Dear Joshua ,
I have recently experienced a conflict in my association with a church group. I was about to quit the group as I deemed their treatment of my presence was not a welcoming one. I was about to email the group individually and inform them that I was quitting because I felt like a teenager attending a new school, mid semester, where all cliques were in place and friendships established and I was forced to pay my dues before they accepted me. I further felt ostracized when, for all the established members each meeting resembled a class reunion. This affected my participation in a negative way.
So, as quitting is not an option, I will follow your teachings, change my attitude and have a positive approach toward the group.
It is fun for us to see how what you have learned in such a short time is making it’s way into your reality and you are altering your perspective in a way that is highly beneficial. We see that your past responses to the conditions caused you to act in a way that did not serve you. Now you are seeing that there is more to the story and you can see the reality for what it is. As you change your perspective you will begin to feel batter about every condition.
We see that in the past you would take the actions of others as an offense. You believed that it was something about you that caused them to act in such a way and you would not tolerate it. In order for you to feel better, you left the condition behind and then felt some relief. However, leaving the condition that you did not like never serves your higher purpose. It might feel better for a while, but soon you will be inevitably cast in another similar condition.
You cannot expect people to act in a way that you alone deem appropriate. Even if they knew how you felt, and somehow you demanded them to act in a way that pleased you, they could not. You are solely responsible for how you feel. You think you would feel better if others behaved a certain way, but this is not how reality works and you are coming to understand this.
When you look at the actions of others from a higher, broader perspective, taking yourself out of the picture for a moment, you can see that their actions are motivated by their personal reality and their own unique beliefs. Most of the time this has nothing to do with you. When you observe those who are part of a group and they seem to exclude you, you are not looking at the situation from their perspective.
Many people are shy and somewhat insecure about their place in the world. So they join groups of other like-minded people in order to gain a sense of security and belonging. They do not feel entirely worthy on their own (which is incredibly common) so they seek the comfort of groups. Over time the develop connections with these people. They build history, they have things in common, they can slip in and out of conversations easily and they feel accepted. It is all done to provide comfort.
As you, someone who is new to the group, enters the environment, they put up defenses quite naturally. You remind them of their insecurities. They do not know you so it makes it hard for them to initiate a conversation. They are far more concerned about what you will think of them than what they actually think of you. They are all good people, and over time, with enough contact, they will see your positive aspects and allow you into their group.
All you have to do is show up. You know you’re already worthy of their friendship. You have a lot of interesting experiences to share. They want to include you, but it must be done at their speed. They are waiting to see if you stick around before they invest in you.
You can help the situation by expecting them to be kind and, when they appear not to be, forgiving them for their somewhat unconscious approach to life. You must hold them and yourself in high regard at all times and in time they will do the same. It is this way with every situation. It matters not the circumstance. If you desire to experience something and others appear to be holding the key to the gate, simply walk though, understanding your worthiness, and in time they will see it too. It is completely within your control.
Everything that happens to you is a reflection of how you see yourself. You can be a victor or a victim. It is up to you. What you perceive as the reality of the situation is often an illusion based on your specific set of beliefs about yourself. Be more confident in your ability to understand what’s really going on and you’ll learn to see every situation from the higher, broader perspective.
You are loved and appreciated more than you can imagine.