Who determines our welfare?
Many free countries today are questioning the role of government as a provider for human welfare. Surely there is a legitimate role for government as a protector of the people. Yet dissatisfaction with government may reflect misplaced dependence on it for what a higher intelligence alone can supply.
Human systems of government, welfare states or others, have never been able to meet all the needs of citizens. In fact, they sometimes seem to create as many problems as they solve. The real solution is to find the spiritual basis of true welfare. Mary Baker Eddy n1 writes, "Happiness consists in being and in doing good; only what God gives, and what we give ourselves and others through His tenure, confers happiness: conscious worth satisfies the hungry heart, and nothing else can." n2
n1 Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science.
n2 Message to The Mother Church for 1902,m p. 17.
Christ Jesus showed the way to true security and happiness. He promised, "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." n3 Jesus was not offering something for nothing. He clearly pointed out what was required to win freedom from ignorance, fear, disease, or poverty: following his example of Christlike living. Many who listened to Jesus and observed first-hand the power of the Christ to heal shrank from this demand. They were too unwilling to let go of the status and security they had attained under traditional law to redirect their lives according to his teaching of radical reliance on God.
n3 John 8:31, 32.
The tendency to put material security and comfort ahead of spiritual values is just as common today. This is not because the Christ is unavailable to lead us to spiritual freedom, but often because we think we aren't good enough to follow the path of spirituality that Jesus charted. The cruelest lie ever imposed on humanity, and the greatest obstacle to our well-being, is the belief that man is naturally materialistic.
The history of this lie is metaphorically told in the story of Adam and Eve, found in the second chapter of Genesis. Mrs. Eddy writes, "Spiritually followed , the book of Genesis is the history of the untrue image of God, named a sinful mortal. This deflection of being, rightly viewed, serves to suggest the proper reflection of God and the spiritual actuality of man, as given in the first chapter of Genesis." n4
n4 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m p. 502.
In contrast with the myth of materially created Adam, this first chapter tells of man made as the reflection of God, Spirit. This is the eternal fact of each one of us. Christ Jesus showed us what it is like to understand and live in accord with this fact. Others who have understood it to a degree have been able to progressively enjoy the freedom and power to benefit mankind that go with it.
Claiming our spiritual nature gives us dominion over materialism. It frees us to express and be satisfied with such spiritual qualities as integrity, intelligence, and love. It also frees us from the suffering that goes with the suggestion that good can be found outside God.
Enjoying the freedom of spirituality is following Christ. More than just assuming a name, this following is a livingm process. It is learning to know and trust God as the Father-Mother who cares for all His children. It is desiring foremost the real treasures of right thinking and acting. It is being willing to do our best for the glory of God rather than for personal gain. And it is treating all men as partners, not competitors, in the paths of progress.
Such godly living gives us the sense of worth that is the key to real success , security, and happiness. Man is dependent on God for his welfare. Divine Love gives abundant, deeply satisfying gifts to man. Our looking to the right source for good, and cheerfully accepting the responsibility to live up to the goodness of our true nature, will secure our welfare to a far greater degree than human government ever could. DAILY BIBLE VERSE Trust ye in the Lord for ever. Isaiah 26:4