Change Within

A change in our lives can be a good thing if it reflects the need for progress or is demanded by progress. But at times the desire for a shift is deceptive. It misses the real need. Yes, it often seems as though the cause of our discontent were the particular job or location or relationship we find ourselves in at the moment. And there's no question that in some situations an adjustment is required, to say the least. But frequently our deeper need is for a change within. This may seem a typically ``religious'' point to make, one that's not particularly realistic in view of life's complexities, one that can't provide any immediate or concrete help. And yet nothing could be more practical than looking within our own thought in order to rectify what appears to be an external trouble.

This doesn't mean that we should probe for some secret fault that may need correcting. Rather it suggests the need to yield more fully to the government of divine wisdom, to be willing to allow the one infinite Mind, God, to direct our way, to give us the specific intuitions we may need in order to feel at peace or to take the appropriate action or to see what shortcoming may need healing.

Maybe we've been mentally pushing for things to work out in a particular way, thinking that nothing else could bring us happiness. Yet in the deepest sense, God alone is the source of our happiness. It could be that instead of another change what we really need is to feel God's love more deeply and to glimpse something of our actual, spiritual selfhood, which is always satisfied, never separated from His loving provision.

A frantic, worldly sense of life is always looking for a change, looking for satisfaction in constantly shifting human events or sensual pursuits. Yet Christ Jesus said clearly, ``The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.''1

The kingdom of God is within our grasp because it's within the one infinite Mind, which is our true Mind. This kingdom can be discerned, and its blessings experienced, as we commune with our creator in prayer, as we humbly give up personal will and let our lives be governed by His love -- as we let the divine Mind be our Mind. As Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, puts it, ``Having no other gods, turning to no other but the one perfect Mind to guide him, man is the likeness of God, pure and eternal, having that Mind which was also in Christ.''2 And she says reassuringly in one of her poems, ``Who doth His will -- His likeness still -- /Is satisfied.''3

To do God's will is increasingly to conform our thoughts and lives to the purity inherent in the divine nature. It's to grow in our love for God and for the man of His creating, which is the real, Godlike selfhood of each of us. This increasing spirituality within is the only thing that can ultimately satisfy us, because God alone -- Spirit alone -- confers satisfaction.

This is not, however, a form of deprivation. Far from it. Spirituality enriches our lives now with what we need, because it brings us into harmony with the source of all good. And a spiritual tone of thought impels the right changes, changes that will bless us and others, changes that are the outgrowth of progress and not merely the product of restless materialism.

So if we feel the need for change, maybe the first course of action should be the prayer of humble desire to do God's will and to feel something of that kingdom within. God does love us, and His will for us is totally good. With that understanding, we can listen for His direction and follow it confidently.

1Luke 17:20, 21. 2Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 467. 3Poems, p. 79.

The Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine, contains more articles about God's power to heal.

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