“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” (James 1:17; King James Bible Version (KJV).
“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.” (Psalm 42:11; (KJV).
“Though the cause of evil prosper, Yet ‘tis Truth alone is strong; Though her portion be the scaffold, And upon the throne be wrong, Yet that scaffold sways the future, And behind the dim unknown, Standeth God within the shadow, Keeping watch above His own.” (Last stanza of poem written in 1844 by James Russell Lowell and later shown on page 258 of Christian Science 1932 Hymnal.)
It’s October again, with its darkening skies of evening reminding us that Halloween is soon upon us. It’s a fun time for both children and even some adults, who like wearing scary costumes as they hand out their trick-or-treat goodies. Halloween even gives children a time when they can ‘act out’ the bad, pretend situations and stand up to them, without facing the actual bad things that sometimes threaten them in real life.
In my early teaching years, I noticed that when small children play out their make-believe fears at Halloween, it is actually like a practice session in facing their actual fears of the world, but without the consequences. I observed that several small, timid children became braver during Halloween play-acting when they could ‘play out’ the responses to those who tried to bully them.
Pondering this, I realized that for most adults, this material life experience we must contend with is the biggest bully on the block. We must contend with badly-behaved people, bad working conditions, bad supply issues, and all the other things and situations we call ‘evil’. And even when the good times occur, now and then, they don’t last very long because (as the character, Scarlett O’hara, said in the book, Gone with the Wind) “Tomorrow is another day.” For every day we can experience evils in the form of wars, plagues, weather disasters, and many other troublesome situations that pay no attention to whomever they strike.
Yet, all these lacks of good do not take God into account. The invisible Presence of divine Spirit (God) is with us, in and out of every good and every bad situation we encounter in this material sense of existence. Knowing or realizing the invisible Presence of the Almighty doesn’t mean we won’t encounter the bad behavior, bad weather, lack of supply, nor bad health now and then; rather, it means that all will be reversed and healed when we acknowledge God’s infinite presence and ultimate control over all the spiritual creation that we call ‘heaven’, which exists right where we believe there to be our captivity in a material creation, but is not. God’s perfect and loving spiritual creation is invisibly present to ‘deliver us from evil’ whenever we turn our thoughts inward and realize its invisible presence.
Example: Someone was recently offered a very lucrative job in another state from where the family resided. But their house was not selling, and they needed it to sell, or they could not move. They were told that the housing market was just not active in their current location, and weeks went by without a buyer. They were worried and fearful that this situation would soon make their move impossible.
Learning of this situation, a friend then prayed about their harmony that was always at hand by acknowledging God as their only Authority about their house situation, job situation, and right place. This friend knew that we are each in our own ‘orbit’ as established by God, so their house buyers were already ‘out there’ and known to God. Within less than a week, an offer was made on their current house and it closed quickly. They also promptly found a new house at their new location, near the husband’s new job.
In the kingdom of God, where we each reside, (although we don’t recognize the place because we are mesmerized by the external, material sense of things) the harmonious control by divine Spirit is the ‘Law of the Land’ so to speak. Time does not exist here, for Eternity is the only truth of being we’ve ever had, or will ever have. There is no beginning or end to our eternal lives, for we have always existed within the God-head of infinite Spirit. We existed before we took our finite, material form here and we shall exist when we abandon this material form. Our true names are known only to God, until we awaken from this collective dream-state of finite, material being. Then we shall know (remember) as we are known.
Many good things and many bad things will occur to us, until we pass through this human experience, where we seem to be separated from our spiritual Creator and left on our own. But this is the Adam-dream of existence…not the truth of being; for we have never been separated from our spiritual Source that we call, God.
That is why God can reach us here, to deliver us from whatever material disharmony or situation we’ve gotten ourselves into. Material problems are illusions of the material sense, and that is all. They can change in a ‘Minnesota Minute’ after we turn to God, and the truth of spiritual existence; for God never brings us evil. The Bible tells us, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” (See 1st quotation on page 1).
God is our deliverer of every and any evil this false sense of material being brings upon us. And there is no ‘turning’ with God. That is what is meant by ‘no shadow of turning’. It means that God does not bless us with good, and then change Its Mind. What is good and perfect only blesses…and God holds no grudges nor faults against us, because the divine Mind knows that we really don’t know, or comprehend, what we are doing when we do wrong, or destructive, things. The divine Mind knows that these things are done out of our false, material sense of ourselves and false, material beliefs…not out of our fully awakened spiritual Selves.
Yet, while we still cling to materiality and do destructive things, we cannot perceive the true creation of divine Love and Harmony. Our true, spiritual creation is still here, but we won’t ever discover it through materiality. It’s what we don’t perceive that is important. We don’t perceive God’s presence, when it has never left us. We don’t see God’s blessings, when they are all around us. We don’t perceive the way out of this trouble, or that disaster, because we can’t see it materially, nor hear that ‘still small voice of God’ because we are not listening for it.
Christ Jesus tried to point the way back to our heavenly Harmony (called Heaven) when he said, “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17: 20-21; KJV).
Here, the Master was telling humanity that we would find the spiritual kingdom of God in our own, inner consciousness, and what we hold within our thoughts about spiritual reality. This inner consciousness is often referred to as the ‘Christ Consciousness’ because it is the universal, spiritual consciousness which is connected to everyone.
This Christ Consciousness is our deeper, spiritual consciousness within that knows God’s truth of all things. When we are fully awake spiritually, this spiritual consciousness is our only mind, or mentality, for old things have passed away in our spiritual awakening, and we will have no belief in finite material being, anymore. Living in the light of all spiritual truth, no ‘shadow of turning’ can ever trouble us again.