Archive for the ‘spiritual identity’ Category

I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein” (Luke 18:17)   Leave a comment

One time in a high school class, my teacher handed a student a coin. He told the student to squeeze the coin in his palm very tightly. The teacher then took a five dollar bill out of his pocket and tried to push it into this student’s firmly clenched fist. The teacher tried and tried—but it couldn’t happen. For the whole class, he made a salient point—teaching us in a memorable way that we can’t grasp new concepts while we’re holding tightly onto something else.

In prayer, as in fields of learning and knowledge, an openness and willingness to exchange

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ignorance for truth always brings big benefits. Christ Jesus surely understood this and encouraged people, not just to be halfway receptive to progress, but to be as totally willing, receptive—and innocent—as little children are. “Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein” (Luke 18:17). That’s a very clear-cut way to put it!

Through communion with God we can experience the kind of transformation that is far beyond just a slight shift of direction. It can result in a radical conversion, a 180-degree change of thought, where all of existence is perceived from a different viewpoint—an entirely spiritual perspective.

With the trust and flexibility of a child, it’s rewarding to work with the quality of one’s thoughts, to be willing to release and let go of old concepts.

“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you” (Ezekiel 36:26).

 

In this article The good worth holding on to  Mark Swinney explains further how with childlike receptivity, this change of thought brings surprising changes and healing. Find it here:

https://sentinel.christianscience.com/shared/view/x9tx296nwo?s=e

 

A boulder or a boat? Projects and divine Mind’s direction   Leave a comment

By Mara Purl

When you think about a large project you need to complete, what comes to thought? Do you picture yourself pushing a boulder up a steep hill? Or can you see yourself steering a graceful boat with sails full of wind?

Extraordinary breakthroughs are possible when we get glimpses of God, divine Mind, in operation, and commit to better understanding our relation to Mind.

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I was faced with a huge writing project… So extensive would be the research, so comprehensive the interviews, ….that the whole project seemed overwhelming, and I had no idea where to start. I reached out for help from a Christian Science practitioner, who basically told me that the project was already complete. 

At first, that seemed like the most bizarre thing anyone had ever told me! Of course, the practitioner had a great deal more of substance to say about God and my relation to Him. And as I began to grasp what she was saying, I realized that her bold opening comments would later come to represent a paradigm-shifting idea she was sharing.

Click here to read the entire article from the March 13, 2017 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

“Dinner” with the enemy   Leave a comment

By Jenny Sawyer

My group of friends and I really didn’t like the way this one girl was acting. She was rude, and she put others down to make herself look good. She’d also singled me out for particularly bad treatment. …

IMG_1310Even though Christ Jesus lived two thousand years ago, I still think of him as my go-to expert on relationships. So in considering how I could think more constructively about this girl, maybe even learn to love her, I took a look at the New Testament in the Bible to see how Jesus treated people who weren’t behaving their best. What I noticed was that Jesus willingly spent time with these individuals whom the Bible calls “sinners.” He even had dinner with them!

Are we willing to sit down, really take the time, and be witnesses to the God-created, good, spiritual nature in those we feel we dislike, even despise? I’ve taken to inviting one person each day to dinner—metaphorically speaking—be it an authority figure I’m unhappy with, or someone I feel hasn’t treated me very nicely. Then, in that quiet place of prayer, I sit with my concept of them until it’s polished, transformed….

Changing course   Leave a comment

IMGP7100.JPGBy Michelle Boccanfuso Nanouche

A Christian Science perspective:  Hope to help heal the destruction and corruption of today can be gained through an inspired change of direction.

Patterns of destruction and corruption are at the heart of many problems today – from the abuse of power in politics to even the conflicts creating famine in Africa, as broadly discussed in a recent Monitor story (“UN says 1.4 million African children at risk in famine: Why there’s still hope,” Feb. 21, 2017). As we look for solutions, much of what’s needed is a change of course. But when answers require a redirection away from destructive behavior, is it reasonable to expect that we can see the change of thought needed for such a course correction?

This question is rooted in the fundamental and timeless inquiry of what we actually are.

 

In this article, “Changing Course“, Michelle explores what it takes to change major values and our perspective from a purely material view to a more spiritual one.  This article was originally published in the CS Perspective feature of the Christian Science Monitor.

Read the whole article:  Changing Course

Hate Loses Power   1 comment

shutterstock_90543814Daily Lift by Skip Phinney

Governments around the world are adopting very different strategies to deal with a growing sense of the differences between us.  Many of these strategies exaggerate the differences and diminish our similarities, and fear is often the outcome.

In this 3 minute talk Skip talks about how valuing the good in each individual and appreciating our common worth breaks down barriers and promotes the kind of peace and security we are all looking for.

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Adaptation and Bouncing Forward   Leave a comment

shutterstock_145963115News can seem to be a nonstop narrative of tragedies and victims: an unceasing flow of children, women, and men routed by war, fleeing drought, epidemics, terrorists, repression. These victims need urgent help—first aid, food, shelter, recovery assistance, developmental know-how.

But while there will always be new tragedies and new victims, most of today’s victims will recover, rebuild, and get on with life. Read more

This article, Adaptation and Bouncing Forward by John Yemma, was currently published in the November 7, 2016 edition of the Christian Science Sentinel.  It can also be accessed at JHS-online.  In it he talks about the interesting and encouraging phenomenon of post-traumatic growth which is being witnessed in the majority of survivors of trauma. 

Conversation in a Taxi   Leave a comment

shutterstock_71230366by Kari Mashos

My taxi driver at busy Heathrow Airport met me with a friendly greeting, followed by an announcement that he was Muslim.  At first, I was unsure why he would feel the need to share his religion with me.  But then, sensitive to the fact that there were those who might feel fear and hate toward those of his faith in a climate of heightened security in England (and elsewhere), I reciprocated his handshake with a sincerely warm and friendly greeting.

…  At his prompting, we spoke of the urgent need to demonstrate the brotherhood of man.  Together we acknowledged God as the Father of all—making us all brothers and sisters. We spoke freely of our love for God, our children, and of our mutual desire to treat everyone as we would want to be treated.

Our conversation was evidence to me that despite the hatred and violence so often depicted between those of differing beliefs, there is a spiritual impetus that operates universally, ready and willing to impel every receptive heart to love. Read more

This article, Conversation in a Taxi, was originally published in the a June 2016 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel.   It is also available on JHS-online.   In it Kari talks about how a pure love of God  unites rather than divides mankind.

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