ARE YOU READY TO FAN THE FLAME?
Our theme this month is . . . ARE YOU READY? Last week, I asked if you were ready to GET IN THE GAME -- to which you all enthusiastically said, "Yes!"
We come together this morning to ask the question: ARE YOU READY TO FAN THE FLAME? And I am sure you will say "yes" to being ready without even knowing what I really mean. But what do I mean? What flame am I talking about? Perhaps it's obvious; perhaps not -- The flame of God within.
Ernest Holmes Science Of Mind: "The spark which burns at the center of our own soul is caught from the living and eternal flame of the Spirit."a It's that spark I'm referring to. That spark which is part of the Eternal Flame.
Ernest Holmes uses this flame/spark metaphor several times in the Science of Mind textbook. I particularly like this statement: "When we separate ourselves from the Divine Fire, we become like an isolated spark. We are strong only when united with Life. . . . This is why Jesus said he could do nothing of himself, but could work only as the currents of divinity ran through his personal mentality. . . . It is only as we live in conscious union with the Spirit, and consciously let It work through us that we really live."b
That last sentence is our key statement for this morning: "It is only as we live in conscious union with the Spirit, and consciously let It work through us that we really live." That's the flame I'm asking you this morning if you are ready to fan. The flame of living in conscious union with Spirit and consciously letting IT work though you -- so that you might really live.
In order to be vibrantly, fully alive, we need to fan the flame of God within. In fact -- we need to ignite it! That's the source of our happiness; that's when we begin to experience and express life as the abundant, powerful, joyous God-beings that we are. That's when we can be transformative lights in the world.
I love this statement by Ernest Holmes in the Science Of Mind: "As the Christ awakens, our divine spark - shot from central fires of the Universal Flame - is able to warm other souls by the radiance of its own self-unfoldment."c
Same thing that Jesus said: "If I be lifted up, others will be lifted up as well."d
So, are you ready for that?! Good! Then, it requires some conscious action on your part.
Johnnie Coleman in her book, Open Your Mind and Be Healed, wrote: "The Life Principle resides in our soul, ready, willing and able to respond to our command. But it cannot force itself upon us; we must activate its potential."e
That's where fanning the flame comes in! And that's what we will talk about this morning.
Now, I realize that the last Sunday I was pretty long-winded, with lots of points and subpoints in my talk.
In fact, last week I noticed a man get up and leave during the middle of my message. And he returned just before the service ended.
After the service, I asked him where he had gone.
I went to get a haircut," was his reply.
"But, why didn't you do that before the service started?" I asked.
"Because," the gentleman said, "I didn't need one then."
Not so today - I want to make a simple point - and then give you some practical counsel about it.
The simple point is this: We activate this potential in us, we fan the flame of our divinity, we live in conscious union with Spirit, when we GET ON PURPOSE.
You have a purpose. Within you, there is a purpose. And this purpose will not leave you until it is fulfilled. It will actually be like the pea under the mattress of the princess (remember that play??). It won't let you rest until you discover it.
You might postpone its fulfillment for years. But because God implanted this purpose in the center of your being where it cannot be erased, it cannot be lost either. What we can do, and we do this quite well, we can lose sight of it. We can temporarily forget it (for a very long time). We can argue against it; pretend that it isn't there. Yet because God has put it there, we cannot erase it, we cannot lose it.
So what is this purpose? What's your purpose? It isn't to win the lottery, although you very well might. It isn't to be chosen to be the CEO of your company, although you very well might be. It isn't to become the savior of the world -- and you may or may not do that! Your purpose isn't to marry a certain person or to take an around the world cruise or to turn left or to turn right. Although these things very well might be a part of your experience.
Your purpose is to awaken to who and what you are in God and who and what God is in you.
Now, I've said that before from this very pulpit. And I think those words are wonderful and absolutely true -- but what do they mean to us in a practical, day to day sense?
Two fundamental elements exist in a purpose of awakening to who and what you are in God and who and what Got is in you: Joy and Service.
What brings you Joy? How does it serve the world?
Many, many ways to approach defining your purpose. Visioning . . . Laurie Beth Jones in her book The Path offers a wonderful visioning process.
And, there is a very powerful and extremely simple exercise in Jack Canfield's book Success Principles. It involves spending a little time in quite reflection asking yourself three questions and then combining the answers to them in a statement. I'd suggest buying the book to get the full benefit of it -- but I'm going to give you the three questions now:
1. What are two of your unique personal qualities? (those qualities might be - enthusiasm, creativity, logic, passion, humor, gift of music)
2. What are one or two ways you ENJOY expressing those qualities when interacting with others? (ex. - support, inspire, entertain, motivate, teach)
3. Assume the world is expressing perfectly right now. What does this world look like? How is everyone interacting with everyone else? What does it feel like? Write your answer in a statement in the present tense, describing the ultimate condition, the perfect world as you see it and feel it. Remember, a perfect world is a joyous place to be! (ex. - Everyone is freely expressing their own talents. Everyone is working in harmony. Everyone is expressing love.)
4. Finally, combine the answers to the three prior questions into a single statement. (ex. - My purpose is to use my creativity and enthusiasm to support and inspire others to freely express their talents in a harmonious and loving way.)
And there you have a purpose statement. This is how you are going to express who and what you are in God and how God is going to express who and what He/She/It is in you.
Why is it so important to do this? With a purpose, life seems to fall into place. To be "on purpose" means you're doing what you love to do, doing what you're good at and accomplishing what's important to you.
Being on purpose means God is expressing at the highest level through you!
And when you are on purpose, the people, resources and opportunities needed to fulfill that purpose naturally gravitate to you because you have intentionally activated the Law of Attraction.
And, the world benefits because when you act in alignment with your true life-purpose, all of your actions automatically serve others.
So, you said you were ready to fan the flame. If you really are, take time this afternoon to do so by going through this or your own process. And, I'd love to know what your purpose statements are. Send them to me.
And remember: when the spark of the Divine found in each heart is fanned into flame, together we will set the whole world on fire.
And so it is!
aErnest Holmes Science of Mind, pg 414
bErnest Holmes Science of Mind, pg 463
cErnest Holmes Science of Mind, pg 368
eJohnnie Coleman Open Your Mind and Be Healed