I attended a funeral today and was brought to tears not out of grief but out of joy for the love connecting members of one soul family.

The announcement of the service hinted that there might be a story behind the obvious death of my friend Susan’s mother. I wondered at the time what led to delay the memorial service until three weeks after her mom’s death. I was surprised to learn that the death of Susan’s father in his homeland four weeks before was the scheduling consideration! But there was more startling news! On the day of her dad’s memorial service halfway around the world, Susan learned that her mother’s brother had just died. I was stunned by the incredible timing of the cumulative loss, and concerned for family members who barely had time to begin grieving the loss of one dear one before another weighed heavily on their heart  . . . and then another.

Some might see this as a cruel twist of fate but for me this cumulative loss bespoke a different story – a story of souls so intertwined that they departed earthly life within days of each other. Those reeling in the loss, mired in their grief may ask WHY. Others may question whether this incredible confluence was more than a coincidence. For me, there is a different question – whether the timing was planned so that we all would take note!

Many of us have known people who died soon after someone dear to them – spouses who died within days of each other; children, regardless of age, who died within weeks of their parent; or conversely parents who died within weeks of their children; close friends who died soon after each other. The coincidence, for those who still believe in coincidence, never goes unnoticed.

I have written before about the fact that as we make the plan for an upcoming incarnation we look to members of our soul family to play important roles in the life to come. Many of us know intuitively the members of our soul family by their importance in our lives, the profundity of the lessons they have taught us and even the healing that has taken place consequent to our relationship with them. A surprise to most is the fact that biological family members are not necessarily members of one’s soul family. But when they are, the bonds may seem unbreakable.

For those who understand the soul planning process, such closely timed departures are not as much a surprise as they are a beautiful reminder of the strength of the love that eternally binds souls to each other. In order to accomplish our soul’s purpose for each lifetime we need the help and support of members of our soul family. We need our soul family to engage in the ‘play of life’ / Lila that we have crafted for ourselves. We need protagonists and antagonists to assume the roles that will provide myriad opportunities for learning, healing and balancing of karma. Who better to turn to as we plan each incarnation than the members of our soul family – eternally bound in love?

When you look back on your life, reflecting on some of the most difficult lessons that you have learned or the most painful situations or relationships that have prompted you to heal, you can be certain that the other ‘cast members’ in your Lila are members of your soul family. The more intimate the member of your soul family, the more likely s/he will be to assume a role in your life that causes you pain. So if you haven’t realized it yet, rest assured that even your most despised adversary, the love who abandoned you, and/or the person you believed has brought the most hardship into your life are souls who love you so deeply that they agreed at your behest to take on those difficult roles.

And perhaps with this understanding, if you have not already done so, you can find it in your heart to forgive them! . . .

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