Meeting challenges

Challenges -- at times our days seem filled with them. Family life, business contacts, social relationships, and financial obligations make different demands on each of us.

The ease or difficulty with which we meet challenges depends on our outlook. The belief that we are limited by time, ability, personality, or income may cause doubt. Turning to God, however, and recognizing His infinite love and our own real identity as His expression, bring confidence that we can accomplish what we need to.

The outcome of events often seems to be determined by manipulation, chance, or luck. Actually it's beliefm in these limiting factors that appears to give them power. When we commit ourselves to understand and demonstrate the omnipotence of God, unlimited good, we find that the only true power is divine Love. As we're obedient to Love's demands, we meet challenges successfully. Says the Bible, "Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass." n1

n1 Psalms 37:5.

At times it may seem that fulfilling our commitments or reaching our goals is impossible. In despair we are tempted to lower our sights to a level more readily attainable, or even to give up completely. But when we strive persistently for the understanding of God -- and find it, at least in some degree -- we can overcome dejection and go forward.

When moving into a new apartment, we were faced with a challenge that at first seemed overwhelming. Because of the design of a hallway, some of our belongings could not be brought in. Other pieces that had been very useful in the past began to haunt our home, taking up space and dictating its use in ways that did not meet our needs.

At first we felt trapped. We loved our apartment, but the thought of acquiring the furnishings to make it functional seemed next to impossible. We were tempted to give up and find another place.

However, we began to develop in thought the qualities we wanted our home to express -- order, beauty, utility, comfort. As we held to these spiritual ideals and tried to live them, thoughts on how to overcome the challenge began to pour in. We discovered new uses for furnishings we already had. We disposed of other items no longer useful to us. Maintaining the understanding that our true home is God and that every one of His children expresses completeness and satisfaction eternally, we found the confidence and inspiration necessary to furnish the apartment completely in a very short time. And this was done without sacrificing quality or financial responsibility.

Meeting challenges through spiritual understanding has nothing to do with willful manipulation of events to fulfill preconceived expectations. When the way is not clear, or the footsteps leading to a solution are labored and strained, it is wise to consider if we are receptive to the good that God has prepared, that He has alreadym established, or if we will accept only the good we have planned.

At such times peace and direction are found by deepening our desires, turning them more consistently toward God and away from the primary cherishing of material goals. Mary Baker Eddy n2 writes, "Desire is prayer; and no loss can occur from trusting God with our desires, that they may be moulded and exalted before they take form in words and in deeds." n3

n2 Mrs. Eddy is the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science.

n3 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m p. 1.

Striving to meet every challenge through trust in God demands humility and strength. At times we may need to abandon what at first seemed to be the right course of action, and wait patiently for divine guidance. Another instance may require us to take an unrelenting stand for right, cutting through commonly accepted means for achieving an end. But whether humble obedience or great moral stamina is required, one's commitment to good will bless not only him but all mankind. DAILY BIBLE VERSE O Lord, be gracious unto us; we have waited for thee: be thou their arm every morning, our salvation also in the time of trouble. Isaiah 33:2

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