A friend once told me of an exercise he performed when training as an actor. Blindfolded, he had been instructed to proceed throuhg an obstacle cource. His initial reaction -- to extend his arms in search of obstacles -- resulted in his bumping into them, in bouncing through the cource from one obstruction to another. The key to smooth completion of the cource, he explained, was to reach for the free space, to follow his hands through the clear pathway.
This same concept has been helpful to me in dealing with daily problems. By dwelling less on a difficulty and turning instead to its solution, I am able to make more consistent progress in my life.
How does one do this, though, when tension, confusion, or stubbornness enters the scene?
Prayer that relies on the fact that God is omnipotent Spirit turns human thought from its self-imposed obstacles to the healing divine presence. In reality each of us is Spirit's reflection, freely following, expressing, God's intelligence and vision.
Christ Jesus' life and works offer abundant evidence that God's creation, including man, is spiritual and perfect. He said, "God is a Spirit," n1 and he restored diseased and crippled bodies to soundness.
Consider the implications of this. In Spirit, there can be no tension to limit peace or wisdom. As we grasp and live the implications of this marvelous fact, we'll find that confusion can't hinder our performance of necessary tasks, and stubbornness -- our own o others' -- can't block communication. Referring to God, John declared, "Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit." n2
n1 John 4:24;
n2 I John 4:13;
Identifying ourselves with God's spiritual creation is possible right now.m We can begin by replacing with the spiritual truth of man everything that would block the smooth flow of legitimate activity.
I recently applied these immortal truths to a situation at work and watched obstacles of tension and confusion dissolved.
Another staff member and I had begun a task without realizing we were supposed first to inform a certain manager in our institution. Our action triggered his resentment. He informed the director that he was going away temporarily. The director precipitated a meeting between the four of us -- and then left the room!
The only practical action for me to take was to turn to God, to affirm silently that we all actually were included in Spirit. I rejected the though that discordant human characteristics are legitimate and replaced it with the spiritual truth that man is the expression of divine Love, governed by God. I started reaching for that free space.
I replaced my own resentment with love. I exchanged tension for calm assurance that Spirit was in control. It wasn't easy, but through prayer I began to gain some peace of mind.
Then I listened for God's guidance.
After some silence, I commented on something the manager had said in an address to the institution not long before. It was irrelevant to the situation. But the manager started talking more openly that I'd ever heard him talk before. The conflict was resolved, and harmony was quickly established.
Identifying ourselves with God's creation lifts us into a higher perception of the peace and order that are ours by divince right. It lifts us out of reach of human emotions and leaves us more stable because more aware of Spirit's control.
Mary Baker Eddy n3 shows the value of turning away from material beliefs, what-ever form they take, and focusing on God. She promises, "Fixing your gaze on the realities supernal, you will rise to the spiritual consciousness of being , even as the bird which has burst from the egg and preens its wings for a skyward flight." n4
n3 Mrs. Eddy is the Disvoverer and Founder of Christian Science;
n4 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m p. 261.