Excerpted from The Quest
"I am the way, and the truth, and the life."—John 14:6
"My true nature is fear."
"The very essence of me is sick and tired."
"Poverty is God's will for me."
"Old age is my divine inheritance."
Ouch! Makes you wince, doesn't it? Who would say such things, especially in light of what we now know about the power of our words?
Yet it's shocking to learn that many of us broadcast the equivalent of such dreadful statements every day. How? By following the powerful words I am with something less than God's will for us:
"I am so afraid of failing."
"I am sick and tired of your behavior."
"I am too poor to afford it."
"I am too old to travel anymore."
These are the kinds of pronouncements we hear all around us, maybe even say ourselves. But such statements are dangerous, even lethal. This is because they all contain those two little words I am.
The words I am are so powerful that they must be used with extreme care. Why? Because the words I am are your actual identity. They are your spiritual name, the identity of your spiritual self. Your I AM is the name of the God nature in you and of all the divine potential in you. It is who you are at your Christ essence. I AM is your true identity.
Feel the Power
If you want to feel the power of the words I am, substitute the words It is my essence to be ... , or It is my nature to be ... , or ... is God's will for me. Thus a seemingly innocuous comment, "I am so worried," translates into "It is my very nature to be worried." A comment said in frustration, "I am absolutely devastated," becomes "It is my essence to be devastated." The statement "I am a diabetic" is really the assertion
"Diabetes is God's will for me."
Restated that way, those statements feel so uncomfortable to you because they more clearly point out that you are claiming something you don't really want. You are identifying yourself with something far, far removed from your essence.
Yet that's exactly what happens when you use the words I am. You put a claim into the great Creative Intelligence of the universe to transform yourself into whatever it is with which you are identifying.
When negative feelings are put into "I am" statements, these seemingly harmless statements take on a life-altering seriousness. Can you really believe that it is your nature to be worried? Of course, you feel concerned and anxious at times; we all allow circumstances to bully us, but worry as part of your true nature? Never.
There are times when events can make us feel devastated-the death of a loved one, a serious financial setback, a relationship gone sour. But saying "I feel devastated" is significantly different than claiming "I am devastated." What you feel is transitory, what you are is forever.
What about identifying yourself with a sickness (for instance, "I am a diabetic")? If God's desire for us is absolute good, then how can God inflict diabetes on anyone? But if you insist on claiming it, making it part of your identity, then it's yours because you are holding on to it.