Monday, January 18, 2016

A LESSON FROM THE ROSES



My assigned chore recently was pruning back the rose bushes surrounding our home.   How beautiful the roses are with their vibrant colors, their red and pink faces shining delicately out from the dark  green leaves, lovely to look at as they gently share their fragrance and loveliness. 
  
As I worked carefully among the branches an interesting  thought came to me. The roses display their beauty confidently and don't seem inclined to try to convince the other flowers to be just like them.  They grow alongside the other flowers around our home without comment, without competition, without criticism, without bragging or gloating.

I suppose these thoughts may have been triggered by a recent encounter where a gentleman was trying to convince me to embrace his  religious thought.   While there was no specific criticism of my own religious understanding or my view of God and Life, it was pretty obvious from the stern looks and rather harsh warnings about God’s wrath and my obvious unwillingness to understand that God punishes people like me, revealed a  contempt for my “obvious ignorance” and misguided faith and understanding.   

The experience sort of shocked me, made me wonder, Have  I done the same thing from time to time?  Surely not as harshly or pointedly,   accompanied by the stern looks and sense of judgement that I was receiving this day, but have I been so judgmental?   Being convinced of the truth and simple logic that Jesus revealed in his teachings and as taught in Christian Science,   and because of wanting to share the wonderful healing effects realized by my family and myself over the years through the application of those truths, I admit I may have been tempted to spend time convincing others of how wonderful it is.

But on this day, marveling at the beauty of the rose, I remembered Mary Baker Eddy's counsel that : " 
No reproof is so potent as the silent lesson of a good example. Works, more than words, should characterize Christian Scientists. Most people condemn evil-doing,evil-speaking; yet nothing circulates so rapidly: even gold is less current. " (1.)



  
I thought how silly it would be for that Rose to bend down to the beautiful Daylily to convince her to become a Rose, maybe something like this: 
“Well, yes Dear, you would have a few thorns but everyone would want to take you home and put you in a vase.  We roses are wonderful!!  We make lovely gifts for birthdays, anniversaries and are especially helpful to a young man courting a young lady!!   I expect we are responsible for many hugs!!  We are God's favorites!”  

No indeed, the roses seemed very content to glow their particular splendor in the midst of the variety of other fauna.  No conversion speeches needed!!  Just by being there, sharing their lovely fragrance and delicate beauty,  glorying in the sunshine, swaying in the gentle breeze, seemed to be quite enough to keep the Roses happy.  I could see and feel that simply by “Being” they were uplifting and demonstrating God’s presence as “all harmonious”.  

It is believed that roses have been around for over 35 million years, according to fossil evidence.   Maybe they have lasted that long by minding their own business, fulfilling their life purpose  just by being splendid and appealing.    

Matthew 5
That realization convinced me that it would be sufficient  for me, too,  to just do my very best to demonstrate the qualities that I am trying to live, those same qualities we find in the Beatitudes: humility,  love, mercy, purity, tenderness,  peace and righteous and  let the observer judge whether that is something worthy of emulating. I have found it is difficult enough to do that without also trying to drag reluctant others along.

The Bible tells us there are a diversity of gifts,  some teachers, some preachers, some prophets, some wise,  some interpreters, and so on.
 (2)    Apparently we can all do whatever we are called to do.   There may be others on the human scene that are better looking, wealthier, more talented, more spiritual, funnier , better educated.    But for each there is opportunity to be “the rose” in their own garden of life. 

In his rounds, Jesus of Nazareth walked through the countryside and was available to teach and preach. But the most fascinating thing about Jesus was that he demonstrated more than he talked.  He didn’t get on a platform and threaten people to listen, to change or to follow him.  He proclaimed that “ behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”  ( 3)

 His acts of healing, uplifting and supporting were so much more compelling than words could be. Although his Beatitudes contained in the Sermon on the Mount provided such wonderful inspiration, it would  have been all for naught  if he wasn't actually demonstrating the truth that he taught. In humility, meekness and purity, he gently demonstrated the healing effect of his understanding of God, and taught his disciples to do so as well.

In her Bible companion book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,  religious pioneer Mary Baker Eddy writes: 

“Love, redolent with unselfishness, bathes all in beauty and light. The grass beneath our feet silently exclaims, “The meek shall inherit the earth.” The modest arbutus sends her sweet breath to heaven. The great rock gives shadow and shelter. The sunlight glints from the church-dome, glances into the prison-cell, glides into the sick-chamber, brightens the flower, beautifies the landscape, blesses the earth.  Man,  made in His likeness, possesses and reflects God’s dominion over all the earth. Man and woman as coexistent and eternal with God forever reflect, in glorified quality, the infinite Father-Mother God.” 

As we follow the spirit of Jesus’ Beatitudes, we can trust others to God’s loving care.

Jesus said: “Follow me.”  


(1.)     Miscellaneous Writings .. page 126
(2.)     I Corinthians 12:
(3.)     Luke 17:12
(4.)     Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures 516


Friday, January 1, 2016

Hee Haw

             
 Click to hear "Agony"!!!!!!!!!!   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAAKPJEq1Ew
(Prepare Yourself!!!  It ain't purty!!!)

Recently while I was relaxing for a few minutes before the TV, a rerun of a silly old TV comedy show from some years back started playing.   Those who remember the late 1960s may remember Hee Haw as a show centered on country music, rural culture and corn pone humor  featuring country music and humor with fictional rural Kornfield Kounty as a backdrop.  
  
One of the weekly skits featured four  backcountry “hillbillies”  with their jugs  of moonshine  singing a depressing song expressing their gloom,  despair and hopelessness.   Years ago when I saw that show the scene was funny and brought down the house.  But through time and experience I have seen that it wasn’t too much of an exaggeration for some. 

You may remember the words:

Gloom, Despair, Agony on me;
Deep, Dark, Depression, excessive misery! (Ohhhh!)
If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all, (Ohhhhh!)
Gloom, Despair, and Agony on me…..

 What a contrast that gloom and misery is to our Christmas rejoicing, the promise of the appearing of the Christ spirit.… “Joy to the World!! The Lord is Come! 

As a sort of a wake-up call I wanted to shout out to all who are downhearted or fearful that there is no “decree” as from Caesar that we are sentenced to punishment, to suffering and distress.  No obligation to hang on to sad memories of the past, be burdened by worries of today nor fear the future.  And our lives need not be years of slogging wearily through daily life without joy in our hearts.  And we can sing happy songs without the support of “moonshine” or other material means to find  solutions which bring  peace and joy into our experience.

Throughout all time many have experienced those moments,  sometimes years of sadness, gloom and despair that seem overwhelming, particularly at Christmas and the turning of the New Year.   While many are celebrating the holidays, others sit alone, frightened,  maybe due to the loss of a loved one, a  break in a loving relationship, lack of employment, fear of the future or other thoughts that bring them down.


More and more we are realizing through our own experience and also with recent discoveries in Quantum Theory by physical scientists that we create our world in our own thought. Jesus consistently changed the human view, the gloomy conditions through understanding.  For example: Weizmann Institute of Science recent  highly controlled experiment in Quantum Theory demonstrated that observing actually changes the result of an experiment; that  the greater the amount of "watching," the greater the observer's influence on what actually takes place.

Centuries ago Jesus of Nazareth, who certainly faced many situations which would be discouraging,  overcame, uplifted, healed and blessed those he met. His counsel was “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.”  (John 14)  

These were not just reassuring words, Jesus demonstrated what he taught or he would have been seen as just another philosopher.  His works of healing, were proofs of his understanding of God as our life.   At the tomb of his dear friend who had passed away, gloom seemed to overwhelm him for just a moment and… He Wept.  But,  death was defeated by  his understanding that gloom and despair are like ground fog, that when we rise up and lift up our head above the fog, we see more clearly where before we were blind to  our surroundings. As we lift up our thought we begin to understand  the eternality of life.  

His Spiritual view changed the material scene, Joy replaced the gloom, his understanding that Life is eternal replaced the shadow of fear and death; his Love, understanding and trust drove out the despair.

A friend of mine, as we discussed spiritual healing once said, “Well, that was Jesus.  We aren’t Jesus”!   Then I shared that Jesus not only healed but taught his disciples to heal and they went two by two out into the country and performed great works of healing and that we too were challenged to heal and uplift. 

The Bible tells of his direction to a group of seventy followers: 
After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come.   
Therefore said he unto them….

And into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you:  And heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.

And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.”   (Luke 10:)

 Mary Baker Eddy, religious pioneer and founder of the Christian Science movement discovered that as we develop Spiritual sense we can overcome a material sense of life and heal as Jesus and the Disciples did.  She said:
“Spiritual sense is intuition, hope, faith, understanding, fruition.
Material sense is human belief, fear, doubt, despair. “
Eddy. 
 
(From Christian Science Journal Oct 1886) 

Jesus counseled:   “Don’t get lost in despair; believe in God, and keep on believing in Me.    I tell you the truth: whoever believes in Me will be able to do what I have done, but they will do even greater things, because I will return to be with the Father.”  (John 14) 

A poem by Eddy sums up the healing power of God on the human scene and leaving gloom, despair and agony  behind as we rise up into Spiritual sense:

Communion Hymn
Saw ye my Saviour? Heard ye the glad sound?
Felt ye the power of the Word?
’Twas the Truth that made us free,
And was found by you and me
In the life and the love of our Lord.

Mourner, it calls you,—“Come to my bosom
Love wipes your tears all away,
And will lift the shade of gloom,
And for you make radiant room
Midst the glories of one endless day.”

Sinner, it calls you,—“Come to this fountain,
Cleanse the foul senses within;’
Tis the Spirit that makes pure,
That exalts thee, and will cure
All thy sorrow and sickness and sin.”

Strongest deliverer, friend of the friendless,
Life of all being divine:
Thou the Christ, and not the creed;
Thou the Truth in thought and deed;
Thou the water, the bread, and the wine.

God Bless You and Happy New Year!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

PEACE… AND LETTING GO OF THE CONTROLS



Sometimes current events in the human situation cause us to lose a sense of peace and comfort.   When we read of terrorism, workplace violence, corruption and any number of troubling situations, we are tempted to lose our composure, our sense of peace and security,  and act out behavior that doesn’t reflect who we really are.     A recent short article by a dear friend, Laura Moliter,CS   on maintaining a sense of peace reminded me of an incident that I had some years ago flying a light airplane. But first, I invite you to read Laura’s inspiring words.

Only God gives inward peace, and I depend on him.”
(Psalms 62: 5, Contemporary English Version)

We all naturally seek peace. We know that we function with more freedom and are able to think more clearly and act more wisely when we are peaceful. We can attempt to gain that serenity, that quiet confidence, in many human ways. We can seek another’s opinion to assure us or look for a situation to change in order to feel better.

But these assurances can be variable and conditional. The outward may change but the inward composure is not truly there, real, and lasting. God, divine Love, alone can give us this “inward peace.” This is our true reliance and He is faithful to us. God’s presence  is  peace, and He is everywhere, actively being and expressing goodness, comfort, Life, and Love.

Mentally step away from the mortal mind’s conversations and complications. Listen to God’s voice of what is real and true—the genuine condition of things as He caused them to be. Give up the need to seek peace through material means and people and circumstances. Your loving God is at the ready, deep within, revealing His presence in your heart and His wisdom in your thought. Receive the richness of peace without argument. It is yours freely, now and always.

Laura’s article on letting God bring a sense of peace reminded  me of a lesson in “Letting Go” that I learned while learning to fly. 



I was piloting a small 4 place Aero Commander aircraft flying out of Dayton Ohio.    One day, early in my training, the air was pretty turbulent. In the light plane you notice turbulence more than in a large airliner. As I flew  the air currents juggled me around, the left-wing would dip down, then the right wing would dip, the plane was rocking from side to side as the turbulence affected the aircraft.  

As an astute and eager young pilot, wanting to impress my instructor that I was ready to “solo”,  I was furiously correcting the rocking with the controls, adjusting every two seconds trying to maintain level flight. I glanced over at Gary, the instructor and a very experienced pilot,  who was cruelly laughing at my plight and my solution!!  

He finally said, “Pat, just take your hands off the wheel.”

Of course I did as he suggested and it was amazing. The wings were still going up and down, the plane gently rocking in the turbulence,  but correcting itself and the trusty Commander 100 maintained level flight without all the human effort I had been expending to remain stable. The wings were not going up and down any more than they had before but I was able to sit back relax with my hands off of the controls and let the aircraft just fly in peace. It felt like the plane was smiling and loved being left alone to do it’s job.

I suddenly felt that PEACE that comes from letting go of the controls as Laura described.  We can FEEL that PEACE when we trust God, our Father, the Creator of the universe to govern our lives, letting go of the need to force things, to impose human will, to "make it happen". 



What a lesson that was for me. I still sometimes must relearn it over and over, not in an aircraft but in life.    But then I remember those flying days and how without my human intervention, the plane flew on a steady course easily handling the small bumps and updrafts.   It was a good example of how, in like manner,  when we take our hands off of the controls, dropping human will and outlining, we can trust the Father to keep our human wings and life level as we soar life’s’ airways.

The Bible has the prescription for overcoming turbulence and upheaval in our human activity.  It is “letting go of the controls” and embracing a spiritual sense of existence as Galatians 5 has it:   But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

A hymn in the Christian Science Hymnal (216)  gives also us reassurance…
O he who trusts in God’s protection
And hopes in Him when fears alarm,
Is sheltered by His loving-kindness,
Delivered by His mighty arm;
If ye God’s law can understand,
Ye have not builded on the sand.

O wait on Him with veneration,
Be silent in humility;
He leads you after His own counsel,
His will is done and still shall be;
All good for you His wisdom planned;
O trust in God and understand.



PEACE BE UNTO YOU. (Christ Jesus)
*******************************************************************
Article: Only God gives inward peace, and I depend on him.” Psalms 62:5
By: Laura Moliter, CS Christian Science Practitioner
www.beingfreenow.com
www.lamolitercs.wordpress.com

Friday, November 6, 2015

AVOIDING THE MONSTER


Halloween, a sort of mish-mash of pagan customs and a derivative of a Christian holiday in celebration of the dead has come and gone in the United States.   Children in costumes impersonate and take on the character of ghosts, angels, superheroes and monsters, going door-to-door looking for treats..


I still remember how years ago, as a young and impressionable youngster, I wanted to dress as the Frankenstein Monster.  I was transfixed during, and frightened long after seeing, the movie version of author Mary Shelley’s story of Dr. Victor Frankenstein who created a monster from body parts.  He was obsessed by the desire to create a man using body parts from cadavers and giving it life.

FRIGHTENING MONSTER MOVIE

We shivered in our seats as the strange Doctor and his assistant went to cemeteries at night, secretly dug up graves, scavenged body parts and then reassembled them in the scariest castle and the most frightening environment imaginable to a young boy.



 In the years since that time, I have often thought that in some fashion we, today, still try to achieve what Dr. Frankenstein dreamed of.  What seemed so eerily outlandish and impossible those years ago are now becoming possible. Medical science has witnessed the development of artificial replacements for body parts including legs, arms, hip and knee joints, even growing skin tissue and manufacturing replacement hearts. While these dedicated doctors may not be visiting cemeteries to harvest parts, they do use cadaver bones for grafting and organs donated by thoughtful givers upon their death, to be given to fortunate recipients.

For many who are in need of these new techniques, the replacement of defective or injured body parts with working replacements must be a wonderful blessing. So many people today are enjoying freedom and relief as the result of these technological advances.   But it is well, while being grateful for the progress made, to also be aware of what life is really all about and not to dwell too much on the body as the key to happiness.

As Dr. Frankenstein discovered, seeing life as merely a collection of body
EACH HEART CRIES OUT FOR LOVE AND MEANING
parts, an “assembled” material body without a "soul" or reflection if the Spirit, can backfire.  The spiritual essence of the real man is not seen by the eye.   While his own creation, a huge ugly creature, was not at all attractive and had a disastrous end, even a beautiful body, perfectly proportioned, all parts running smoothly, though we all may desire that, doesn’t insure happiness, success and joyful existence.   We too must beware of creating a “Monster”, the belief that happiness is found in the material body.!!

As usual, the Holy Bible gives guidance.  It is incredible that a record two thousand years old can still guide us today.   With his deep insight, and understanding the need to see through the seeming physical attributes of man, Jesus of Nazareth said:   “Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? (1)
Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? “(2)

His understanding of man as spiritual, a reflection of God expressing in a tangible way God’s love, tenderness, goodness, intelligence, peace and joy, none of which are physical, took him to a higher plane.  His own pure thought, uplifted and reflecting God’s perfection, healed and restored the body through a spiritual understanding of reality.

In her Bible Companion book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy counsels: “If we look to the body for pleasure, we find pain; for Life, we find death; for Truth, we find error; for Spirit, we find its opposite, matter. Now reverse this action.  Look away from the body into Truth and Love, the Principle of all happiness, harmony, and immortality. Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts.” (3) 

Maybe a better way of thinking of the body then is as a “delivery vehicle” for spiritual qualities such as love, tenderness, caring and sharing.  We can appreciate the body parts as implements to heal, to serve others as we look beyond the “Monster of Self”, and begin seeing body parts as spiritual tools, avoiding the constant “taking thought for our body” as the source of life and happiness.

HELPING HANDS - REACHING OUT


We can start by asking, “Are my hands helpful to others?
Are my arms embracing others in Love?
Are my eyes seeing the good, the pure and the beautiful or are they critical and judgmental? 
Are my feet running to help another? 
Are my ears hearing God’s direction and guidance in that “still, small voice”?
Is my heart the center of love?
Do I live and move and breath the atmosphere of Spirit?

As found in Isaiah, "Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?" (4)

This loved hymn spells it out!!

Take my life, and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days,
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.
Take my hands, and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love.

Take my feet, and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee.
Take my voice, and let me sing
Always, only, for my King.
Take my lips, and let them be
Filled with messages from Thee.

Take my every thought, to use
In the way that Thou shalt choose.
Take my love; O Lord, I pour
At Thy feet its treasure store.
I am Thine, and I will be
Ever, only, all for Thee.  (5)
   

1.)  Matthew 6:31
2.)  Matthew 6:27
3.)  Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures – Mary Baker Eddy  p 260
4.)  Isaiah 2:22

5.)  Christian Science Hymnal 324

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Finding Peace at the Al Bustan Palace




Al Bustan Palace Hotel - Muscat, Oman

Ofttimes lessons and uplifting ideas come to us most unexpectedly.   It seems that when we are least prepared for inspiration or the opportunity to learn new lessons, they come quickly and have tremendous impact..


Some years ago, managing an information technology consulting company out of Kuwait, an opportunity arose to establish a startup office in Oman, in the capital city of Muscat. Coincidentally, soon after we opened that office Oman held its first ever computer and information technology show.  

Jumping at the opportunity to be at the show and to demonstrate several innovative products that we were marketing in the Middle East, we agreed to participate.    . One such product was a circuit board for personal computers  that facilitated the keyboard switching between Arabic text and English text. It was quite novel and we had tied it with a very popular database software which were also marketing, in addition to our consulting services.

The first eye-opener of the day came while  speaking to the Minister of
Awni, Pat and Peter with the Minister of Information
Information and his entourage. As we told them about our technology, a sort of a bird's eye view, an overview of the multi-cultural scene came to my thought.  Standing there with me, an American student of Christian Science,   were Peter,  a Lutheran from Copenhagen Denmark,  Awni, a Palestinian Christian resident of Bethlehem who partnered with my company, and Omani officials, Muslims,  and other attendees from India, Pakistan and other countries. 

As we conversed, sharing thoughts on technology and describing our
products to the Omanis and other attendees of different religions and nationalities in the group, it seemed like a wonderful harmonious example of how people of different backgrounds can actually live and work together.

Later that day, not having yet moved into my apartment in Oman, we checked into the Al Bustan Palace Hotel,  a beautiful facility, sort of the pride of Oman.    

Dinner in the hotel in the evening featured huge buffet tables set in the area by the swimming pool and close to the beach.  Many people were already there and surprisingly there was a long line of people, all wearing tuxedos, and there were few people with the traditional Omani dress, the "dishdasha" and mussar or kummah headdress.    


Joining the buffet line at the very end, behind the line of tuxes,  I was intrigued by the man ahead of me.  Very distinguished looking and a commanding presence, he looked so familiar.   I couldn’t recall where I had seen him.   Perhaps he had been here before on a previous visit it was obvious he was with the snazzy group and there hadn’t been a bunch of tuxedo-ed people here on my previous visits.   

Curiosity won out and as I reached out to shake hands, told him that  as someone who  had visited this hotel a number of times I was curious about the  group who are now serving themselves at the buffet.  He smiled kindly and introduced himself as the conductor of the Israeli Symphony. He was a very well-known man and had performed in the United States many times and familiar to classical music lovers around the world.   I KNEW it!!  That’s who he is!!!

Imagine, the entire Israeli Symphony was here, in Oman, in an Arab
Sultan Qaboos bin Said
country.  The conductor smilingly told me that Sultan Qaboos,  the Ruler of Oman, loves classical music and invites the Symphony to play occasionally.    Sultan Qaboos who was educated at Sandhurst Military Academy in England,  is very forward thinking and apparently a music lover.

After a pleasant but brief conversation I took my plate and sat down by myself. Reflecting on the unusual happenings of the day, thought wandered and pondered.   

Couldn't it be this way all over the world?   Does war and terror have to be practiced in the world?  How could the events of today be replicated throughout?  Can mankind “get over” the belief of many gods, many creators, different gods, no gods, “my god not your god”?   

Can man ever adapt the understanding that there is ONE creative force and learn to live harmoniously?  

Can we ever overcome contention, hatred, selfish interests? 

Can we demonstrate in a practical way the plea of Malachai (2:10)  ... Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us? why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother, by profaning the covenant of our fathers?

Can we begin at home and then spread love throughout the world?

In every religion of which I am aware, there is this understanding that God is Love and Peace.  Stated differently perhaps.  Different words.  Different interpretations.   But in each there is this longing to reach love, purity, peace.   So why do we have such a hard time harmonizing?

In her Bible companion book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy,, knowing that there is, can be, only one Creator regardless of human strife, petty contention, differing beliefs and  views of God, gave this encouraging view:

“One infinite God, good, unifies men and nations; constitutes the brotherhood of man; ends wars; fulfils the Scripture, "Love thy neighbor as thyself;" annihilates pagan and Christian idolatry, — whatever is wrong in social, civil, criminal, political, and religious codes; equalizes the sexes; annuls the curse on man, and leaves nothing that can sin, suffer, be punished or destroyed.”
Science & Health 340:23-29

As I sat there in the mild evening heat of Oman, enjoying a delicious buffet, joyous that I was having dinner with the Israeli symphony, in an Arab country, where Christians and Muslims and Israelis all were together harmoniously today, marveling at God’s goodness, I recalled  a hymn that we used to sing in the Methodist Church when I was young.  Written by William A. Dunkerley, under his pen name of John Oxenham, the hymn is as follows:

The United Methodist Hymnal

In Christ there is no east or west,
in him no south or north,
but one great fellowship of love
throughout the whole wide earth.

In Christ shall true hearts everywhere
their high communion find;
his service is the golden cord
close-binding humankind.

Join hands, disciples of the faith,
whate'er your race may be.
All children of the living God
are surely kin to me.

In Christ now meet both east and west;
in him meet south and north.
All Christly souls are one in him
throughout the whole wide earth.

As I retired for the evening in this beautiful hotel I was profoundly grateful for the demonstration that East and West met, and we are one!! 

Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift!!  ( II Corinthians 9:15)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

And the Best is LOVE








If you ever feel down and out, in a difficult relationship, facing medical problems, confused by the political static, the economy, frightened by the threats of terror, gun violence and war, or just wish for comfort and reassurance,  consider this message.  When Jesus of Nazareth encouraged us to "love one another" and counseled  "thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength" (Mark 12) it was not just a soothing placebo, it was practical truth for us to practice.  He taught that God IS Love... a real, operative, demonstrable and practical, active science that gives our lives meaning. And he promised that we can do the works that he did, and even greater.  (John 14:12) 


These selected verses that have helped me are from a poem by Christopher Wordsworth (1807–1885) and put to music in the Christian Science Hymnal (Hymn 173). A wonderful prayer for Love....


"Love is kind, and suffers long,
Love is meek, and thinks no wrong,
Love, than death itself more strong;
Therefore, Give us Love.

Prophecy will fade away,
Melting in the light of day;
Love will ever with us stay!
Therefore, Give us Love.

Faith will vanish into sight;
Hope be emptied in delight;
Love in heaven will shine more bright;
Therefore, Give us Love.

Faith and Hope and Love we see
Joining hand in hand agree;
But the greatest of the three,
And the best, is Love."


An excerpt from a wonderful daily blog by Christian Science Practitioner Laura Moliter, this morning brought that wonderful hymn to mind. Her words follow:


"We may feel at times as if we have thoughts and ideas that feel inspired and right, and yet they also seem unclear to us, confused, or fraught with challenges to their realization. Don’t give up on those right aspirations. Neither should you feel as if your life is without a distinct purpose, a right reason to keep walking forward with joy and expectation.


The seed doesn’t know what the flower will look like, and yet within that seed is the purpose to be a glorious flower, as nature would reveal. Trust Spirit, God, to know what the finished product of your goals and of your very life must look like. It must look like Him! Your Life is intended to reveal God’s qualities in a unique and wonderful and necessary way. It already is doing so and will continue to bloom, to surprise, and to delight.


Rest your worries and your frantic need to know exactly what tomorrow must bring, and let God reveal the very right thing at the very right time in the very right way. Enjoy this moment, treasuring God’s loving care for you and your goals. It is safe to pause with God, divine Love. His purpose is a promise and it is always natural to us, and yet holy, powerful, successful, and beautiful."



                       


Thanks Laura and Christopher for the wonderful comforting messages of God's Love!!  And to Christ Jesus for proving that Love is not just a word but a healing spirit.


Too late to contact Christopher but you can read more from Laura at:

Laura Moliter, CS
www.beingfreenow.com
www.lamolitercs.wordpress.com


Saturday, September 26, 2015

LOVE'S LITTLE LADY

I saw her again today. She is always in the same place every day, right at the edge of the roadway  when I go past on my walk.




I expect that most people don’t even notice her as they rush by in cars and trucks, and I wonder if that makes her sad.  She’s a beautiful little thing, even sort of perky with her yellow hair and uplifted face and it’s a pity that those who miss seeing her have lost a wonderful opportunity to experience true loveliness.

It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve passed by. I always stop and look, sometimes standing there for a few minutes just staring down at her, giving her well deserved admiration, a lot of smiles and a few compliments. Yes, I talk to her and a few of her friends growing nearby.  

What a wonderful example she is of persistence,  beauty and vitality. Her "home" is a dirt berm  within a few feet of the roadway, no fancy garden, no beautiful amenities.  I’m not even sure what type of little flower she is but she doesn't seem to worry about that and never complains..

Looking at her my thoughts are momentarily  lifted above worldly concerns, worry slowly vanishes. 
A peaceful feeling washes over me and I begin to realize that God is reflected in her little face, a promise that no matter my material sense of existence, the view of a world in conflict, sometimes sadness, sometimes  struggles, the sense of urgency in day-to-day situations that would argue "Hurry, Hurry, Worry, Worry"  fades away and a more tender view of God's endless Love fills my heart.


 I see her as a  sort of  a poster child for those dear ones that  are passed by every day as we rush about, self absorbed, often too busy to see and feel the beauty that surrounds us or the need to be noticed and appreciated by those who are ignored, almost invisible and unnoticed .


I am tempted to pick her and take her home, but she speaks silently to me. She insists that she is there for a purpose, well rooted in her mission.  She is a “sentinel” with a job to do,  not there to be a “possession”,  but a symbol of God’s everpresence, a beautiful idea  to remind us of Love’s  constant blessings.  She sings sweetly, "There is more to life than you know.  Life is eternal and beautiful.   Stop and smell the roses... and the little yellow flowers too"!!!

After our conversation, I bid her goodbye,  turn and keep walking down the road, refreshed. Thanks little friend!  Thanks Father.