Category Archives: Bible

Fixing past mistakes

I make mistakes. Sometimes, I don’t know I make mistakes until much later in life.

Mistakes are blunders, gaffes, misprints, or errors. They can also be misunderstandings, over-estimations or underestimations. I’ve made the mistake of simply failing to appreciate true values as expressed by people around me.

From 21st Century Science and Health: If mortals are not progressive, past failures will be repeated until all wrong work is erased or corrected.

Some mistakes can be fixed. I can fix a misprint on a webpage.

But some mistakes can’t be tangibly fixed. I can’t return to the past and appreciate the true values as expressed by people around me. To doggedly try to fix that past behavior is vain. It leads to guilt and shame. But, to pretend my mistake didn’t happen also leads to guilt and shame. And guilt and shame clog our thinking. This is when it’s time to live in the now.

From 21st Century Science and Health: Take the time to look past the fading, sensational pictures. Gain the true sense of life. Rest your gaze on the unsearchable realm of Mind. Look ahead and act as possessing all power from Truth and Love in whom you have your being.

Thankfully, we are driven to seek something greater.

I want to yield to something greater than a humanlike power. And this requires unclogged thinking.

The humanlike God is presented oftentimes in the Bible. Paul recorded in the book of Acts:  “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill.  In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.  For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.” (Acts 17: 29-31, NIV)

But this wording doesn’t make God humanlike. Just like my past failures to appreciate truth don’t reduce God to being unable to lift me up out of a past mistake.

God is Godlike, Spirit, Love, Truth and powerful to lift up. And Paul, along with millions of other spiritually minded, stretched their minds to be Godlike.

Paul distinguished between humanlike gods and Godlike God, between mistakable humans and us as understanding individuals. We read in Acts: When the crowd saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!”  Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul they called Hermes because he was the chief speaker.  The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought bulls and wreaths to the city gates because he and the crowd wanted to offer sacrifices to them.  But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of this, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting:  “Friends, why are you doing this? We too are only human, like you. We are bringing you good news, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heavens and the earth and the sea and everything in them.  In the past, he let all nations go their own way.  Yet he has not left himself without testimony: He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; he provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.”  Even with these words, they had difficulty keeping the crowd from sacrificing to them. (Acts 14: 11-18, NIV)

It’s a struggle between the human ego and the desire to stand with the divine Ego, or God. But I can live in the now and appreciate the good around me, carry that appreciation to the past and the future. I can because God is divine Mind, all-knowing Mind.

From 21st Century Science and Health: It is the prerogative of the ever-present divine Mind, and of thought which is in alignment with this Mind, to know the past, the present, and the future.

 

What do you want?

The stronger want will rule over the weaker want.

But it’s hard to know what we really want because we generally have so many wants.

We want mindfulness. We want happiness. We want health.

In all honesty, we also want status, ritual and money.

Due to the unsure human nature, those wants get twisted. We all know someone who compromised their integrity with the wants of self-interest and status. We all know someone who was intimidated by leaders for the want of money. Thereby, true wants don’t manifest and people have status and money, but live and move in a small cliques with even smaller effectiveness in the world.

From Ezekiel, “‘You say, “We want to be like the nations, like the peoples of the world, who serve wood and stone.” But what you have in mind will never happen.”

Our wants also get twisted after bad experiences and we then, don’t want. We don’t want to lack mindfulness, we don’t want to be unhappy, and we don’t want to be sick.

Starting from the “don’t want” scenario, our actions tighten into a vicious struggle against the enemies we have created; the self-created enemies of mindlessness, unhappiness, and sickness. We become defensive and isolated.

No doubt, human wants vary and vacillate, sporadically and according to circumstances. Their end results are death and the expectation of death. Therefore, we want to turn away from human wants and put our hope and faith in the want of Life, Truth, and Love, God.

“We want to keep our immortal consciousness open to spiritual existence and to our God-given powers.”—from science & religion to God

In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus counsels on wanting life and love.

Want to feed. Matt. 15:32 Give people the help they need, not the help you think they are supposed to accept and give back.

Want to settle accounts. Matt. 18:23 Don’t expect others to meet your terms, listen to others with a mind that gives forth truth and life.

Want to serve. Matt. 20:27 Don’t want to be great, famous and popular.

“Our limited knowledge of matter and its energy is not mind or intelligence, it doesn’t coexist with Mind. Spiritual knowledge is what we want and it is gained through spiritual sense. There will be turbulences as the evidence of spiritual sense conflicts with the testimony of physical sense, but the storms will roll away and reveal peace. The supremacy of Spirit entitles us to antidote the chaotic existence of relativity with Truth and Love.”—from science & religion to God

closeup fall leaves elm street

 

 

Recommended book on Angels

“Angles take different forms when they appear. Some say they seem like ordinary people. Others say they could be mistaken for mighty warriors. But a man named Isaiah described the angels he saw as, well, very strange looking indeed.” Angels in the Bible Storybook, by Allia Zobel Nolan

I got this book for myself in the audio version. I listened to it before falling asleep, and enjoyed its simplicity and honesty. It’s written for adults and children.

I ordered a hardback edition to have at our home. We can read it to our granddaughter when she comes to visit. The Storybook is illustrated nicely by Alida Massari.

My book, from science & religion to God, defines angels as God’s messages to us. They are messages of love, forgiveness, strength, purity and progress. We can feel surrounded by angels.

angel book

 

Lion or lying?

We read in I Peter 5:8, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” This knowledge oftentimes leads me to pray for more courage to stand up against the world, as if the world causes my problems. However, when no healing results, I switch out my prayer and stop lying to myself.

I very well could be dealing with my own apathy, not a lion.

I pray for courage to become less apathetic.

It’s the story of Joseph that taught me this lesson. It’s not the story of the personal Joseph, but the story of how he was connected, more specifically to Moses and the Exodus of the children of Israel.

The personal Joseph has been put down as a hero who saved the people of Egypt and Israel. Joseph has also been put down as a villain who enabled a population to be dependent and enslaved.

As far as the Exodus, there is no conclusive historical evidence that it’s massive movement even occurred, but again, I learn my lessons from the bigger picture, the myth of it all, if you will.

Joseph, an Israelite, was sold into slavery as a teenager. In a zig-zag almost unbelievable way, he ended up ruling the land of Egypt for Pharaoh, because he had a dream that there would be seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine.

During this famine time, Joseph’s family was moved to Egypt so they too wouldn’t starve to death. After the famine, Israelites lived with Egyptians. I can only guess that the Egyptians felt relieved the famine was over and the Israelites felt appreciative for being saved. Years passed. Centuries passed.

Maybe resentment crept in, but the Egyptians started feeling impinged upon and began asking the children of Israel to do jobs around the place. I suppose the Israelites could have done the jobs out of appreciation, but it dawned on me that at some point a few of the Israelites probably felt like the Egyptians could do their own work. Bucking the majority of Israelites who wanted to keep the peace, the few went along with working for Egypt.

The asking quickly became demanding and the Israelites became slaves. Resentment or not, apathy to keep the peace played a role in this high action saga. I tell myself, this wasn’t a case of the Egyptians kidnapping the Israelites and enslaving them, it was a case of the Israelites becoming so lethargic, even though their physical bodies were actively at work in the fields, they were so spiritually lazy that they were basically self-enslaved.

By time Moses came on the scene, the Israelites were fully isolated in Egypt. They had no energy or ambition to seek and stand with their God. They were visionless, except one woman who birthed Moses and took extraordinary measures to save him.

It was a lot of rig-a-ma-roll, but Moses grew up and eventually led the people of Israel out of Egypt and the saga continues.

Anyway, if I catch myself following a peaceful routine and even planning my day so that routine remains, I try to snap myself out of the pending apathy. I do not want to use spirituality to make a comfortable mortal life. I do not want to try to use spirituality to preserve a past. There is no such thing as a peaceful mortal life.

Spirituality is powerfully useful to reveal mental and interconnected peace. Our physical situation is peaceful only when those around us are peaceful to an increasing degree also. I can’t isolate myself from others and I don’t want to isolate others from me. With this in mind, I pray and find there is no famine of spiritual ideas to move forward and respond to this human life with courage and confidence in God, Truth, Love.

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Truth never absent

An excerpt from my new book, from science & religion to God: a briefer narrative of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health:

Overcome beliefs instead of restrict yourself to them. We can uproot disease and throw it out of the mind. We can comprehend that disease is not a fixed fact. We can feel the influence of divine Love casting out fear. Spiritual consciousness masters fear instead of avoids or cultivates it. The more that is said about moral and spiritual law, the better will be the quality of life and the further mortals will be removed from mental illness or disease.

Spiritual consciousness guides us to locate and employ physicians who see us as more than just a physical body. Honest conversations with practitioners are appropriate.

We don’t need to be negatively affected by advertisements paid for by pharmaceutical companies. It’s beneficial not to give time and attention to selfishness, coddling, or fear-based guessing about our minds and bodies. It’s beneficial not to discuss our maladies with others as if it’s a competition to see who is worse off…

Every human being must learn that evil has neither power nor reality in Spirit. Evil is a denial of truth, as if Truth could be absent, but it can’t. There is no absence of God, omnipotent and omnipresent good.

Evil is self-assertive, but its only power is to destroy itself. Evil is not immortal; if it was, goodness would be a myth. Every attempt of evil to destroy good is a failure and only aids in punishing the evildoer. Do not concede reality to disorder while dealing with it realistically…

Incomplete human beings get flustered when following Truth, but don’t give up. Be practical when abandoning the material for the spiritual. Eat healthy food, exercise wisely, work with integrity, use common sense, and be law abiding while you discover your spirituality.

The human footsteps are indispensable. Truth seekers are consistent who, watching and praying, can “Run and not be weary…walk and not be faint.”[1] We can gain spirituality rapidly and hold our position, or we can attain slowly and yield not to discouragement. God requires our due diligence. The battle between Spirit and flesh is fought and the spiritual facts of existence are reached step by step before the victory is won.

[1] Isaiah 40:31

final front cover image

What are you watching?

Human beings become so determined to make THEIR reality, THE reality. We get indignant when someone tells us our reality is all in our head.

Most of us have had our realities change, so we come around to the idea that maybe our reality isn’t THE reality of the universe.

I read a lot of history. Our concept of reality does keep changing. I also watch movies. I can’t help but ask…

Think of all the people in the world, somewhere around 7 billion. Well, there was only 2 billion people 100 years ago.

But 100 years ago, there was no television to speak of. Today, there are billions of people watching what?

Unreality.

Paid actors. Written scripts. Rehearsed scenes.

Some of the movies depict true stories, but all the other stuff, unreal. Fake.

Are we watching more unreality, than reality?

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;

1 Corinthians 13:4-5 ESV

Value of compromise

Sometimes we get good ideas and later find out they weren’t so good.

Sometimes we follow through on ideas and find out they were better than we ever could have imagined.

Sometimes an idea comes about purely by accident or twist of fate.

Here’s a few examples:

  1. A Post-it note is a small piece of paper with a strip of low-tack adhesive on the back that allows it to be temporarily attached to documents, walls, computer monitors, and just about anything else. The idea for the Post-it note was conceived in 1974 by Arthur Fry as a way of holding bookmarks in his hymnal while singing in the church choir. He was aware of an adhesive accidentally developed in 1968 by fellow 3M employee Spencer Silver. No application for the lightly sticky stuff was apparent until Fry’s idea. The 3M company was initially skeptical about the product’s profitability, but in 1980, the product was introduced around the world. Today, Post-it notes are sold in more than 100 countries.
  2. If you can’t eat just one potato chip, blame it on chef George Crum. He reportedly created the salty snack in 1853 at Moon’s Lake House near Saratoga Springs, New York. Fed up with a customer who continuously sent his fried potatoes back, complaining that they were soggy and not crunchy enough, Crum sliced the potatoes as thin as possible, fried them in hot grease, then doused them with salt. The customer loved them and “Saratoga Chips” quickly became a popular item at the lodge and throughout New England. Eventually, the chips were mass-produced for home consumption, but since they were stored in barrels or tins, they quickly went stale. Then, in the 1920s, Laura Scudder invented the airtight bag by ironing together two pieces of waxed paper, thus keeping the chips fresh longer. Today, chips are packaged in plastic or foil bags or cardboard containers and come in a variety of flavors, including sour cream and onion, barbecue, and salt and vinegar.

I have found the idea of compromising to be beneficial. Of late, we had to deal with the Constitution Pipeline, a large natural gas company that offered unfair prices to landowners for an easement. It took patience and perseverance, however the “higher ups” at the profit making Constitution Pipeline Company finally came to the table and a dialogue with landowners began. A better easement agreement was established. It could be better, but compromise was an excellent start.

While the exercise of compromise could be taken too far, it definitely should not be disregarded. It can expand our minds to new ideas that bless humanity.

But more important, I’ve realized that we compromise whether we know it or not. The stance of not budging or not compromising, can actually cause us to compromise our integrity or open-mindedness.

I remember thinking the Bible carried the most authority when it came to understanding eternal life. I didn’t bend (compromise) when it came to thinking the Bible must be read. Then I read in Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health, where she described the Bible as “a sufficient guide.” Only sufficient, not absolute. This idea relaxed and opened my mind to new thoughts, new books, new ways of expressing the infinite goodness we have available to us.

 

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