Remember the Ten Commandments? As a child, I was taught that they were the firm orders of a testy God who demanded obedience above all else. When I later left that dualistic understanding of God behind, the Ten Commandments got put up on a shelf somewhere in the attic. Not that I broke them on a regular basis—well, not all of them anyway—but I just kind of forgot they were there.
Imagine my surprise to find recently that my newfound spiritual understanding takes me right back to the first, most basic commandment of all. I AM the LORD, your God. You shall have no other gods before me.
I AM is the simple, two-word statement that most powerfully links Hebrew scripture, in which Moses learns its infinite creative power, to the New Testament, in which Jesus uses great I AM statements to describe the true spiritual Beingness we all share. I AM is, in itself, a complete and perfect statement of spiritual Truth. Any words we may add—I AM happy, I AM healthy, I AM sorry—become statements of personal belief that define how we choose to express our creative Beingness.
The Ten Commandments began to resonate for me when I read the great New Thought teacher Emmet Fox, who suggested that ‘You shall not’ could more accurately translated as ‘You cannot.’ So, here, ‘You cannot have other gods before me.’ We can—and do!—try, but it can’t be done. And the universe waits patiently for us to realize that we can’t abdicate our spiritual identity, or our creative power.
I AM is the LORD of my Beingness today. I allow each I AM statement to express my belief, and my sacred intention. Every lovingly chosen I AM statement brings more of the infinite Divine into tangible mortal expression. I AM aware, and I AM grateful. Or, more accurately perhaps, I AM awareness, and I AM gratitude.