Improving our prospects

WHEN days and weeks and years go by with little evidence of progress or of its possibility, life can seem terribly cruel. Those without jobs or with unprogressive ones, those who see no hope of fulfilling companionship or of breaking away from a stagnant environment, those struggling with disease, naturally long for solid evidence that there is a God and that they are loved.

In the Bible the Psalmist says of God, ''Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.'' n1 Maybe we feel this is a nice sentiment but of little relevance to our current situation; that even if there is a loving creator to turn to, He's of little practical help.

n1 Psalms 16:11

But is evil really so powerful, and are we truly without the aid of our omnipotent creator?

Admittedly, there may be times when it doesn't look as though there's a glimmer of hope. Yet believing we're trapped by circumstances, we tend to deprive ourselves of divine help. Whatever we're up against, our deepest need is to feel His presence, in which is ''fulness of joy.'' And it's important to know our true selves better as His offspring, worthy of His love.

Stagnation and frustration are contrary to the divine will, and we can triumph over them, even if by degrees, through God's help. We may need first to admit that He can help us, to acknowledge that there's a power infinitely greater than circumstances. Then we open the way to feeling His saving presence.

God is unvarying Love. And He is boundless Spirit, as the Bible teaches. That means He's everywhere, that He's with us now. And because God is an intelligent, loving creator, He cares for His creation; He ensures its well-being.

It may seem naive to make such an assertion when so many appear trapped. But appearances aren't reality in its truest and ultimate sense. And appearances can change when we anchor our faith in God, as Christ Jesus so persuasively illustrated through his healing works.

God is not baffled by the complexities of misfortune, because His infinite goodness excludes it. He sees and maintains man as He made him, as the blessed manifestation of His nature, active and fulfilled. There are no dead ends in divine reality.

To feel that we're little more than unfortunate victims of the ''human condition,'' destined to struggle hopelessly against impossible odds, is to deny God and perpetuate suffering. But to acknowledge God's supreme goodness, and to admit that we deserve something better because our actual selfhood is God's very likeness, is to take an important step forward. It's to pray effectively by opening our thought to spiritual truth, which harmonizes circumstances and brings new possibilities into view. In line with this thought, Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes encouragingly, ''As mortals gain more correct views of God and man, multitudinous objects of creation, which before were invisible, will become visible.''n2

n2 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, pg. 264

Of course, to realize we deserve better carries with it the demand to be who we really are - to express with more and more consistency the purity, love, integrity, joy, and so forth, that characterize man in God's likeness. This is essential to progress.

Despite, then, what our eyes and ears tell us, or what others may insist, there is an answer to our predicament, and an answer for suffering nations longing for progress. The answer is found in God, whose love and understanding are infinite. Daily Bible Verse If we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it . . . And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose . . . If God be for us, who can be against us? . . . I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us for the love of God, which is Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:25, 28, 31, 38, 39

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