A man asked God if he'd ever find the woman of his dreams. God told him if he was vigilant, he would surely meet his soul mate. And so the man carefully observed every woman that crossed his path. He began at her toes, and slowly worked his way up her calves, to her thighs. He paused briefly at her hind quarter, and then eased his way up her waist, again pausing at her breasts. Finally, he observed the contours of her face, and the luster of her hair. On a number of occasions he convinced himself that he'd found the "one." Time, however, always proved his predictions wrong.
After years of failed relationships, the man died, and, once more, found himself in the presence of God. "Lord," he asked. "why did you tell me I would meet my soul mate, if you had no intention of sending her to me?"
"My son," replied the Lord, "I sent her to you many times."
"But Lord," exclaimed the man, "I don't remember meeting her!"
"That's because her legs weren't shapely enough, her waist wasn't tiny enough, and her breasts weren't big enough, to spark your interest. You looked past her every time your paths crossed."
"So, my soul mate was an ugly girl???"
"Average, using your method of classifying beauty."
"But Lord," Protested the man, "that's not fair!"
"My boy, since I make the rules, it is perfectly fair. Did you think your soul mate would be a trophy wife? Did you think she would be a fashion model, or a beauty queen? How did you expect to recognize your SOUL mate, if you never looked beyond the flesh?"
"You know me better than anyone Lord! I am attracted to beautiful women!"
"And that is why you failed; because you assign beauty to what resides on the surface. But true beauty cannot be seen with the eyes. If one only follows the ways of the flesh, how can he expect to find a spiritual connection?"
The Lord waved his hand, and the man began to see images of other people take shape before him. The image was that of a beautiful woman, in a mansion, pouring herself a glass of brandy. She was obviously drunk, however, that didn't stop her from having another drink, and then another.
"Meet Sally Ann Rush." The Lord's voice took a somber tone. "Like you, Sally prayed for a soul mate to complete her. She was fifteen when she made that request, and hadn't quite blossomed yet. She had faith back then; hopes and dreams of happily ever after endings to compliment a perfect life."
"Was she supposed to be my soul mate Lord?" Asked the man. "I mean, this woman is far from average looking."
"No. She is an example which, like your soul mate, you will miss, if you do not pay attention.
By the following year, Sally had grown into an attractive young woman. She was popular in school, and had the boys lining up to ask her out. She had her pick of any boy at her high school, and it was the same when she entered college. There she made a choice, to pursue financial security over spiritual happiness. You see, her soul mate was a young man who had grown up three houses down from her childhood home. They were best friends before she became popular; but he was just an average looking fellow, with little to offer monetarily.
Sally had everything she'd ever dreamed of; a big house, a fast car, a huge bank account, summer and winter homes in far away places, and a handsome husband. Of course, certain concessions had to be made. Her husband had numerous affairs, and he spent most of his time away from her. After a few years Sally began to drown her loneliness in alcohol, and pursued affairs of her own. Yet nothing eased her pain.
One afternoon, she was surfing the internet and received an invitation to join a community website. It had been sent by her childhood best friend. They began exchanging email correspondence; and she was amazed at how effortless it was to talk with him. She felt completely at ease, as if she had nothing to hide. It was as though he could see right into her soul without even trying. This, after all, was her soul mate. But her choices prevented her from seeing that when it truly mattered. And now, the truth has come too late; for her soul mate is already a husband, and a father. He is an honorable man who will not betray the vows he made to his wife, and to me. And so, Sally's course has been charted. A lonely voyage, filled with regret. Much the same as the path you chose."
"Why didn't you do something Lord?" Asked the man. "Why didn't you intervene, and MAKE me see my soul mate."
"If I did that, my son, I would be influencing YOUR choice. How can one expect to succeed at any task if there is no chance of failure?"
"But Lord, this is my life, and my happiness we're talking about!"
"Indeed it is; a life that you chose to squander, as Sally did. Have you any idea how few soul mates find one another in life? My children pray to find that special someone, meant just for them, but they want the soul to come with certain superficial and material amenities. If a man isn't handsome enough, or a woman isn't pretty enough, the one looking may never notice their presence. Like you, they inevitably ask why I didn't do more to insure their happiness."
"But you're GOD!" Exclaimed the man. "You can do anything!"
"Anything, but make your choices for you."
"So how are people supposed to find happiness??"
"Do you really have to ask that question? You will find it by making better choices. Soul mates will always meet, but they will seldom be recognized. I have tried to warn you about the hazards of material pursuits coming before spiritual needs. Did the Bible not say, in First John, chapter two:
Do not love the world, nor the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, love of the Father does not abide in them. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. The world will pass away, along with the lust thereof.
When souls connect, they peel away the layers of the world, and lust of earthly things is overcome. You chose lust of the flesh over spiritual love, while Sally chose financial security. The next soul to plead this case, will not understand why sleeping with someone at the beginning of a relationship did not result in a happily ever after ending. Souls are not flesh; they do not succumb to earthly pursuits. Souls are connected at a level that transcends worldly desires. How can one expect spiritual happiness when the only needs they attend to are those of the flesh?"
"Ok, suppose I admit that this is my own fault. What happens next?"
"That, my son, will also depend upon your choices. Your conduct in life has not earned you a place in heaven. You see, heaven is a place where souls are connected - where you are laid bare, for all to see; every choice, every thought, every deed, exposed to the last detail. There is no room for lust, or pride, gluttony, or envy. Greed does not abide there, nor does wrath, or sloth. The ways of the world cannot pass through heaven's gate.
It is for this reason that I gave the world a savior. You alone, cannot wipe the stain of the world from your soul. If you are humble enough to admit that, and willing to allow your soul to be cleansed, by the one who overcame a world that defeated you, then you will finally find what you've been searching for. Beyond this gate awaits a multitude; and each soul is just like you."
The man made his choice, and moved on to meet eternity. Which direction he chose cannot be shared, until each soul has made that choice for themselves. But make no mistake, everything will be revealed on that day. In the meantime, I hope this parable helps you to find what you're looking for. If not, I hope it will shed some light on why the love you seek has not been found. God bless.