The Correcting Christ
MOST of us can use a little correcting now and then. Sometimes in big things. Sometimes in little things. But whatever the needed improvement, we can be grateful to be corrected because it brings us back into line with what is good and right. Correction comes in many forms, but there is one ``corrector'' who not only can get us to listen but who can make us willing to mend our ways. This corrector is Christ.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, tells us in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, ``Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness.'' Christ makes us aware of our spiritual nature as the child of God. By voicing this truth about man, Christ corrects our mistaken beliefs and brings healing and redemption to our lives.
In the Bible, John's Gospel tells us that when Christ Jesus spoke to the woman accused of adultery, he did not scorn her or condemn her. But he did say to her, ``Go, and sin no more.'' This loving rebuke had the power to change the woman--to create in her a desire for righteous living. This is what Christ does. Christ knocks at the door of thought. We can listen and respond to Christ, Truth, and be willing to let it reach deep into our consciousness to govern our actions.
There was a time when I badly needed correction. But I was pretty sure of myself, and if anyone had tried to offer me advice, I would have rejected it. But God's gentle Christ can get through even the hardest shell of self-righteousness, turning us to God, omnipotent Love, as naturally as a flower turns toward light.
At the time, life seemed overwhelming and out of control. We had two young children and were living in a new community. I felt I simply was not keeping up with the demands on me as wife and mother. Though I prayed diligently, I felt far from God. Then one day the inaudible words ``let God'' came to my thought. It seemed as though everything around me stopped. Let God? Let God . . . what? ``Let God govern them'' was the answer.
I felt as though a kind, fatherly arm had been put around my shoulders and was urging me to be willing to listen. I was being corrected, and I knew it. But at last I was humble enough to want more from this tender wisdom that seemed to know just what the answer was. I went to a dictionary and looked up the word let and found the words: allow, permit.
When healing occurs, there is a moment when our recognition of what is good and true washes away that which is not good and not true, and this was that moment for me. I saw that I had become a very bossy person in our house! I had been trying (like many well-intentioned parents) to govern my family by telling them just what to do and how to do it! I felt inordinately responsible for everything everyone did. And without my knowing it, this approach was causing underlying currents of tension and anxiety.
Suddenly the meaning of the words ``let God govern them'' became clear. I saw that I must allow and permit God to govern His own creation. I realized that I could trust the power of God's government and step aside from the false assumption that I personally needed to control family members. I still needed to fulfill my responsibility as a wife and mother, but also I needed to accept the fact that the motherhood of God was guiding each of us rightly.
Over the next several days there were quite a few instances where I consciously had to hold myself back from telling the children or my husband just what I thought they should do. It took much effort, but each time I was tempted to be bossy, I reminded myself, ``Let God govern them.'' And He did! The anxiousness and tension in the family relaxed and greater peace permeated our lives. This took place several years ago, but I still endeavor to let God govern me and my family as we fulfill our individual an d collective responsibilities.
God is always with us, always ready to help us to take a step higher in our understanding of man's spiritual nature. And His correcting Christ has marvelous things in store for us when we are willing to listen and be corrected!
My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: for whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? . . . We have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us after their
own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. Hebrews 12:5-7, 9-11