I am grateful for God’s influence in my life.

I finished my daily tasks and was listening to smooth Jazz while putting together a puzzle when I was suddenly hit with a wave of emotion and broke into tears. I thought, what on earth do I have to cry about. I could not ask for a better life, I have everything I need, love, home, family, friends, and a wonderful church family, I lack nothing. My past has been purified and expunged, my present is perfect, and the future is yet to come. So why the tears? Then I realized they were tears of gratitude. Listening to the music, I suddenly had a feeling of peace, harmony, and joy. I realized that through a better understanding of God and my relation to him, I had gained a good life, and I am incredibly grateful.

I recently heard a new friend tell the story of the loss of her only children, two sons. As you can imagine, her grief was almost unbearable. Time went on, and she could not overcome the terrible grief and sadness. She finally turned to another friend who was able to help her. She learned that there is always something to be grateful for. The heartfelt gratitude she finally felt for the years she had with her sons, completely dissolved her grief. She was able to move on with her life and find happiness again.

I have learned to think in terms of what I am gaining, not what I am losing. I’ve learned to think of the unpleasant and sometimes heart wrenching things that happen, as opportunities for spiritual growth. I know that is not always easy. I needed to be patient with myself, nothing happens overnight. I know God is the only power, but I can only demonstrate what I understand; other things I needed to handle the best way I know how. “… come naturally into Spirit through better health and morals and as the result of spiritual growth.” Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures p. 485:15

Speaking of growth, what I have begun to understand through my study and research is evolution. It shows mankind’s progress in understanding his spiritual identity. As we grow in our understanding, we, and our environment change. It took millions of years to reach this point, who knows how much longer it will take for us to evolve from matter into a full understanding of our spiritual identity, and put off the old man for the new, the true image and likeness of God, and see this universe in its full spiritual glory. 

In Genesis I, it tells of God’s creation and how good it is. “And God saw everything he had made, and behold it was very good.” (Gen. I: 31)

Then in Genesis II, the Lord God tells how the serpents ‘lie’ led us to the knowledge of evil, which is not a part of God’s creation. Then the rest of the old testament shows our struggles trying to find our way out of the evil darkness and back to God’s creation. Then God sent Jesus to show us how to get back to Genesis I. At the end of Revelations, it tells us when the battle against evil is over, and we are walking in Jesus’ footsteps what we can expect. 

In God’s creation, there is no war, hate, hunger, sorrow, no more harmful weather, and catastrophic earth changes. God creates only good, as stated in Genesis I.

When we have won the battle over the flesh, then all things will be made new. We will see life with new eyes. “And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.” (Rev. 21:3–5)

It is not our job to fight against evil but to feel the Love that dissolves it. Evil pales in the face of Love. “Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you,” (II Chronicles 20:17)

I know it seems there are two things going on, a material and a spiritual existence, but in truth, there is only one, our spiritual existence, but our perception of it is flawed. We have lost our way.  

I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to learn about God and my relation to Him. To know I (and all of you) can demonstrate all His good qualities, by focusing our thoughts and desires on who we are and what it means to be His image and likeness.

“Are we really grateful for the good already received? Then we shall avail ourselves of the blessings we have, and thus be fitted to receive more.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy, p. 3:22–24)

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