A CAR'S overdrive gear provides a shaft speed greater than the engine's crankshaft speed, enabling the car to move forward without the use of extra energy. The feeling of freedom is exhilarating, as the miles speed by with the minimum of effort! But overdrive has another meaning, too--to drive or push something too far and too hard. And when this happens, especially in business, it often hinders productivity. In such an environment, bosses and employees alike may come under pressures that too easily subo rdinate sound judgment and creativity in the rush to get things done. On the other hand, when we are given important assignments, we need the capacity that will carry us forward to greater freedom and accomplishment.
How can people facing demanding work maintain their equilibrium? I've looked to Christ Jesus' life for direction in this regard. Jesus was a man who was constantly pressured to conform to the restrictions and conventions of the establishment of his day. And yet the Master's three-year ministry was a model of unparalleled achievement. What was the secret of Jesus' accomplishment? The Master understood that God was his employer, and he was always ready to do the will of his Father. In this obedience, he ga ined dominion over the world's pressures to conform to its ways.
The Scriptures emphasize that man is created by God in His image and likeness. The demands God makes on us are only those that enable us to express more fully the intelligence and wisdom that our heavenly Father has already bestowed on His offspring. Jesus' full compliance with God, divine Principle, empowered his healing work. His understanding of man's oneness with the Father called forth the pure spiritual love that heals sickness and frees from sin. The Christ, the spirit of Truth that Jesus embodied , breaks the false assumption that man is subject to mortality and disease--and presents man as Godlike, whole, and free.
Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, spells out the difference between human will and the divine power that motivated the Master's healing work, in these words from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: "Christian Science silences human will, quiets fear with Truth and Love, and illustrates the unlabored motion of the divine energy in healing the sick.
As we strive to subordinate our own will and personal drive to the divine power, the pressure to achieve worthy goals becomes less important than the desire to express more of the understanding and love that come from God. In reality there is only one divine Mind, God, the source of all intelligence, who shines through whatever is transparent to His wisdom and love. We can pray for the Christly clarity that helps us to be transparencies for truth. Turning to God for the ideas we need, we discover we have
the infinite resources of Mind to draw on. As we consciously express Godlike qualities--grace, humility, and spiritual perception--our work is achieved more efficiently and with greater clarity of thought.
We read in Luke's Gospel that after his forty days in the wilderness, when he overcame the tempter, Satan, "Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee. The Master proved that obedience to God's will supplies the spiritual energy that can never be depleted. We, too, can be truly empowered by this same divine Spirit. As we learn to align our thought and action with the divine will, we shall find renewed capacities for good in ever fuller service to God and our fellowman.
This is a condensed version of an editorial that appeared in the February 10 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel.