WHEN I was a child, preparation for a journey always involved getting out the heavy leather suitcases with their straps and buckles and sometimes brass-covered corners. Today, people often travel anywhere on the globe with lightweight cases carrying lightweight clothing. And with the speed of air travel, the journey itself is less of a burden. Through all the advances of technology, however, human nature has remained much the same. Does this mean that the heavy loads of self-pity and depression that we often lug about with us on our daily journeys can't be lightened?
Christ Jesus said to mankind: ``Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.''1
We might ask ourselves how Jesus, who was persecuted and who suffered for the sins of this world, could say that his burden was light. Yet how else could he have accomplished his mission but by understanding that God was the source and sustainer of his being and that his burden was, therefore, light? In only three years of healing and teaching he showed us how to work out our salvation, how to progressively bring to light our genuine spiritual selfhood and to realize the kingdom of heaven within us.
At first there were comparatively few who recognized the impact that Jesus' teachings would have on the centuries ahead. But one who did was the writer of Hebrews, who urged, ``Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.''2
It is not hard for any of us to list what these heavy weights are that we tend to carry about. It is plain to see how they take away our joy and slow down our spiritual progress. Fear, anger, self-righteousness, depression, sorrow, self-pity, resentment, egotism, pride, lust, intemperance, anxiety--it's a heavy list. But the Bible tells us to lay aside ``every'' weight. If we strive to do this, realizing that our true being in God's likeness is eternally free from sin and burden, we'll begin to find the pure joy of trusting God, of placing ourselves under His spiritual laws. We'll begin to demonstrate our God-given freedom.
Through Christian Science we can come to see the power of divine Spirit, dissolving the weight of materialism in human thought. In Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, writes: ``Through divine Science, Spirit, God, unites understanding to eternal harmony. The calm and exalted thought or spiritual apprehension is at peace.''3
Spiritual-mindedness is the key to mental buoyancy. Jesus' teachings in the Sermon on the Mount point the way toward cultivating the qualities that elevate thought. Expressing greater mercy, meekness, and so forth requires self-discipline, but this does not drag us down. On the contrary, it's invigorating and confers genuine peace.
Mrs. Eddy says: ``The grand realism that man is the true image of God, not fallen or inverted, is demonstrated by Christian Science. And because Christ's dear demand, `Be ye therefore perfect,' is valid, it will be found possible to fulfil it.''4 Man, as God's beloved creation, reflects the nature of his creator continuously. Instead of being flung into a state of sinful separation from God, man exists in perfect harmony, inseparable from his creator. This is our true nature, which we'll see more and more of as we follow Jesus' teachings and drop the weight of materialistic thinking.
A fundamental part of Jesus' mission was to save mankind from the mesmerism of materialism, which would drag us down. He invited us to share his yoke. What a privilege to travel in his footsteps and so gain the buoyancy of spiritual thinking. The dropping of each earth-weight brings some degree of blessing to all, lightening the load of materialism for mankind.
1Matthew 11:28-30. 2Hebrews 12:1, 2. 3Science and Health, p. 506. 4Christian Science versus Pantheism, p. 11-12. You can find more articles like this one in the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine. DAILY BIBLE VERSE: To be spiritually minded is life and peace. Romans 8:6