Endless Love

Having consistent affection and love in our lives is something for which we all hope and strive. We may find it in a variety of ways — companionship, friendship, activities, sports, work, or church. The way we find and express love is art of our continual connection to the source of all love. This love we express and the love we have is never limited, nor is it finite — it’s eternal and infinite. This endless Love is actually divine Love, or God.

Acknowledge how lovely you are

It’s important to acknowledge how lovely and lovable you are—now. This isn’t narcissistic, nor is it selfish, when we start from the basis that you are divine Love’s reflection and Love’s idea. Because you are the object of Love’s expression, you are already made from, and filled with, only the same spiritual goodness that constitutes the Soul of divine Love—Spirit. In other words your being and spiritual nature are defined only by divine Love making you lovely, beautiful, good, holy, and lovable. You’re forever worthy of love and affection because divine Love (Father-Mother Love, God) made you and loves you. Even if we’ve made mistakes, none of us are “damaged goods.” The way Love sees us, eternally, is good, pure, and holy — this is how you should see yourself, too!

Human affection is not poured forth vainly, even though it meet no return. Love enriches the nature, enlarging, purifying, and elevating it. The wintry blasts of earth may uproot the flowers of affection, and scatter them to the winds; but this severance of fleshly ties serves to unite thought more closely to God, for Love supports the struggling heart until it ceases to sigh over the world and begins to unfold its wings for heaven.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p.57

Discerning Love

Our experiences lead us forward. Through these experiences of relationships — platonic and romantic —we can expect to know a little better about what defines love, and perhaps also discern what isn’t love. More than this we can also be gaining clearer insights into what is divine Love. Perhaps you’ve heard that God is Love—God is divine Love—the source of all love and good. Taking time to acknowledge your eternal, unbreakable relationship to divine Love helps us discern better the love we want to express toward others, and the kind of love we want expressed toward us.

The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.
—Jeremiah 31:3

Let God lead in your quest for love

The two-way street of love, as well as its fast-moving highways of relationships, may feel hard to navigate. However, the more you understand God’s tender loving care for you, the more clear you’ll feel in your quest. So it’s important to let God lead in the dance of love. Because God is Love, Love already knows only perfect, good, and lasting love—and this lasting love is already bestowed  on you because you are God’s beloved child and idea. You aren’t left out of the perfect relationship, when in fact, you’re already in it with God. Understanding and acknowledging this fact — that you’re already in the perfect relationship — helps us sidestep the landmines of lust, envy, false desires, mistaken feelings, or even the fear of settling for a lukewarm relationship. We can feel satisfied, now, with the Love that is already eternal and infinite — full of blessings and lasting joy.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
—Proverbs 3:5-6

 

Debunking 7 misconceptions about God

Generally speaking, I believe these are the top misconceptions about God that are most often repeated. These are things I’ve heard in conversations with friends, read in books and magazines, or seen in the media.

To me, taking the inspired Word of the Bible fully disputes these beliefs about God. I also deeply appreciate the writings of Mary Baker Eddy and how she carefully and clearly defines God with uplifting, inspiring, and healing concepts and proofs. What’s more, through the healing power of Christian Science I’ve seen consistent proof that God is only a force of good and is infinite Love.

So, to me, let me share with you what I think are seven of the most believed misconceptions about God and why they’re wrong.

#7 / God creates or causes natural disasters

Yes, God is often blamed for weather. But God doesn’t send bad weather to punish or destroy man. Since God is the Creator, and is Life and Love, God could not cause evil nor bring death upon His own creation.

Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.
—I Kings 19:11-12

#6 / God made man a sinner

There is an often stated opinion that man was created as a miserable sinner. But the Bible (Genesis 1:26-27) tells us that God made man in His own image and likeness — therefore man, in God’s image, is pure, holy, and good.

Man is incapable of sin, sickness, and death. The real man cannot depart from holiness, nor can God, by whom man is evolved, engender the capacity or freedom to sin. A mortal sinner is not God’s man.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p.475

#5 / God loves and hates

God is Love. Jesus proved this and his healing proofs tells us that God does not hate and love man — God loves His children and divine Love destroys hate, sin, and sickness.

Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
—I John 4:15, 16

#4 / God lives in the clouds

The idea that God could live in the clouds or that God sits in particular spots for moments in time does not sound like God to me, but sounds more like a fable or a mythological god who is not God. Rather, God must be omnipresent—is infinite and eternal and fills all space.

The God-principle is omnipresent and omnipotent. God is everywhere, and nothing apart from Him is present or has power.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health, p.473

#3 / God is dead

God could never die because God is infinite and eternal Life itself — the source of all life and being. And based on Jesus’ example we’ve seen death overcome by his complete trust in the fact that God is Life. This proved that  death, dying, etc. has no part with God.

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
—Revelation 22:13

#2 / God created matter

Simply put God is Spirit and matter is the opposite of Spirit. God could not create something that is opposed to Himself, and there cannot be an opposite to Spirit as long as Spirit is infinite and eternal.

Spirit, God, has created all in and of Himself. Spirit never created matter. There is nothing in Spirit out of which matter could be made, for, as the Bible declares, without the Logos, the Æon or Word of God, “was not anything made that was made.”
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health, p.335

#1 / God is a man—a personality or lived in a body

This to me is another one of the most confusing and confounding beliefs put forth by human opinions. The Book of Genesis defines God as creating both men and women — “both male and female” — I believe that masculine and feminine qualities both belong to God. I also love thinking of God as being mother-like just as much as much as God is a Father — Father-Mother Love. And more than this, God is Spirit, Soul, and is infinite and could not inhabit a material or mortal body because mortality and Spirit are opposites.

God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
—Numbers 23:19

Why shouldest thou be as a man astonied, as a mighty man that cannot save? yet thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us not.
—Jeremiah 14:9

Speak truth to power

So often we see people who appear downtrodden, or seem disadvantaged by those who are in power. It’s not often either that we actually see truth spoken to those who seem to hold powerful positions. However, the Bible gives us keys on how to speak truth to power. And one of the best ways to begin is to start in prayer—it’s how many Biblical heroes began.

Lord, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear: To judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.
—Psalms 10:17, 18

Start with humility

One of my favorite examples of speaking truth to power happens in a story that involves healing of leprosy in the Old Testament: II Kings, Chapter 5. Naaman is a very powerful captain of the Syrian Army, but he has leprosy. He goes to the prophet Elisha for healing, but Naaman gets angry when Elisha tells him to dip himself in the Jordan River rather than Syrian rivers. Plus, Naaman is put off by the fact that he has to do something — dip himself in the river — when he expected Elisha to do something astonishing and “strike his hand over the place and recover the leper (II Kings 5:11)”

Unknown heroes in the story approach Naaman. I think these unnamed servants of Naaman must have gathered up a lot of courage, and with great humility, said to him, “My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean? (II Kings 5:13)” This humility required a lot of courage by these unknown helpers who spoke truth to power fearlessly.

Protest? Turn to God in prayer

In a media rich world it may seem that the best way to reach people is though talking, posting, or protesting. Don’t get me wrong — these are all valid steps. For me, starting my protest for any unjust circumstance through prayer always leads my feet to the right path. By turning to God quietly and listening for peaceful guidance and uplifting ideas, I find this has helped me find the best ways to speak to truth to power. In my own experience I have been led to talk to deans, Church officials, state congressmen, and other ways. All which had lasting and healing outcomes.

Prayer, watching, and working, combined with self-immolation, are God’s gracious means for accomplishing whatever has been successfully done for the Christianization and health of mankind.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p.1

Let God lead the way

True humility starts with knowing who actually holds power. Starting from the basis that God is the only power enables us to trust God and know that God is opening the way—for us and for all who are facing disadvantaged circumstances. Knowing that God, divine Principle, is doing all and is fully omnipotent and omniscient, can help us trust that God is not just speaking to those wanting social justice, but that God is speaking to those who seem to hold a lot of sway—and that God is leading all of us toward improved circumstances that bless all.

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
—I Timothy 2:1-4

God hears your call—be sure to listen for His

Jesus knew that God heard his call—always. Yes, Jesus is the Son of God, but he also acknowledged that he’s the Son of man. So God’s power and presence on earth wasn’t just because of the divinity that Jesus expressed — it was because Jesus was proving to us that God is only a force for good, divine Love. Divine Love tenderly cares for each of us. With this fact in mind it’s important that we know God is also guiding us, so listening for His call is equally important. Knowing this helps avoid the belief that we’re just pleading to a God who is “somewhere up there.” Being humble enough to listen teaches us to trust God’s power is governing all.

For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour:
Since thou wast precious in my sight, thou hast been honourable, and I have loved thee: therefore will I give men for thee, and people for thy life. Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.
—Isaiah 43:3 (to :), 4-7