20 minutes is enough time for the pressure to lift. It’s almost like if you have a kettle. It’s boiling and it’s got a lid on it and it could blow… But if I take the lid off, I take some of the pressure off, even though it’s still boiling, and the heat hasn’t changed. But taking the lid off will take some of that pressure off. We let ourselves go and we just build up, build up, build up, build up, build up. And we never take time to just take the lid off.
When you make time to be still, that stillness takes the lid off so that the pressure can let out. Sometimes you’ve got to be still.
Motion Creates Emotion
But point number two is: Sometimes you have to move. Genesis 1: 1–5 says, In the beginning, God created the heavens and the Earth, and the Earth was waste and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the waters, the face of the waters.
Motion creates emotion. Meaning, there comes a season in your experience where it’s not time to be still. I know that sometimes when I’m working on something, I have this amazing — they call it a Rebounder — but essentially, it’s a mini trampoline that I will just go and jump on. And what it will do is, it’s like it almost shakes loose the ideas. There’s also this wonderful book, Walking Your Blues Away, that talks about it.
There’s something about the motion of the bipedal motion of moving your feet and your legs and your hands undistracted, that begins to break up energy. You can be just hot — like angry, full of emotion. And if you will simply begin to walk and keep going (don’t stop!), the energy inside of you will begin to break up. It is a fact that you can’t be depressed and keep walking.
In fact, there are anthropological studies that show that the movement that we experienced pre-20th century, at least maybe back when we had to do a little bit more manual labor to make life happen, that you just didn’t have things like depression. The way that we see it today, depression has a physiology. If I told you right now to get into a depressed state, likely one of the first things that you would do would be to hunch your body. You cannot keep your body upright, straight back straight, and be depressed. Just try it.
You don’t have to take my word for it. Prove it to yourself. Every state of mind has a physiology. And so sometimes you’ve got to get out of the energy that you’re in. And movement is one of the God-given gifts that we have been given to heal ourselves.
Move, get up, get in action. Put one foot in front of the other. If you can’t do anything but walk around your house, do that. Start there. Sometimes you’ve just got to move!
Sometimes the only way to break up a negative state-of-mind is to move, to create some activity.
Listening to the Divine Mind
Which brings me to point number three: Sometimes you have to be quiet. The revealing word says metaphysically, the quiet — the silence — is a state of consciousness entered into for the purpose of putting you in touch with divine mind so that the soul may listen to the still, small voice.
Some of the best connection I can experience is when I am moving and silent.
We have some scenic places here in California that are just breathtaking — and I know you have some wherever you are, too. And I’m telling you: go find a reservoir, or park, or some other beautiful place to walk, and just walk… and give yourself a good 30 minutes (or even a quick 3 minutes!).
Y’all know I like to baby-step my way into anything! Start with three minutes, and just walk and take it in. You say, it’s hard for me to walk. I’m saying, if you can only take two steps, take those two steps. And then tomorrow, take those same two steps, and then the next day, take those same two steps.
There’s something wonderful that happens with movement and silence. When one goes into the silence, he enters the secret place of the Most High, the closet of prayer within. He closes the door. And in the stillness of that meeting place, he prays to God.
He communes with God, and he meditates on Truth. Then, he listens to what God has to say to him. Listen for what stands under all expression. It is a beautiful thing to just get out and walk and move. And it’s a beautiful thing to combine it with silence!
Make a Joyful Noice
And finally, point number four: Sometimes you have to make a sound, right? It is an interesting fact to consider that our universe in reality is silent. Sounds or noise don’t really exist. What you and I call sound is actually an impression that’s made by silent vibrations on our nervous system… isn’t that something?
Silent vibrations touch our eardrums and are conveyed to a section of our brain where it is only interpreted by us as sound. But what we call noise or sound is actually a concept centered only in our brains. But all the power of the universe is silent and activated. Silence is the Holy Spirit.
So when you make a sound — there’s this participation — it’s a vibratory action that’s happening.
And so you make a joyful noise, right? You make a sound that resonates with your soul, and it begins to reverberate through you. You can use sound to reshape yourself. I don’t know if you’ve ever had a sound bath, but that’s a thing! That’s a whole thing where you can begin to reshape yourself and the sound will heal you. This is powerful stuff.
Becoming All Four Actions
Alright, let’s review! The purpose of prayer is to make yourself an instrument for God to express through. Sometimes you have to be still. Sometimes you have to be silent. Sometimes you have to make a sound. And sometimes you have to move.
Never forget why, though! Remember, these are tools that we are using so that we may release the everlasting energy of God that I am — that’s expressing through the events of my life, that are calling forth experiences so that my soul may be educated and enlightened. And when my soul is enlightened, I contribute to the collective expansion of the universe.
These 4 qualities are these 4 actions. These are prayer tools that you can use to begin the lifting process. This is what we’re doing. Remember, we started with listening for the voice of God, discerning it above all other voices. Then, we oriented ourselves inwardly toward that voice.
Now, what we’re doing is we’re beginning the lifting process. This is why the scripture says, let all the Earth be silent before God, right? Because in that silence, there is a lifting. But sometimes you have to move, right? Sometimes you have to move because you have to break up the energy’s atmosphere where you are.
So, these tools sometimes go together, and then there is sound. If you can just begin to make sound, there’s something to that… sometimes I just walk around my house and I clap. Yes, this is an abundant space. This is an abundant space. Everything in my life works. Everything in my life works. Everything in my life is coming together.
Yes, we are creative energy. And so what you want to do with these 4 tools is begin to mix and mingle them because they all have a lifting process. They all raise the consciousness; they raise the vibratory nature of the consciousness.
Each one of us is vibrating at a certain thought level. And what we want to do is to get into agreement — get into vibratory agreement — with where we’re going… get into vibratory agreement with good health, great wealth, healthy relationships, and so on. And these four tools are ways that we can begin to do that, ways that we can begin to operate at a higher level.
And I believe this may be part of what St. Francis meant when he prayed his prayer. And I thought it was so powerful, I figured I wanted to close with this.
He said, “Lord make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. And where there is sadness, joy. Oh, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console. To be understood, as to understand. To be loved, as to love. For it is in giving, that we receive. It is in pardoning, that we are pardoned. And it is in dying, that we are born to eternal life.”
God bless you. Amen.