Not Enough Time?
PEOPLE who design and manufacture consumer goods often work ten to eighteen months in advance of the product's appearance in stores. Delays, changes in plans, or poor execution of initial samples can leave businesses severely pressed for time to have their products ready for trade shows or their retail outlets. The challenge of getting things done on time, though, is not unique to industry. Most of us find ourselves pressed some days to overcome delays and changes in plans that make it difficult to meet important deadlines. Some people, faced with delay and tight schedules, find themselves overwhelmed by the suggestion that it's impossible to succeed. Others spend their time complaining about everyone else's faults. Blame is laid at every doorstep. In this mental environment discouragement increases, frustration and anger multiply. The result tends to be greater inefficiency, strife, and more mistakes. Since order and harmony are antidotes to delay and confusion, however, the acceptance that something is possible often galvanizes effort, increases endurance, and allows one to perform more effectively. But we can be certain of this result only when we recognize that such assurance has a spiritual foundation. In his letter to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul could say, regardless of his circumstances, ''I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me'' (4:13). Earlier in the same letter he wrote that the Philippian Christians could accomplish their spiritual work because ''it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure'' (2:13). Both these statements provide a dependable basis for doing whatever is required of us-from working out our salvation to fulfilling a contract. God's grace is no less available for accomplishing the mundane than it is for fulfilling the very purpose of life. When we recognize that we have the spiritual capacity to do what is required, we don't waste time or energy believing that something cannot be done. And when we acknowledge that it is God, the spirit of Life, who is at work within us, we find it natural to perceive that this power of good works in all of God's children. If we hold faithfully to these two ideas as we go through our day, we will reach new levels of productivity and accomplishment. Sometimes just the idea of limited time is paralyzing. While a tedious meeting seems to make the second hand creep around the dial, when we are pressed for time, it dashes. In a way, this hints at the mental nature of time and the possibility of our dominion over it. In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy provides the spiritual significance of a number of Biblical names and words. In Genesis in the Bible, creation is described as taking place during seven days. The Discoverer of Christian Science, Mrs. Eddy, provides spiritual insight into the meaning of the word day. Speaking of God as Mind, she writes: ''The objects of time and sense disappear in the illumination of spiritual understanding, and Mind measures time according to the good that is unfolded. This unfolding is God's day, and 'there shall be no night there' '' (p. 584). The temptation is to measure time by what hasn't been done yet. This is enervating. An acknowledgment of the appearing of good animates us. If we forget that God's aid is ever present and that we can do all through Christ, we often begin mourning our failure even before we've failed. In her book entitled Poems, Mrs. Eddy includes a poem, ''Communion Hymn'' (p. 75), that rouses us to see that Christ, God's divine message, continues to knock on our mental doors in order to deliver us from this mistake. She writes, Mourner, it calls you,-''Come to my bosom, Love wipes your tears all away, And will lift the shade of gloom, And for you make radiant room Midst the glories of one endless day.'' ''Radiant room.'' Just what we need! With this we can follow Jesus' teaching to do God's will: to do what is right for us to do with grace, and to rejoice in the evidence of God's constant care.