THE LIFE WITHIN YOU IS . . .
There is a story of a couple who lived in a small town and had two little boys, ages 8 and 10, who were excessively mischievous. The two were always getting into trouble and their parents could be assured that if any mischief occurred in their town, their two young sons were in some way involved. The parents were at their wits' end as to what to do about their sons' behavior.
The mother had heard that a clergyman in town had been successful in disciplining children in the past, so she approached the minister about seeing her sons. The clergyman agreed to speak with the boys, but asked to see them individually.
The 8-year-old went to meet with him first. The clergyman sat the boy down and asked him sternly, "Where is God?" The boy made no response, so the clergyman repeated the question in an even sterner tone, "Where is God?" Again the boy made no attempt to answer. So the clergyman raised his voice even more and shook his finger in the boy's face saying, "WHERE IS GOD?"
At that, the boy bolted from the room, ran directly home and slammed himself in the closet. His older brother followed him into the closet and said, "What happened?"
The younger brother replied, "We are in BIG trouble this time. God is missing, and they think we had something to do with it!"
Isn't it wonderful that we don't believe for a minute that God is missing?! In fact, we believe exactly the opposite. We believe that . . .
* God, the Source and Substance THROUGH all that is,
* God, the Power IN all that is and
* God, the Creator as well as the Creation OF all that is . . .
. . . is very, very, very present.
* we believe that the Life within us is the Life of God and this Life is Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness.
* We believe that the Mind within us is the Mind of God and this Mind is the governing Principle of our Lives.
* And we believe that the Power within us is the Power of God, and this Power is our Divine Authority to create.a
Those are slightly modified words of Ernest Holmes in his book, Living the Science of Mind. And they are nice words, wonderful words, aren't they? So nice and wonderful, I want to say them again.
* We believe that the Life within us is the Life of God and this Life is Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness.
* We believe that the Mind within us is the Mind of God and this Mind is the governing Principle of our Lives.
* And we believe that the Power within us is the Power of God, and this Power is our Divine Authority to create.
We nod our heads and say "yes" to those words, right? But that, my friends, isn't enough. It isn't enough just to agree with those words; we must actually embody them.
What does it mean to embody them? It means to fully and completely integrate them into our consciousness.
Oh, there's that word we defined last week. We said that our "consciousness" is . . . . . . the totality of our beingness that we bring to the table of our lives.
And we said that the totality of our beingness that we bring to the table of our lives is made up of 8 components:
Thoughts - feelings - beliefs - attitudes - values - words - actions . . . and the one we added -- reactions
So to embody something is to fully and completely integrate it into our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, values, attitudes, words, actions and reactions.
Now back to what I was saying. It is when we embody the words I said before (do you remember them?), it is when we fully and completely integrate them into the totality of our beingness, that they become game changers for us; that they give us a clear and direct road map for a way of living in peace, fulfillment and happiness.
THE LIFE WITHIN ME IS THE LIFE OF GOD
So, let's begin the embodying process. We are going to take those words of Ernest Holmes and make them very, very personal:
Say this after me:
* The Life within me is the Life of God and this life my Life is Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness.
But rather than embodying this idea, we often feel like the moldy cabbage safe. The what?? You heard me right: the moldy cabbage safe!
There was once an ad in the NY Times for a plastic safe that looked and felt exactly like a moldy head of cabbage. You didn't need a combination or key to open it because it had a secret clasp that could only be opened if you held it in just the right way. If you did, it would split open, so you could hide your jewels or other valuables inside and slip it into the refrigerator. No one would ever think to look for your valuables inside a head of moldy cabbage!
We can be like that. We think we're just moldy cabbage but really the jewels that are in us, the gifts we have, the Life of God, are all there - inside. We just have to unlock them.
These words help unlock them, so let's do them again: * The Life within me is the Life of God and this Life, my Life, is Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness.
Be with these words for a moment; let them sink in; what do they mean to you? These aren't just true about the person sitting next to you who you think is so enlightened, and you aren't! They are equally true of you!
WHO and HOW would you BE if you embodied these words of Truth? Would you think ill thoughts about yourself anymore? Would you put yourself down any more? Would you think that there is something inherently wrong or bad about you? Would you still think you don't deserve a life of peace, happiness and fulfillment?
I don't think so!!! Rather, you would recognize your greatness. See your uniqueness. Celebrate who you are! Because who you are is the Living God and you are Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness!
Say with me: I am Truth, Beauty, Harmony and Wholeness!
THE MIND WITHIN ME IS THE MIND OF GOD
Now that we've established who and whose we are, let's go to the next statement I shared earlier and let's begin embodying it by saying it together . . .
* The Mind within me is the Mind of God and this Mind, my Mind, is the governing Principle of my Life.
Be with these words for a moment; let them sink in; what do they mean to you? WHO and HOW would you BE if you embodied this Truth? Not sure?
Maybe these words of Fillmore, Talks on Truth, will help clarify: "There is within every man such a place - the "secret place of the Most High." When man finds this place and accepts its privileges as his, he is let into the realm of pure metaphysics, where Mind alone with all its transcendent powers holds free, untrammeled sway. This is the point in every man where God joins hands with him, and where the Word of God finds entrance into his consciousness. It is here that man understands what it is to be inspired by the Spirit to say and do things extraordinary in the sight of the world."b
If you really believed these words, you would be someone who trusted yourself, wouldn't you be? You would be someone who knew that your dreams, hopes and desires are readily available to you. You would be the person who knew that no matter what issues you may be facing, there is a Mind bigger than that.
Spiritual teacher Mary Morrissey often says: Don't bring your big problems to God; rather, bring your Big God to your problems.c
But really, in the Mind, which is our Mind, there are no problems to which there isn't already a solution! Who would you be if you embodied this idea? How about starting to be that person now?
THE POWER WITHIN ME IS THE POWER OF GOD
And now to embody our final thought:
* The Power within me is the Power of God, and this Power is my Divine Authority to create.
Fillmore tells us in Atom-Smashing Power of Mind: "The ideas of God are potential forces waiting to be set in motion through proper formative vehicles. The thinking faculty in man is such a vehicle, and it is through this that the visible universe has existence. Man does not 'create' anything if by this term is meant the producing of something from nothing; but he does make the formless up into form; or rather it is through his conscious co-operation that the one Mind forms its universe. Hence the importance of man's willing co-operation with God in every thought, because unless he is very wise in his thinking, he may be sending forth malformations that will cause both himself and the universe trouble."d
And this so reminds me of what the Master Teacher Jesus did when he, as the Scripture says in Luke, Chapter 4, was led by the Spirit into the wilderness. And he was there forty days being tempted by the devil. [What's the significance of 40 days? Symbolically, all the time it takes for transformation].
The Scripture tells that he didn't eat during this time and was hungry, so the devil said to him: "If you really are who you say you are -- the Son of God - well then just command this stone to turn to bread. That should be a piece of cake for you!"
And then the devil took him up into a high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a single moment of time, and said I'll give you power over all of this if you will worship me.
And he brought Jesus to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said to him: "Again, if you are who you say you are, then get yourself down from here."
And to these temptations, Jesus said: "Get thee behind me, Satan."e
And what is the devil, because we absolutely don't believe there is a being, an entity that is the devil?
Fillmore in Revealing Word says: "The 'devil' is a state of consciousness adverse to the divine good. There is no personal devil. God is the one omnipresent Principle of the universe, and there is no room for any principle of evil, personified or otherwise. . . The devils we encounter are fear, anger, jealousy and other similar negative traits, and they are in ourselves. Christ gives us the power to cast out these devils, thereby cleansing our consciousness."f
So to our negative thoughts, those thoughts that will NOT create that which we desire to have in our lives, let us say "Get thee behind me Satan!"
After Jesus did this, his ministry really began and the Scripture at Luke 4:14 reads: "Then Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit, returned to Galilee, and a report about him spread through all the surrounding country."g
And, like our Master Teacher Jesus, when we realize the power behind our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, attitudes, values, words, actions and reactions so will our lives take off! And we will be the person we came here to be, share the gifts we came here to share and live the life of peace, fulfillment and happiness that we are meant to live.
What a wonderful thing it is to realize and then to embody the Truths that:
* The Life within us is the Life of God;
* The Mind within us is the Mind of God;
* And the Power within us is the Power of God and it is our Divine Authority to create our lives!
What a wonderful thing, indeed, this is!
Because we have been tweaking Holmes words this morning to make them personal, I want to do that one more time in the form of our closing prayer.
It is from Living the Science of Mind, but made personal: "Whatever I believe to be true about God, I declare to be the Truth about myself. The Power within me, which is God, is the Law of Good establishing right action in my life. In this manner, I gain dominion and exercise authority. To think is to create. This is the key which opens the doorway to Wisdom and Power. That doorway is already within me. Somewhere within me the Mind of God reveals the Truth that I was born free, that the will of God for me is one of Goodness, Truth and Beauty; that all the Power there is, is for me, and all the will there is wills Life. I am the image and likeness of this Life; I am a personification of It; I am the personality of God. The Kingdom of Heaven is already within me, and the Law of that Kingdom is Harmony, Peace and Joy."h
And so it is and so we let it be.
aErnest Holmes Living the Science of Mind
bCharles Fillmore, Talks on Truth, p. 72
dFillmore Atom-Smashing Power of Mind, p. 93
fCharles Fillmore Revealing Word p. 54
hErnest Holmes Living the Science of Mind, p. 121