New light and joy

A Christian Science perspective.

The air is filling with the scent of blossoms in our garden. The warm south breeze is a sheer delight after the hard and unusually cold winter we've had in Europe. The new growth and the young shoots are all promises of exciting new stirring taking place in nature, in contrast to the continuing challenges posed by the economy and its effects on people's budgets, work, education, and future plans.

Even when things look down, I find it helpful to cling to the idea of newness because it includes hope, joy, and anticipation. It opens my eyes to new opportunities, new beginnings. New ways of being creative.

The Bible promises that the Lord's mercies are "new every morning" (see Lam. 3:22, 23). That newness is a sign of God's ever-present grace. It often shows up when we're feeling that God has forgotten us – as a reminder that His love is always with us and always unfolding bigger and wider expressions of His goodness. It is always available, always there. Our role is to let its light show us God's goodness through a resurrected or renewed view of reality.

Mary Baker Eddy described the biblical significance of "resurrection" this way: "Spiritualization of thought; a new and higher idea of immortality, or spiritual existence; material belief yielding to spiritual understanding" ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," p. 593). To me, this explains how Jesus was able to heal. His healing works were the result of spiritualized thought that transforms and regenerates.

When Jesus healed a man who was born blind, the man saw things around him for the first time as a whole new world. But actually those things had always been there; it was the blindness or mental darkness that had prevented him from seeing them. Spiritual healing removes this darkness and brings to light that which has always been there.

When our thoughts rise even slightly to the awareness of the divine Mind's presence in our lives, opportunities that were already there come to light.

Here's an example: There was a time when it was important for me to think in new, innovative ways. I was working with a group of volunteers for a charity organization that needed to raise substantial funds. I found, however, that I was so accustomed to thinking about this activity in a certain way that it was difficult to take a fresh approach.

As I prayed for a more inspired view, I decided to study the Gospels in order to better understand Jesus' teachings. What particularly touched me was how everything he did was for the glory of God. After he healed someone, according to the Bible's accounts, witnesses to the healing as well as those who were healed often gave glory to God. Once Jesus healed a man who had been paralyzed. The Gospel of Matthew says, "When the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men" (9:8). Other examples include a time when Jesus raised a widow's son from death (see Luke 7:16) and when people witnessed him perform many different healings (see Matt. 15:31).

Taking Jesus' example to heart, I decided to do one new thing every day that would give glory to God. My thoughts became more focused on God, on trying to perceive God's will for our project and for my days, and on giving Him glory. This change helped me break through the routine that had been burdening me, and I began to see many new and creative ways to do the charity work. That year, we were able to raise substantial funds to help the organization do many new projects.

If you feel you're in a rut of some kind or are facing a project that demands new thinking, you might try praying along these lines. You'll find that it keeps you always looking for the good in your day because this is the evidence of God's presence and a way for you to glorify God with gratitude. Also, you may find new opportunities to help someone else – and then both you and the one you're helping will have reason to glorify God.

Becoming conscious of the presence and power of divine Mind in our lives transforms the way we think about ourselves and others, and it brings new light and joy to our days.

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