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Updated: Apr 5

Yes, please... Prayer and Meditation help me peacefully pass through the emotional, physical, or other kinds of pain, stress, or suffering I may need to endure for a time.

This is one of the reasons the positive book of Philippians chapter 4 written by Paul is my go-to daily meditation.

This past summer and year leading up to it...

I recently made a decision to visit a Foot Reflexologist right after my recent trip to Europe to relieve my fatigued feet-- especially the right one which has been painful from plantar fasciitis for 11 months now. I thought the benefits would outweigh the risks and the costs involved. Unfortunately in this case it did not. The end results were the equivalent of asking your friend to punch you in your left arm so you forget about the pain in your right one.

Now weeks later, my left foot actually hurts even more than the right -- on the top and side (NOT plantar fasciitis) as a direct result of the massage by this trained reflexology expert. Clearly in this case, as already mentioned, the benefits were not worth the costs. It happens. Another lesson learned. It was especially concerning when it was even painful to swim this morning, which is one of the lowest impact workout options available.

Anyway, prayer and meditation helps. Noticing the pain, observing the sensations, and BREATHING through them while gliding through the literal or metaphorical water is life-giving and peace-producing.

The other essential tool that helps when you are facing a major decision such as marriage, career, faith, or other proverbial fork in the road is to write out a list of all the foreseeable pros and cons with either decision you make. For example, if you are currently suffering in an unhappy marriage and you are contemplating divorce, first check out the "stay married movement," then write out ALL of the possible pros and cons with divorce AND ALL of the pros and cons with staying married. Consider finances, child custody, ripple effects on the rest of your family, in-laws, friends and anyone else who may immediately or eventually be affected by your divorce. Also include housing on your list, moral dilemmas, legal name changes, assets, retirement plans, future spouses, step-parents, and a long list of other domino effects you may not have yet contemplated.

Trust me when I say there will be even more than you can possibly fathom at this time. In other words, don't simply look at your new found freedoms, and imagine the (idiom) greener grass on the other side of the fence...

The simple profound truth is that the grass is greenest wherever you water it -- both literally and metaphorically speaking.

And an even more valuable tool than the pros and cons list is PRAYER.

Even if you don't consider yourself to be a church-going religious person, please consider praying about any potentially life-changing decision before moving forward with it.

You might be surprised by the clarity that comes through a variety of doors which open and close for you as a direct result of heartfelt prayers either from you or for you on your behalf.

Prayer is powerful. Prayer works. Don't knock it until you try it! There is ALWAYS an answer. It may be a resounding "Yes", a "Not at this time", or a "Wait, I have something even BETTER planned for you!" This has been my experience every single time. Sometimes the consequences from my choices are painful, like the examples provided above. Another HUGE benefit from meditation is being able to process the expansive Spiritual Growth that comes as a result of the most excruciatingly painful experiences. It's [almost] enough to make me welcome the pain and suffering, as I pray daily for the knowledge of God's Will and the Power to carry it out: "Thy Will (not mine) be done Lord."

If you are interested in seeing more of this sparkly rainbow fish, check out this bedtime story on Grateful Gwen Good Reads Channel:

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