Lift Up Your View

Bringing a spiritual perspective to world events and daily life.

Can every person experience renewal and salvation now? Or must we wait for "the end of the world"? The change in one's outlook on life, from a merely material basis to a more spiritual perspective, is a type of resurrection; and each one of us can accomplish it at present. One definition of to resurrect is "to bring to view, attention or use again; to raise up."

Where to begin? In thought, actually. What's your view of that neighbor next door-not the most considerate? Of that son or daughter-unappreciative? What about that employer or employee, co-worker, in-law, spouse-difficult to be around? Well, it's amazing what a little raising up of thought can do to change those kinds of viewpoints. And with these changes, there's also a healing effect to be observed in everyday situations.

It's important to know that God is the Father and Mother of us all. The first chapter of Genesis in the Bible says, "God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. . . . And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good" (verses 27, 31). If we accept this as true, then we have to accept the fact that all of us are spiritual and perfect, because God is Spirit, is perfect, and made His creation like Himself. It's not always easy to see sometimes, but our true nature is spiritual, upright, and totally without fault. And you can bring this spiritual, correct account of yourself and others into view by acknowledging that it is true. You really can begin to identify people as expressive of good qualities like consideration, intelligence, integrity, and compassion-even before these qualities appear before your eyes.

I once worked at a grocery store, with an employee who was unpleasant. He did not make many friends because of his obnoxious behavior toward the female employees. I felt that I could lift up my own concept of this person because I'd been learning how to do this from studying Christian Science. So I refused to believe that what I saw and heard was all there was to this man. I carried it further by refusing to be offended by his remarks; instead I made it a point to talk to him first, saying things like "Good morning," and asking "How are you doing today?" I found I could in this way offer a kind comment and make him feel better. I treated him with respect and dignity-the way I wanted to be treated. Some time later I realized that his snide and inappropriate quips toward everyone were gone, and that he was a much more pleasant person to be around. Here was resurrection.

What are we really doing when we see someone or something as less than perfect? Nothing more than making a mistake-a mistake in understanding what God created. The second chapter of Genesis begins to paint a flawed picture of creation, with God creating men and women formed of dust, incomplete, disobedient, full of shame, and cursed. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science in 1866, said of this: "The Science of the first record proves the falsity of the second. If one is true, the other is false, for they are antagonistic." That's from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the textbook of Christian Science (p. 522). To solve problems that arise inevitably in the course of our lives, then, we must hold to that first-the true-version of creation.

We can be generous and magnanimous toward others. This was something Christ Jesus required of those whom he taught. We can be the first to offer a friendly sign; to nod, to smile, or to forgive. That will help all involved-not because of nice words, but because it is being faithful to God, like Jesus, who was always expressing the transforming power of the Christ to people who were sinning, diseased, and dying. Only what God created-what is good-can exist. There is a saying, "Speak to the king in the man, and the king comes forth."

So, what is resurrection? It's turning our perception up and away from an imperfect, uninspired view of people, places, and events to a more spiritually based viewpoint. We can be in the resurrecting business rather than in demolition; we can build each other up instead of tearing each other down. Then our words and deeds follow in appropriate ways, to help adjust and improve human circumstances.

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