by James F. Twyman
Make every thought and action count. We are One—love and service connect us.
Saints and mystics agree that we are not the separate beings we believe ourselves to be, but that we are in reality—One. Miracles are occurring all around us every day and all we need to do is recognize them to share the blessings of harmony and connection for ourselves, our families, and our world. In the end, what we are seeking is not the riches of the world, but the richness of our souls. Here’s a conversation I shared with spiritual teacher Anakha Coman on fostering peace and love by learning to be a minister of Oneness:
James: When your ego hears the word servant, it usually thinks of someone who is less than, or subservient to, another. As with most things, the ego’s vision is completely the opposite of your Soul’s. Your Soul knows that by offering yourself in service to others, you’re serving the world, God, and, of course, yourself. It’s all intertwined, and the more you give, the more your life is filled with the riches your Soul really seeks. This is your ministry, and it’s the only thing that will truly satisfy you.
Anakha: I’m thinking about the importance of this and also its simplicity. The ego loves complexity! But if we allow it, our lives can become filled with grace, ease, clarity, and devotion when we realize that we’re here to be in service to Oneness. We’re here to assist in the unfolding and blossoming of Oneness on the planet. And when we begin each day with that intention in our hearts and minds, we can then place our attention and energy toward its fulfillment. It doesn’t matter what interactions and experiences we have throughout the day; we’re rooted in the knowledge that our sole purpose is to be a servant to Oneness, to expand the field of love and compassion everywhere we go.
James: The ministry of Oneness is also the “ministry of the moment.” Oftentimes when I’m working with people to help them discover what their path of service is, they struggle because they think that ministry is about doing rather than being. Yet we can only be present to this moment, and this is where our real ministry lies: in looking at what’s in front of us and asking, “Who can I serve right now?” That service may be as simple as a smile or holding the door open for someone, yet we never know how much our actions impact another person’s life. If someone has been on the verge of a psychological or emotional breakdown, a simple, heartfelt gesture may help him or her turn the corner. And it comes about by our willingness to be present in that moment, willing to see all people as a perfect reflection of the Divine, of Christ, or however else we wish to express it. I think this is really the key: the ministry of Oneness is being open and aware to how we can serve at any given moment.
Anakha: I believe that we should continually emphasize that if Oneness seems far-reaching or too difficult to understand, it becomes absolutely clear and available to us when we’re fully present. When we simply keep our hearts and minds focused upon the love of God and each other, then there’s no grandiose action we need to take. It’s as simple as being in the moment, asking, “How do I live and expand Oneness, how do I create more love here, and how do I flow more compassion and tenderness to this person going through this experience?” And you’re right, James—it can be as simple as smiling or holding a door open for someone or opening our arms in an embrace. And those seemingly small acts are actually miracle moments that ultimately create the wave of Oneness that’s sweeping across the planet.
Practice Cultivating Your Ministry of Oneness
Remember the words of Mother Teresa: “We can do no great things, only small things with great love.” The following exercises are simple and provide you with an opportunity to cultivate your ministry of Oneness…one moment, one prayer, and one act at a time, with great love.
Cultivating gratitude: In your journal, write down one thing that you’re grateful for every day. Keep a running list. At the end of the week, create a ritual in which you read all of the items and offer your gratitude to the Divine for all of the blessings of Oneness in your life.
Cultivating vision: Spend a full minute today in loving communion with something in nature. This could be a rock, leaf, tree, cloud, wind, dirt, flower, bug, bird, and so forth. Give your complete attention, and allow yourself to fully perceive Oneness contained in this creation.
Cultivating service: Engage in one intentional, loving act of service for another person today. For example, this could include making a friendly phone call, writing a cheerful letter, preparing an extra plate of food or folding laundry for someone else, or offering a listening ear. Offer your service from a place of unconditional love, in service to the growing Oneness.