We met unexpectedly in the airport. Our acquaintance over the years had only been by correspondence or an occasional phone call; that brief flight was our first actual visit together. But she shared with me something I will cherish always.
She confided, "O often pray: Thank you, Father, for all the good You are giving me today. Thank you for the strength You will give me to overcome those things that may not seem so good. And thank you for that special gift You have planned for me today."
When I asked, "What gift?" she answered, "Don't fathers often bring home to their children a special gift?" I agreed they did. "Well," she continued, "don't you think our heavenly Father, who loves us so much more, has such a gift for us each day?" I had never thought of it that way, but I knew she must be right. Hadn't Christ Jesus said, "If ye . . . know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?" n1
n1 Matthew 7:11;
Then she added: "But you'll have to look for it, you know. It takes practice -- finding that special gift each day." I realized this was no game with her. It was the result of her deep spirituality, of recognizing over many years the omnipresence of divine Love, and of a beautiful expectancy of good.
I thought of Mary Baker Eddy's n2 reply when she was asked if she believed in a personal God. She said, "I know not what the person of omnipotence and omnipresence is, or what the infinite includes; therefore, I worship that of which I can conceive, first, as a loving Father and Mother; then, as thought ascends the scale of being to diviner consciousness, God becomes to me, as to the apostle who declared it, 'God is Love,' -- divine Principle, -- which I worship . . . ." n3
n2 Mrs. Eddy is the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science;
n3 Miscellaneous Writings,m p. 96.
Those of us who have been blessed by having human fathers who were generous, thoughtful, and kind may find it easy to turn with childlike trust to the concept of God as a loving Father. Those who did not have such an experience may feel deprived. They needn't. They can find their loving Father right now. But first there needs to be a willingness to be childlike. That's the key.
Innocence. Hope. Trust. Purity. Childlikeness. These qualities are available to everyone. The natural status of the real man, the true identity of each of us, is spiritual and includes purity and innocence. Whatever challenges or denies this statement is a misconception of man and of the one all-good, loving, Father- Mother God, the only creator.
As we forsake this misconception of the source and nature of real identity and begin to adopt our true, perfect nature as God's offspring, we will find in ourselves more and more the childlikeness and expectancy of good that so characterized my friend.
How humble I felt when she told me that our short flight together had been her special gift for the day. Little did she realize what a gift I had received!
She had shown me the way to gain a deeper insight into the good God has available to all who seek it. All of us have the same opportunity. As we increasingly accept the concept of God as our loving Father, we will discover facets of His love we may not have seen before. How loved we can begin to feel as each day we discover more of what He has given us.
I can't tell you what you'll find God giving. Christ Jesus said good gifts would come from the Father "to them that ask him." I can only say: It's true. I'm finding a gift -- and more -- every day! DAILY BIBLE VERSE God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine. Genesis 27:28