Working for the best

IN a recent television interview, an award-winning actress said with characteristic spunk, ``You don't hope for the best, you work for the best.'' This utterance holds true from the baking of a pie to the attainment of peace in the world. All too often one is tempted to believe that when a task seems beyond one's personal ability, the most that can be done is to hope for the best. This line of thinking can lead to ``Why should I even try?'' Christian Science presents a different view. In accord with the Bible, it maintains that God is ever-present, all-inclusive good, that God is the source of unlimited ability, understanding, and fresh ideas. So we are never really out on a limb to do a job all on our own. To believe that there is such a situation is to believe that there is a place or moment where infinite Mind, God, is not All. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, ``Since God is All, there is no room for His unlikeness.'' 1 There is no room for fear, inability, lack, or imperfection. As we look to God as our source, we are working, and not just hoping, for the best. Striving daily to express qualities that are derived from God, such as purity, love, strength, wisdom, and so forth, is prayer in action. Reflecting the divine nature is vital to genuine success in any area of life. For example, there is a lot more to making a scrumptious meal than just following a recipe. One time a particularly fine cook gave me a recipe card that contained her secret. It read, ``Ingredient for all r ecipes--LOVE.'' This woman not only loved to cook; she loved to serve up the very best. She never tried out a recipe on guests, only hoping for the best. She always practiced and corrected the preparation of any dish before making it for company. You could virtually taste the love that was being expressed through her work. She never hoped for the best; she worked for it! On the other hand, working for the best, in the highest sense, is not a mere exertion of human will and determination. Rather, it includes a gentle yielding of thought to the allness of infinite Mind, God. This involves a willingness to patiently, consciously follow the leadings of Christ, the divine influence always present to bless mankind. Christ Jesus humbly said, ``My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.'' 2 We work because God is always at work maintaining His perfect creation. We are not actually working to create something. When you clean a house, you do not create a clean house. You help to reveal what was hidden by the dirt. All too often we allow our thought to be ``fogged in,'' and we are not alert to the wonderfully complete possibilities that are right at hand. The Christ can bring healing to every phase of our lives if we let it, if we humbly follow Jesus' example in thought and daily practice. The Christ is always speaking to our consciousness--revealing the necessary Godlike qualities. Are we listening? If we are, we are working for the best. A carpenter is a good carpenter when he expresses accuracy and completeness. These are qualities that come solely from God and are continuously available to each of us. No one has a corner on the market. Our world needs our work. It is in great need of thought turned Godward for healing direction and fresh ideas. To simply hope for peace in a Pollyanna fashion is doing very little to help promote peace. Mrs. Eddy states, ``The song of Christian Science is, `Work--work-- work--watch and pray.' '' 3 We are working when we acknowledge, deep down, that peace is achievable, that in fact peace is a spiritual reality now. We are working when we watch and pray for evidence of harmony in our lives and in world affairs. We are working when we turn to God as not only our own but as the whole world's source of intelligence, patience, creativity, compassion, honesty, joy, and selflessness. We are working when we see that no one person or nation has a monopoly on the healing direct ion of the Christ. As we work for the best in our daily lives, we too will be award winners. Our award will be the deep sense of peace that always accompanies Christly healing. 1 Science and Health, p. 339. 2 John 5:17. 3 Message to The Mother Church for 1900, p. 2.

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