Posted in Current events & community, Future/stability/security, Life, Love/relationships

What is real progress?

What is real progress?

Is it a bigger house, car, more financial stability, etc?

Progress is the maturing conception of divine Love; –Mary Baker Eddy

Collective progress is really about spiritualizing consciousness. About gaining more of the true, unconditional, all inclusive sense of divine Love that uplifts and blesses. As humanity gains clearer views of this spiritual love, fear and anxiety diminish, and peace reigns. It’s not about each person taking their corner on peace. But about the kingdom of heaven reigning in us and the spiritual peace which accompanies that individually and collectively. This is transformative for humanity!

Gaining an inclusive sense of divine Love that kneels to wash each other’s feet — a symbol of humbleness — is a sign of self-sacrifice, true wisdom, and everlasting peace.

The rich in spirit help the poor in one grand brotherhood, all having the same Principle, or Father; and blessed is that man who seeth his brother’s need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another’s good.–Mary Baker Eddy

We can’t build safely on a false sense of what constitutes satisfaction, love, or peace. The human mind wants to see it’s somewhere out there and we have to work hard to attain it. But actually all we need is already provided for by God, and we see it as we awaken spiritually, realize the presence of good/God, and see God expressed inwardly and outwardly.

You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.–Matthew 5:8 The Message

This takes discipline and training of our mind! “Disciple” means student so as we strive to study and understand the kingdom of Love, we will start to see this kingdom expressed around us and experience this heavenly love.

When you look through green glasses, everything around use has a greenish tint. When you look through the lens of Love and Spirit, everything around you appears as lovely, loving, beautiful, compassionate, caring. You see everything and everyone as the offspring of God’s compassionate, all-embracing Love.

What happens when you look through the lens of fear? You see suspicion, distrust, doubt, anxiety, limited resources, etc.

The only thing we need then is to change our lens! A change of perspective. Openness, willingness, and receptivity to what God is seeing and doing.

Jesus showed us the nature of God by healing, restoring, providing, lifting up, and eliminating injustice. He showed us the nature of God. If we need a reality check, we can always look to him to gain the correct model of what is good, true and everlasting. This shows us how to live, love, and grow. It’s a true model for progress!

Jesus wasn’t very concerned with material things since he trusted in God, divine Love, who provided all he needed. He sent his disciples out without a wallet and recognized he didn’t have a material home. God provided for every human needed during his whole ministry.

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.–Matthew 6:31-33 ESV

So his primary focus was the reign of kingdom of God on earth; he stayed focused on his higher mission, and saw the fulfillment of all he had come to show us. What a beautiful example of keeping that higher goal before thought while living in the present moment and ushering in that awareness of the presence of God, divine Love.

We can follow this same model by having the realization of the kingdom be our big picture goal, while living those kingdom ideals moment by moment. By being open and receptive to seeing in news ways, we are bringing Christ into the big picture and into the minutiae of our day.

By purifying human thought, this state of mind permeates with increased harmony all the minutiæ of human affairs. — Mary Baker Eddy

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Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Posted in Future/stability/security, Life, Time/stress

Peaceful decision making

Is human will or divine will influencing you? That is an important first question to ask when faced with a decision to make.

One way I tell the difference is in how they feel. For me divine will feels like letting, allowing God to work in me, yielding. It often includes patience, gentleness, and humbleness. It feels very natural and beautiful — like a flower opening its petals.

Human will feels to me pushy, stressed, based on lack, rush, fear of missing out on good. It often pushes it’s way forward without allowing the right ideas to come forward, to grow, and mature. Sometimes it may involve feeling pressured.

This idea of letting and allowing God to work in us is something that is essential to our spiritual growth and progress. It is a feeling of oneness — allowing Spirit to move in you and with you. It is a natural component of spiritual discernment.

I can think of a number of times when discerning the divine will and yielding to it has led to blessings and a greater sense of satisfaction, fulfillment, and harmony.

When we wait patiently on God and seek Truth righteously, He directs our path.–Mary Baker Eddy

When faced with decisions, if one option feels more pushy than another that is my first clue to stop and be still and listen to my intuition. Often the option that is pushy or aggressive is not the option take. Its important not to try and take a step before God is leading you. Sometimes an idea might be good but it’s just not the right time such as a move or a career change. In these cases it’s best to be humble and patient and wait for God to open the way.

The wonderful thing is that it is God who works in us to will and do of God’s good pleasure, which is always good and beautiful.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

New blog name will be coming soon! You’ll notice a change if you follow this blog and in the subject line of your email notification. Stay tuned!

Posted in Current events & community, Future/stability/security, Women

Love. The only power.

I’m so grateful for the opportunity to attend and be a part of the planning committee for the 39th Annual Women’s Interfaith Conference in St. Louis, Missouri.

Two panelists, a younger and older generation, from the Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Baha’i faith traditions participated and shared stories and faith practices from their traditions that have inspired, encouraged, and challenged them to grow more spiritually. This event was filled with love, peace, and mutual understanding.

I’m grateful for events such as these to break down ignorance and fear of the “other” that leads to discrimination, prejudice, and hatred. With the hate crimes and prejudice that are on display around the world, it is important not to believe that living in fear of our neighbors is the answer or normative.

Instead, we are called to build bridges of understanding and empathy with fellow humans even if we don’t agree. More important than being “right” about our own opinions is the way we live with our neighbors/brothers/sisters by treating others the way we want to be treated.

This Bible statement is so valuable:

if we say we love God and don’t love each other, we are liars. We cannot see God. So how can we love God, if we don’t love the people we can see? 1 John 4:20

Sometimes it’s easier to love God than to love people. After all God is perfect Spirit and Love who doesn’t cause any evil or discord. Pretty easy to love a Being like that! As hard as it can be, I’m beginning to see that my love for God has to be expressed by my love for my neighbors, even those with other political viewpoints and who live differently than I do. Love has to be big enough to include everyone.

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus responds to the question “who is my neighbor” by pointing out to his audience that the commandment of love for neighbor has to include foreigners, people from other countries who have different cultures and traditions than his own. How important and timely this message is! I love how relevant passages and stories such as these are.

When we had an incident with a neighbor in which the harmonious and peaceful state of our home was interrupted, it was tempting to act with frustration, indignation and self-justification. But as I prayed to find peace, reading Jesus example of living a life of fearless, inclusive love changed me. It showed me I had to overcome the desire to simply flee, but I had to respond with spiritual love and take a stand for man being the image and likeness of God. I found satisfaction, comfort, and a renewed sense of purpose in praying for my neighbors and seeing all of them through God’s eyes.

Imagine if every person on the planet stood guard over his and her consciousness filling it with love, peace, respect, interest in and care for others. Where would the hate go? It would disappear! “If mortals would keep proper ward over mortal mind, the brood of evils which infest it would be cleared out.” (Eddy, Science and Health, p.234) The more we keep our consciousness filled with light, love, and goodness, the more we will manifest. We can overcome fear of the “other” and understand we all have so much in common with one another.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

It’s important to teach this to our children as well. Hatred, ignorance, and prejudice do not have to be passed down generation to generation. We can teach and model what it means to be global citizens — to have respect and interest in those who are different than us: different skin color, places of worship, or different cultures. They are so receptive to goodness and naturally find much in common with their neighbors. It is so inspiring to be around children who love and express joy so easily. Children have a natural openness and curiosity about others that can be nurtured and encouraged.

As we strive to see everyone through the lens of Love, we will see more beauty and goodness in the world. We will see beautiful expressions of the Creator. As children of one Spirit, we are each naturally attracted to light, spirituality, joy, and love. Just like plants turn naturally towards sunlight, we can naturally turn towards the light of love. We are each the valuable and loved expressions of God and can share that love together today.