Saturday, January 28, 2012

Obedient


If we do what God wants us to,
we get His help.
If we don't,
we don't.
Isn't this the way it ought to work?
We can't His wishes shirk
and expect all to go well.
Disobedience will tell --
in vexation, disappointment,
things not unfolding as they should.
And could be,
if one were only obedient.
Think about this:
if Jesus had to be (and was) l00%
subservient to His Father's will,
where is there any escape for us?
How could the rules be waived,
God's will set aside for you and me?
But if I don't do it as I want,
I'll lose out, someone may say.
Oh no, you won't.
Our ever loving Father
knows what is best,
and living to please and obey Him,
we gain in every conceivable way.
Not just airy words these.
I know what I'm talking about.
Try doing it the Master's way,
and good will flow into your life
such that you may want to shout,
Oh, why wasn't I doing this before!

God has for all His children
such infinite good in store.

Friday, January 27, 2012

The cure for too much "me"




When Christ gains the ascendency,

self goes down to defeat,

at Jesus' feet,

where it deserves to be.

For this ugly customer

blocks the good we

otherwise might do.

So, don't go a day

without praying thus:

Dear Lord, let it be --

increasingly --

less of me,

and more of Thee.

Too much sermonizing,

do you think?

But this poem I have to do.

Saying any less,

would not to my God

be faithful, true.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

In a Sea of Smut

There I was one day in a national bookstore chain in our town, glancing through the poetry section when this title jumped out at me.  What was it? you may want to ask.  There on the shelf before me was this regrettable volume:  "Talking dirty to God"!  Shocked that a writer would think of putting out a book of poems with such a title, equally shocked that this bookstore would carry such a thing, is putting it mildly. But it did impel some action on my part.  Stuff this foul needs to be countered, was my immediate thought, whereupon my first book, "For Love of Christ" - Collected Poems" was published.  And eventually carried by this bookstore chain.

Pornographic material where my books appear bothers me not a little bit.  Still, if just one thing in them throws a lifeline to some poor soul somewhere in the world struggling in a sea of smut, this is enough for me.

My Sunday School teacher who was also a Christian Science practitioner once told me that a businessman, a former pupil of hers, called her and said:  "Just talk to me about wholesome things!  This office I'm in is so polluted with filthy conversation, I need to hear something clean for a change."  People do tire of dirty talk, don't you feel?

In addition to other writing, posting much on the Internet as I do, people will ask me, how can you send out such lofty things, given what cyberspace can display?  I know what they mean.  The trash is pervasive. And yet, what inspires me on is this:  the motivation is to bless, to offer something clean and pure, something that encourages other writers to do their best -- not scale down to the lowest level so popular these days.  Further, shouldn't any follower of Christ Jesus want to do all he or she can to clean up the mental atmosphere?

And speaking of Jesus, I love this promise:  "Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you."  (John 15:3)  It never fails; it never will.  Those who live what our Lord and Master taught, those who stand up for God's precepts, can't help but enjoy a more refined environment. And preaching it wherever they find an opening, be a force for good in this world of ours, which heaven knows is a crying need.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Service -- With More Than a Smile



Service done with cold formality

Is service best not done at all.

For feel ye love for one another,

Is still Christ Jesus' call.



"A new commandment I give unto you,
That ye love one another; as I have loved you,
that ye also love one another."

(John 13:34)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Indebted

When I think of all that Christian Science has done for me and mine, it's clear to me its source has to be divine -- God-given, without a doubt.  The things I have seen, and felt, of His mighty power!  It makes me want to share the Good News, to assure you, readers of my blog, of the world of good you have in store if you do this one thing (well, two things actually):  obtain a copy of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy and ponder the powerful truths therein.

You can see your life change for the better beyond all imagining.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Putting God First

Not enough time in the day
To do the things you need to do?
Your priorities are out of whack.
Consider placing God's demands
Before other people's and your own.
Consider Christ Jesus, someone
Who was never flurried or worried,
Who was always on time for healing.
Why was this, do you think?
Could one reason have been,
"I do always those things that please him,"?
(John 8:29)
A holy example, this.
But something all can shoot for.
Even the willingness to pray,
May this day be lived the way,
Heavenly Father, You know is best
Will begin adjusting circumstances
As only God can do.
There will then be enough time
For Him -- first don't forget --
And time enough for you.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Perplexed? Mind Never is

Can anything that can (and does) come up in our day to day baffle the Creator of all?  The answer is obvious.  He can clear it up -- whatever the conundrum seems to be.

God can bring to light solutions that we, unaided, just cannot see.  The Old Testament says, "In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."  Besides doing what an obedient child of His should be doing, it makes sense to me to be turning ever more to the One divine Mind for help.

More than once lately when we've faced a serious problem and had no idea what to do, God showed us a way out that I'm sure we would never have thought of.  So thorough was the resolution, it was like someone dotting the "i" and crossing the "t", so to speak.

I recall some years ago when a business situation had me in a tight corner, I happened to mention this to a Christian Science practitioner, a close and wise friend.  "Whom can I take this problem to?", I asked him.  "Why not take it to God?", my friend suggested.  At that stage in my spiritual growth, this seemed a radical step.  But, of course, he was on the right track.  And in the intervening years, I've learned that superior -- and quicker -- answers come when we acknowledge God's wisdom and power.  And trust in it.

The man I just spoke of, as have I, have gained from a study of Christian Science what its Founder and Leader, Mary Baker Eddy, brings out in her writings about God as the ever-present, all-knowing, all-loving, always available divine Mind.  And I for one cannot imagine going through life without this supreme, governing Intelligence to turn to when feeling perplexed.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Our Wonderful Father



When I think of all that

God can bring us through,

I can't help feeling awestruck

At the saving things He can do.



Do with such power and love,

Which helps me not fear or fret --

As Jesus commanded us not to do --

Finding that my every need is met.



What are some of the things

That I've been delivered from?

Illness, lack, worry, bodily harm,

Just to give an idea of some.



Whatever the problems we face,

It is Biblically-proved, undeniable fact

That our heavenly, loving Father

Can bring us through intact.


So, since I'm writing this to praise and honour You,
Thank You for all the wondrous things You do.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Love and Comfort God Gives

The prophet says of God's tender care, "As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you."  (Isaiah 66:13)  Who of us at times hasn't longed for the kind of loving support a wise parent gives his child?  Even though carefree, happy days may be far behind, we don't have to forgo love and comfort.

Many passages throughout the Bible reveal God as the tender guardian of all.  And Christ Jesus, who was ever conscious of God's unfailing care for His children said, "He thaht sent me is with me:  the Father hath not left me alone."  (John 8:29)  The Father's constant, mothering love is still at hand for all who yearn for heavenly help in life's challenges.

Many of us who have felt overwhelmed in the face of daily challenges have found strength and healing through the study of Christian Science.  Its Discoverer and Founder, Mary Baker Eddy, writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures:  "Father-Mother is the name for Deity, which indicates His tender relationship to His spiritual creation.  As the apostle expressed it in words which he quoted with approbation from a classic poet:  'For we are also His offspring.'"  (p. 332)

Since man is God's offspring, His image, as the Bible reveals, our actual being is spiritual and perfect, continuously reflecting the Father's love.  This is true of us all.  We're not, then, helpless before lack, sorrow, disease.  These discords, which can seem so real to us at times, stem from ignorance of man's inseparable relationship to God, divine Love.  (Or forgetting these things momentarily when problems arise.)  And they're corrected by spiritual understanding.

As Jesus proved repeatedly in his healing work, suffering is no part of God's perfect creation.  Rather, it is a phenomenon of the physical senses, much like the bad dream a child has at night--disturbing to him, yet not real to the loved one awake at his side.  And what comfort the child feels when he wakes up and sees that he is not along and there is nothing to fear.

Acknowledging man's unity with God, who knows and imparts only good, awakens us to the truth of being.  It brings our consciousness into line with the harmony of spiritual perfection, and this mental change brings freedom.  Even bodily ills disappear before the recognition that God, good is always present and supreme.

No mother, however loving and devoted she may be, can be present with her child at all times and under every circumstnace.  But the heavenly Father-Mother God, can be and is.  As children of infinite, divine Love, you and I have continuous access to its unfailing, inexhaustible, exquisitely comforting care.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Some Thoughts on Retirement

The woman sitting down the bench from me that day told me she had just retired.  "I don't know what to do all day.  There's not enough to fill the hours", she lamented.  An air of boredom, almost dejection, hovered over her.  How very sad, I thought.

Although decades away from so-called retirement myself, something about this woman made me think.  "I'm never going to give up an active life", I vowed.  And I haven't.

With so much to learn and see and do in life, why shut ourselves down?  As Arthur Fiedler, the long-time conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra once said in an interview, "He who rests, rots."  And Albert Schweitzer wrote:  "The great secret of success is to go through life as a man who never gets used up."  Both these pieces of advice from men who led a very productive life in their later years have stayed with me.

After all, age is so mental, don't you think?  I've known individuals who were quite young in years who already had an aspect about them of being out to pasture, so to speak.  And conversely, those inspiring men and women who not only acted youthful; they looked that way.  How could they not, given their lives of meaningful activity and usefulness to their communities and often the whole world?

When it comes to the subject of retirement, one finds divided feelings--some for, some vehemently against.  To one person, retirement conveys the picture of long-awaited leisure; to another, the dread of enforced idleness, unhappiness, and loss of purpose.

But whether one's personal preference is for a rest or for continued activity, he could scarcely look forward to experiencing what the dictionary says about "retire", which is, in part, to "retreat", "recede", or "withdraw."

It isn't only the person who is retiring from business after decades of service who faces the lurking foe of uselessness.  This challenge also cuts into that segment of society composed of younger people.  For example, veterans back from current engagements in the military can feel retired even though they have yet to begin their life's work.

And housewives who have not spent one day within the walls of business can feel a haunting emptiness. They may find that wanting to be a conscientious wife and mother does not along bring the total fulfillment they were educated to expect.  And this can sometimes almost make them feel retired against their will.  Some think the solution is to go out and get a job.  But then they learn that just as many office workers experience the same discontent.  No, something more is needed.

When the feeling of "What am I really living for?" overtakes one, this may be an indication that he is actually ready to think about helping others, doing more good in the world, forgetting about self so much.  And goodness knows, the opportunities that lie down this road are vast, for a person who is mentally and physically able to be up and doing.

I'm so grateful to have learned in Christian Science that there is one activity that needs us permanently:  reflecting God.  Our employment is to bear witness to unending Life and Love, and this activity never terminates.  God's perfect idea, man, is never for a moment kept from reflecting God. 

We read in the New Testament, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
(II Timothy 2:15)

One need look no further than this to find all the activity and purpose he can handle.  The pursuit of spiritual understanding is, of itself, a full-time activity and it leads to increased harmony, supply, and satisfaction in our everyday experience.  While human activities sometimes fluctuate, dwindle, and come to a close, spiritual ones constantly expand.  Gaining and practicing spiritual truths bring opportunities to acquire still more discernment--and ways to put it to use.  Can one, for instance, run out of others to bless?

It isn't uncommon for advanced thinkers who have grasped the importance of making a difference to mankind -- especially those who are students of Christian Science and are learning of man's spiritual, ageless, eternal selfhood -- to continue in a useful, satisfying enterprise for years.  And they often find a completely new line of endeavor.  Their lives prove that it is never too late for one who understands that he has God-given talents that could be being put to good use for the welfare of others.

God's idea, man, simply must be useful, for he reflects the endless activity of God, infinite Mind.  Suggestions that he isn't--or will not be--are mere false beliefs, and therefore can be disproven.  Christ Jesus said, "I must be about my Father's business."  (Luke 2:49)  And so must you and I.

Those men and women I admire, benefactors of mankind all--the Leader of my Church, Mary Baker Eddy, being foremost among them--did not find a cushy chair and put their feet up (figuratively speaking, that is.) 

So, here's to greater usefulness in the world--maintaining one's sense of wonder, adventure, excitement, expectancy.  With the knowledge of who we are as God's very reflection, we can look forward to ever-expanding horizons, to satisfying activity that never ends.

Being More Productive


There's much I want to get done today, and my work?  to leave some things by the way, and accomplish the rest, so that more of His children may be blest.  To help with this, I thought of this gentle reminder Jesus made to a follower one day:

"Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:  but Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her."
(Luke 10:41, 42)

When I think of all the time that has been wasted that could have been devoted to better things!  Well, I can see, I must deal firmly with mundane things that get in the way -- definitely with one thing:  people who tie me up in long-winded conversations benefitting mostly themselves.

With my Master's pointed reminder before me, this day -- and year -- will be different. 

And this from Mary Baker Eddy:  "People with mental work before them have no time for gossip about false law or testimony." Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, page 238

And this bit from a friend in Scotland who shared this expression:  "After all's said and done, there's a lot more said than there is done."

How Wonderful...

...it is to get to blog on my favorite topics:  Christ Jesus and Christian Science. 

I can't wait to see what thoughts God will give to me, to give to you.

And here's to a truly new New Year for us all, filled with increased spiritual

understanding of Him, greater subservience to His will, and devotion to

Christ's work.  And most important of all,  much more love for our heavenly

Father and for His children.


With life in Christ, progress/newness/adventure are a sure thing.