This is question I received from a very advanced meditation student last week.
“I have a lot of work to do here lately. I feel like I may have to meditate less than I have been, due to lack of time. Will this make me be less centered? Will I lose some ground in my life spiritually?”
There is a story about a great one who was close to God. Let’s say it was Moses. He was proud of how close he was to God. Then God decided to give him a lesson. God told him “I will show you one of my favorites. Moses says “what do you mean, one of your favorites. I thought I was your favorite.” God says to watch. He shows Moses a man with a family working in the field. The man works all day long. Every morning he wakes up and says Ram Nam. Ram Nam. Praising God. In the middle of the day, he stops and once again says “Ram Nam. Ram Nam.” At the end of the day after working all day to take care of his family and being with his family, he says once again Ram Nam, Ram Nam, and falls asleep. God says “Do you see why he is one of my favorites?” Moses replies, No. I pray and meditate all the time. This man does not even come close. God says “OK. I want you to do something for me.” Moses says “anything. Just tell me what to do.” God says “I want you to carry this glass of water to town and back. It is very important that you don’t spill a single drop.” God fills the glass to the top and gives it to Moses. Moses carries the glass oh so carefully being sure not to let a drop spill. It takes him until the next day. When he returns he tells God. ” I did it. Just as you asked. I carried it all the way and back without even a single drop.” God says, “very good. Now, how many times did you think about me, meditate or pray to me. Moses says, “none. I did have time. I was too busy doing what you asked.” God replies, “that man who I showed you has to work to take care of his family and the farm for me all day, and he still finds time to think of me and pray to me, three times a day.” This is why he is one of my favorites.
My point is, as long as you take time out for God and you are sincere while you are serving, you will be one of God’s favorites. Do the work that you need to do. Think of God and meditate before work and in the evening. If you can, chant your mantra in your mind during your work day or while driving in the car etc. Or when you have time, listen to talks and lessons that remind you of the deeper side of life as you drive. Or instead of watching your regular television show, turn on a movie that reminds you of spiritual life, even if you can only watch it for a half hour. If you do these things God will be with you in all your steps.