Safely, securely, serenely

That's the way we are held - safely, securely, serenely - in the Father's loving embrace. We can never, in truth, be separated from Him, never be apart from Him. God loves us with a tender love, and His plan for all His children is good.

Forget it, you say. I see only toil and trouble around me. I know the score, and things are not all that great.

Life may not always appear very encouraging. But reality, in its truest sense , goes beyond appearances to the truth of what God has actually created. According to the Bible, God made man in His image, and in absolute reality this is the only man there is, forever free. Free of all human encumbrances. Free of all human laws that would shackle and bind. Free to be safe, secure, and serene.

Safe? Yes, quite safe. For example, a woman I know who lived in one of our largest cities had been shopping in a neighborhood that, even in broad daylight, had become unsafe. Mugging and purse snatching had become a part of the scene. Wending her way along the busy sidewalk, carrying her bag of groceries, she suddenly felt a tugging at her purse. She turned around and faced the young man who was trying to take it from her. She looked at him and said with assurance, ''God loves you.'' He looked surprised but tugged again. She repeated, ''God loves you.'' Then from across the street she heard a vibrant voice call out, ''Leave that lady alone!'' The young man turned and fled, and my friend called after him, ''God loves you.'' Not only was my friend safe, but the muggings and purse snatchings ceased in that neighborhood.

Why did my friend say, ''God loves you'' to this man? She was claiming for him, and in a sense for everyone, what she always knew in relation to herself: that God's love is embracing each individual.

From the moment she wakes up in the morning, my friend claims her alliance with God. She is constantly aware of His allness, His presence, His power, and of herself held safely, securely, and serenely in His care.

Secure? Yes, secure. When we realize God's supremacy, and conform our thoughts and lives to His law, the threats of a materially oriented society cannot hold us in a vise of insecurity. ''What is it that harms you?'' asks Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. ''Can height, or depth, or any other creature separate you from the Love that is omnipresent good , - that blesses infinitely one and all?'' n1 And the Psalmist sang, ''Thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.'' n2

n1 Miscellaneous Writings, p. 8.

n2 Psalms 4:8.

Serene? In this day and age? It sounds like a dream world or an outer space fantasy. But we can find serenity through prayer, through quiet, confident knowing that God is in charge of every event and every moment of our lives. This isn't escapism. Rather, such prayer enables us to discern reality - to discern God's presence, the authority of His goodness, and the temporal, insubstantial, unintelligent nature of whatever would oppose that goodness.

Christ Jefus must have been sure he was safe in God's care. He passed unnoticed and unharmed through a crowd that would have stoned him. He stilled a storm at sea and quieted the fears of his disciples. He was serene when faced by discord, because he understood the absolute supremacy of God, of good. It was natural for him to feel safe, secure, and serene in his Father's love.

It's natural for each one of us to feel God's presence as well. But prayer and Christly living are essential if we're to gain and maintain this state of consciousness. It is important each day to know in prayer that we are held safely in His love, secure in His embrace. As we're faithful in this work, we'll prove that harmony is indeed the fact of our being.

Safe, secure, serene? Yes, we are - every moment, forever. DAILY BIBLE VERSE I delight to do thy will O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart. . . . Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O Lord: let thy loving- kindness and thy truth continually preserve me. Psalms 40:8,11

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