Saturday, January 31, 2015

A P.S. to Preceding Post

        Just happened to recall some thrilling words in a book I got from the Farragut Public Library that are causing me to pray more for this Cause of ours.  I immediately thought of Jesus' declaration, "Without me, ye can do nothing."  (John 15:5)

        "One of the principles most firmly maintained by Luther was that there should be  no resort to secular power in support of the Reformation.  He declared that 'doctrine of the gospel should be defended by God alone.  The less man meddled in the work, the more striking would be God's intervention in its behalf.'"

       "During the struggle at Augsburg, Luther did not pass a day without devoting three hours at least to prayer.  In the privacy of his chamber he was heard to pour out his heart before God in words 'full of adoration, reverence, and hope, as when one speaks to a friend  'I know that thou art our Father and our God' he said, 'and that Thou wilt scatter the persecutors of Thy children:  for all this matter is Thine, and it is only by Thy constraint that we have put our hands to it.  Defend us, then, O Father!'"

        "To Melanchton, who was crushed under the burden of anxiety and fear, he wrote:  'Grace and peace in Christ--in Christ, I say, and not in the world.  Amen.  I hate with exceeding hatred those extreme cares which consume you.  If the cause is unjust, abandon it; if the cause is just, why should we belie the promises of Him who commands us to sleep without fear?  Christ will not be wanting to the work of justice and truth.  He lives.  He reigns: what fear, then, can we have?'"

Let Us Not Forget...

        ....those of us who belong to Jesus Christ, this humbling statement:

        "I am the vine, ye are the branches:  He that abideth in me, and I in him the same bringeth forth much fruit:  for without me ye can do nothing."

        Certainly, as to being as successful in our divine service as our heavenly Father requires, abiding in Christ is essential.

        But I've been thinking of what Jesus says in the last few words of the above statement, "without me ye can do nothing" and how it applies to our staying out of range of the prince of this world. When our Master says "nothing", that is just what is meant. And it covers everything you and I do. For it is Christ's power alone that can cause Satan to yield, that can keep us safe from encounters we do not have to have.  If we think we can overcome the devil's wiles through our own efforts, we find out sooner or later that we can't.  This just won't cut it.  But when Christ's power is activated in our experience, results follow.

        Nothing is more crucial to a soldier of Jesus Christ than absolute reliance on His power, on establishing every single day that He is Lord and Master of everything that one does.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Not Afraid

        (With the recent stepped-up attacks on Western targets by terrorists, have been thinking about our staying safe wherever we go--to the office/store/bank/airport/train station--wherever we need to go in a given day. Thus, this poem.)

"Fear not," Be not afraid,"
our Lord and Master taught.
Christ's divine Science helps us
do what Jesus said we ought.
For we are God's and have His Mind,
our thoughts from Him reflected,
by His all-seeing wisdom directed.
Claiming and understanding this,
we are from harm and fear protected.

There is no fear in God
nor in His image, you and me.
Accepting this as gospel truth,
we cannot  help but see
truth do what Jesus said it would:

                    Expose fear's unreality,
                              Keep us unafraid,
                                      Make us feel so safe and free!

Christ-informed, spiritually enlightened,
we can have now rightful demonstration
of the unafraidness that belongs to all
as divine Mind's own manifestion.
For you and I are Mind-created and encompassed
              --held intact and dear--
and there is nothing in God's infinitude
for Mind's idea, man, to fear.


Sunday, January 11, 2015

Life-altering Words

        And the words I'm referring to here are those of Christ Jesus.  Just last week we heard a personal testimony to their life-altering power, and I know you will be uplifted, too.

        A family we've gotten to know and care about from Guatemala had supper with us.  And during the meal, the husband shared something we have not known in the 2 years of our friendship.  He said, "I'm not the man I once was.  Only a few years ago, I was getting drunk and getting into fights in public places, even getting arrested on disorderly conduct more than once."  This was such a surprise to us, as one couldn't find a more law-abiding, sober, reliable, sweet man than he is.  But the best part:  while he was in jail, someone gave him a Bible, in Spanish of course, which he began to look through.  The result was that he was absolutely taken with Jesus' teachings, so much so he quit drinking, had a complete transformation of his outlook on life, yearned to live in accord with what he was learning.  He added, with a look of happiness on his face, "I'm now a new man because of what Jesus said."

        Such is the power of our Lord and Master's words.


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Resenting and Its Impact on Health

        No right-thinking student of Christian Science would let resentment linger in his thoughts.  As our Leader, Mary Baker Eddy, writes in Prose Works, "Message for 1902":  "The Christian Scientist cherishes no resentment; he knows that that would  harm  him more than all the malice of his foes. Brethren, even as Jesus forgave, forgive thou.  I say it with joy, -- no person can commit an offense against me that I cannot forgive."

        And one of the ways resentment can do us in is in relation to our health.  I read something an early worker in our Cause once said, that he had found in long years of being in the public practice, he had found that almost all the bodily problems people were experiencing were caused by hatred in some form.

        Imagine letting a deadly snake loose to roam in our dwelling.  While the snake might not get us, letting resentment loose in our mental home eventually will. Sooner or later, lack of Christly loving and forgiving is going to show up in problems we do not have to have. No matter how offensive/insulting/mean -- you name it -- may be the behaviour of others toward us, we can't afford to resent it.  Disturbed thought needs to be gotten at as quickly as one can begin thinking correctly.   And because we are followers of Jesus and have his teachings to guide us, we can do it.

        1 John 4:16 puts i clearly:  "God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him."  The worse thing about not having love abiding in our consciousness is the sense of estrangement from Him that it causes.  This is a very unsafe place to be, and it isn't anything we have to let continue.With the armor of Christ's words, and no-fooling praying, we can keep our thinking where we know it belongs.  Our health and well-being depend on it.


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Be Sure You're Prayed Up

        This was said to me by a fellow Christian Scientist when I was getting ready to give a public talk. Being a life-long student of this religion, he applied its truths to every area of his life, no less so than when he was speaking in public.

        What he was reminding me of was this:  be sure you know Who it is that is in control of what you're about to do.  Make certain you know that God is governing the entire situation.  Then, you're assured that all will be harmonious.

        Christian Science teaches that the sole governing force of the universe, including man, is God, divine Principle.  He maintains His creation in perfect peace and harmony. There is never a moment when His divine law is not operating, nor can man be deprived of its power.  Man, God's child, is not subject to laws of chance, misfortune, or discord. God's law is good, supreme, and all-inclusive.  He does not share His power with another creator, for there is none.

        Christ Jesus furnished convincing proof of God's unerring government.  In accordance with divine law, he fed hungry thousands on a few loaves and fishes, stilled a raging sea, healed disease, insanity, and immorality, and even raised the dead--all in opposition to material law.  To be free from the insecurity, fear, and dread of a mortal outlook, one needs to know, as did Jesus, that he is always under God's control.

        Christian Science shows that because God, divine Principle, created all things in His own likeness, therefore spiritual and perfect, as the first chapter of the Bible points out, each one of us reflects His all-wise and loving jurisdiction.  An understanding of this eternal fact increases trust in God and banishes fear.  Acknowledging God's all-encompassing rule one finds greater harmony in even the smallest details of his day-to-day activities.

        Something Mary Baker Eddy says in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures has helped me many times, in many situations:  "Harmony is produced by its Principle, is controlled by it and abides with it."

        I hope it gives you food for thought.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

What Are We Listening To?

                                                         By: John Robert Howell

        Seasoned Christian Scientists know that any attempt to grow spiritually and burgeon in demonstration will be countered by a plethora of the Adversary's discouraging arguments.  One aim should be to dwell "home, home on the [spiritual] range...where never is heard a discouraging word." A recent phrase I came across caught my attention:  "to make yourself unavailable."  That reminded me of part of the generic message that is sometimes prerecorded on answering machines: "We are unavailable to take your call."  If all of us could learn to be always unavailable to meet with and listen to animal magnetism "in some one of the villages in the plain of Ono" it would be a boon.

        It is self-evident that if one consents to listen to, observe, react to, shrink in fear from, or argue with matter or any phase of materiality he cannot be free from the claims presented.  The angels came and ministered unto Christ Jesus after he had completely rejected each of the devil's temptations.  All true Christians and Christian Scientists should learn to listen only to those unheard sweeter melodies (Keats) which will "wake a white-winged angel throng/Of thoughts" (Mary Baker Eddy), and thereby divorce from the spiritual selfhood which they are proving day by day their "Earth-bound hearts" (Hymn #265).