God Not Chance

 

Norman B. Holmes, C.S.B., of Chicago, Illinois

Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,

The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts

 

"God Not Chance" was the title of a lecture on Christian Science by Norman B. Holmes, C.S.B., of Chicago, Illinois, member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts, held in the Moorestown Senior High School Auditorium on Thursday, November 3, under the auspices of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, Moorestown.

The lecturer was introduced by Mrs. Pell Moorer, Second Reader, of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, Moorestown.

The lecturer spoke substantially as follows:

 

In many parts of the country around the turn of the century, farmers used old-fashioned kerosene lamps; and with the winds howling through the rolling hills, these lamps were forever being blown out. One day the owner of a general store in a small country town in Iowa received a shipment of a modern gadget called an electric torch.

To advertise this new product he put an ad in the weekly "Bugle" which read; "Come and see a light that never goes out, no matter how much the winds blow." This evening we're going to talk about an even better light the law of God. It is the spiritual light of divine goodness which never goes out. The ceaseless operation of this invariable law of good can be proved in the experience of each one of us.

Yet there's a common belief that we're subject to laws of chance, that what happens to us depends upon what kind of luck we have. We often hear such expressions as, "How's your luck holding out?" or "I've had nothing but bad luck lately," or "I've been pretty lucky this week." Throughout human history we've been educated to believe that even the mightiest of human efforts can't set aside the laws of chance. Even in the Bible, the book of Ecclesiastes declares: "The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all" (9:11). In today's world millions of people, unacquainted with the divine law which underlies all existence, believe that individual life purposes and experiences are subject to chance. When ill health, evil, unhappiness appear in our lives, we're tempted to complain that we're victims of chance, of bad luck. Actually there's no such thing as luck good or bad. A wholly good God governs our lives, not luck. The law of God, Spirit, is invincible and supreme. But in order to see the operation of God's law as invariable in our experience, we must thoroughly understand the nature of His law.

Thousands of years ago the Psalmist rejoiced that man can never wander beyond the reach of God's law. He said, "If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me" (Ps. 139:9, 10). Later, the record of Christ Jesus' entire experience proved that God's law is universal and available to all.

Jesus' whole career was one long proof of God's control. In setting aside the laws of chance and in repeatedly demonstrating that God's law governs man, he overcame for himself and others all types of misfortune. Day by day he turned to God for direction and strength to go forward. And forward he went, in an ever-ascending scale of service and achievement. He knew that God's law underwrites man's eternal progress. In his own life-experience he proved for all men that, when we turn in trust to God, He unerringly guides our lives.

By sermon, parable and example, the master Christian taught that divine law is always at hand to overcome evil and misfortune. Because he knew the divine law of Life, he healed the sick. Because he saw the law of spiritual perfection, he brought harmony to troubled lives. Because he discerned God's law of abundant good, crowds of hungry people were fed.

Finally after these and many other proofs of the presence and power of God's unerring law, he found himself on trial before Pilate. Betrayed by one of his disciples and on trial for his life! Yet he could discern and insist that God alone governed. He knew that any circumstance, however grievous it might seem, must give way to God's supremacy. Therefore he could say to Pilate: "Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above" (John 19:11). In his career of spiritual living his resurrection conclusively proved there need be no yielding to misfortune. Jesus knew and demonstrated that God's law is supreme.

Each one of us can become acquainted with the spiritual fact that God's goodness rules the universe and every detail of our experience. It doesn't matter what misfortune may present itself. We can prove that God's strong hand, His law, holds us safe and leads us forward. But in order to do this we must first of all understand the nature of divine law, see through the claims of the so-called laws of chance, and learn how to prove for ourselves the incontestable supremacy of God.

 

The Nature of God's Law

Many people believe that God is all-power and the only creator. But because they see evil and limitation around them, they conclude that God must have created these evils and shared His power with them. This is impossible because God is wholly good. We need to understand this. We need to see that His supremacy extends to all of His creation in the eternal continuity of His goodness.

Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, discerned divine goodness. It was a completely natural unfoldment for her to perceive that the law of God is wholly good. From early childhood she lived close to the things of God. Bible readings were a daily rule in her parents' home. As the boy Jesus discussed the things of God with the learned men of the day, she as a girl delighted in discussing spiritual truths with some of the fine pastors in New England. She felt so close to those blessed men that she once wrote of herself: "I became early a child of the Church, an eager lover and student of vital Christianity" (Message to the Mother Church for 1901, p. 32). Even as a teenager she turned the thought of her friends to God's goodness. When she was only sixteen she wrote a letter referring to God as "the Source of all good" (Historical Sketches by Clifford P. Smith, p. 41).

Mrs. Eddy recognized that human experience often seems filled with misfortune and mischance. But she was convinced that God's loving and kind direction governs and rules all in active harmony. In 1848 when still in her twenties she wrote a friend (ibid), "I trust the future has stores of joy for you; and with life in its endless vicissitudes let us ever remember there is One 'who careth for us' too wise to err, too good to be unkind. On him you may rely, and find a Father and a friend."

So when she came to write her major work. "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," it was logical for her to define "good" as God. The definition reads: "Good. God; Spirit; omnipotence; omniscience; omnipresence; omni-action" (p. 589). Goodness then is the chief characteristic of the law of God and supports and includes the others the spirituality, the invariableness, and the supremacy of His law. God is perpetual goodness, forever declaring that omnipotent good is all.

Since God is the only creator, His law of goodness underlies the real nature of all of us. It forever and ever sustains and maintains all creation in perfect order and completeness. This great truth of God's goodness, when understood and acknowledged, operates as law to eliminate misfortune of every sort. It demonstrates the supremacy of good everywhere. The Psalmist declares: "That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good" (Ps. 104:28).

Since God is infinite Spirit, His law is not only wholly good but entirely spiritual as well. It governs the action and substance of man by spiritual not material means. It's important to recognize this because what is called matter is just a supposition that there is a power, a substance, besides God. A definition of "matter" in Science and Health reads in part: "The opposite of Truth; the opposite of Spirit; the opposite of God" (p. 591). If the opposite of God were real, God, good would be limited. But this is impossible. Spiritual law declares that God, good, has no opposite and is not nor ever can be limited.

But if we ignorantly measure ourselves by a sense of limitation, we submit to matter instead of accepting the spiritual and unlimited standard of God's perfection. What we need to see is that God's spiritual law of all-pervading goodness operates right where matter with its claims of limitation seems to be. The divine presence destroys these claims, God's spiritual law can't be weighed or counterbalanced or limited by a contrary power of any sort. Matter simply can't stand in the face of the allness of God, Spirit. The understanding that God is Spirit and is All, erases from our thinking the conviction of matter's reality. Matter has no power. It can't operate as law. Therefore the apparent limitations in the world around us can't blind us. They are the supposed opposite of Spirit's law of abundant goodness. Therefore they are unreal. God, Spirit, has no opposite. God is All.

 

God's Law Never Errs

The inspired study of the Bible teaches us that God's law is also characterized by the unfailing order of perpetual goodness. This is why in Christian Science, we name God divine Principle. Principle is unerring; it never mistates; it forever unfolds man and the universe in invariable goodness. Serene and safe above human opinions and conjectures, it governs all with the impersonal manifesto of unimpeachable perfection. The fuzzy conception of infinite goodness and spiritual law as variable or partial is illogical; it doesn't make sense. God's nature is always characterized by impartial divine Principle, bringing forth justice and harmony. He extends the goodness of His nature to all His creation alike. Divine Principle is forever aware of the constancy of good, the invariable nature of harmony, the ever-presence of divine order.

When we recognize that God, divine Principle, is also divine Love, we can see that it's impossible for God ever to be unloving or to create an unloving person. The law of divine Love outlaws and overcomes every appearance of anything unlike itself. The infinitude of God's goodness and love excludes from His universe limitations and evil of every sort. If God could know or permit evil, sickness, death, the limitless power of such knowing of evil would lead the universe to chaos. Webster defines chaos as "a state of things in which chance is supreme." But there is no such state; God governs the universe and man in perpetual order. Therefore God's invariable nature as divine Love enforces constant obedience to His law of harmonious being. It brings out in our lives spiritual qualities such as tenderness, strength, and constant love. The eternal presence of God as Love is an impartial and unvarying law to each one of us, which disputes and eventually eliminates every discordant claim.

And the law of divine Principle, Love, is an intelligent law. Therefore divine Principle, or Love, is also infinite divine Mind, the source of all intelligence; infinite Mind brings to man the intelligence to act in a wise, orderly, loving, and enlightened manner. The intelligence of God governs everywhere in perpetual order. When we realize that divine intelligence is the nature of the God-principle governing all, we find justice and kindness characterizing our action, and the actions of others. The impartial decrees of divine wisdom set aside the claims of limited human reasoning that lead to selfishness and injustice. Mind, divine intelligence, forever holds man safe, guards him with spiritual laws.

Finally, the wholly good God, the Spirit or Principle who has the infinite intelligence to govern you and me with invariable wisdom, is also omnipotent. His law is supreme and unchallenged. God is the King, the only Lawgiver, the only Sovereign. Fundamental to the fact that God is the one and only supreme power governing man and the universe is the fact that He is All all power, all energy, all creativity. Because God is supreme in power, because God is All, eternally good and perfect, His law inevitably and irresistibly annihilates all evil, imperfection, and limitation. No other power or claim to power can ever displace God's order and harmony that forever govern man and the universe. Nothing can oppose the ceaseless integrity and expanding purpose of our lives directed by God's law. God is supreme. No area of man's experience can ever be outside His control. And every one of us can prove this.

The Psalmist says: "Let them know that God ruleth in Jacob until the ends of the earth" (Ps, 59:13). Since God is All and His law everywhere expressed, no chance disorder can infringe upon man's obedience to the divine government.

The nature of God's law then is that it is wholly good, wholly spiritual, wholly invariable and impartial wholly supreme. To understand this is the first necessary step towards demonstrating that God's law, not chance governs all of us.

 

Claims of Chance Are Overruled by God's Law

Evil occurrences are often classified as bad luck. And the appearance of good health, happiness, business promotions, are often passed off as good luck. Faith in luck, bad or good, subjects us to the ravages of the one and to the variableness of the other. If we believe in good luck, then we'll find it's like a kerosene lamp. It may be blown out by the winds of chance.

Faith in luck, good or bad, stems from faulty reasoning based on the premise that life is physical, in matter. Until we awaken to the Science of spiritual understanding, our attitude toward the world around us will be largely determined by the material senses. When human understanding is directed by the five material senses, it is always arguing for insecurity. Mrs. Eddy writes: "Accepting the verdict of these material senses, we should believe man and the universe to be the football of chance and sinking into oblivion" (Rudimental Divine Science, p. 5).

From early childhood most of us have been educated to believe that those events that transpire between the cradle and the grave constitute our life. We've been educated to believe that we live in matter and its formations, and that we're restricted by the chance development of these formations as to the possibility of achievement and success. Fear arises from the belief that man is trapped by matter; and that man eventually will be killed by the death of matter. Anxiety arises from the claim that matter is needed to satisfy man's needs and that there isn't enough of it to go around. From this belief come ambition, greed, wars, lust, hatred, anger, and envy.

The claim that chance governs our lives would force us into a box. On one side it would argue that the only way to overcome misfortunes is through material remedies. Then the question arises: Where do we get the intelligence to choose the right defense against misfortune? On the other side is the claim that every mishap is a stroke of inevitable fate and chance and that we should submit to whatever these allot us. Finally, there comes the assertion that there is no power available to overcome misfortune, so why try?

Probably no one in Bible history ran into more bad luck, so to speak, than Joseph. First, he was sold into Egyptian slavery by his envious brothers. Then he was thrown into prison through the deceit of his master's wife. But the Bible tells us: "The Lord was with him, and that which he did, the Lord made it to prosper" (Gen. 39:23). Joseph didn't complain of his bad luck. He didn't spend time wondering what chance misunderstanding had caused his brothers or his master's wife to treat him so badly. He placed his trust in God.

Moving forward in steady steps of progress, he became the food conservator for all the land of Egypt in the time of famine. He proved that God's goodness is in control everywhere. When he met his brothers once more, he not only forgave them, he heaped food and gifts upon them, saying: "Now therefore, be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life" (Gen. 45:5). Joseph proved that only God could govern his life. He saw through the suggestions that he was a victim of bad luck. He saw through them because he knew God was in control. He proved there was neither good luck nor bad luck but only the law of God's goodness in operation everywhere.

 

God's Law Brings Healing

At one time, a Christian Scientist I know found himself trapped by the material senses. For no apparent reason he was suffering with severe internal pain. Fear for his business position and even for his life haunted him. Finally, he had to give up many normal activities and could only walk a block at a time. He was tempted to believe that he had suffered a stroke of bad luck, the chance development of this discordant physical condition, and that it might snuff out his life. But, though he was tempted to despair for his life, he never really gave up his conviction that God would heal him and restore his health.

One evening he read through again the familiar one hundred and thirty-ninth Psalm, from which I have already quoted: "If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me." The words, "Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me," stood out to him in bold relief. Like a clear light from the sun, there burst upon his thought the conviction that he was dependent not upon chance bodily conditions, good or bad, but upon God alone. For the first time he realized that his life, his substance, his bodily identity, were not dependent upon matter, but were held safe in the hand of God.

All plaguing sense of being a victim of bad luck vanished. All resentment towards the suffering he was experiencing disappeared. He recognized that his life and progress were not subject to chance bodily conditions or to maladjustments in business relationships. He saw that, right where he was, God really constituted the only identity and purpose he could express. He saw that this identity was spiritual, not material or physical. He recognized that his purpose in life was divine and forever unfolding under God's law. He realized he was healed. Within a few weeks time, all symptoms of disease and suffering vanished. That healing took place over ten years ago, and has been complete.

In Science and Health Mrs. Eddy asks: "Will you bid a man let evils overcome him, assuring him that all misfortunes are from God, against whom mortals should not contend? Will you tell the sick that their condition is hopeless, unless it can be aided by a drug or climate? Are material means the only refuge from fatal chances? Is there no divine permission to conquer discord of every kind with harmony, with Truth and Love? We should remember that Life is God, and that God is omnipotent" (p. 394).

Our friend provided a vigorous "NO" to the first three of Mrs. Eddy's questions. He proved that God doesn't send misfortunes, but, to the contrary, is always able and willing to deliver us from every mischance when we lean radically on His power alone. He proved that God's spiritual law, not matter, is our refuge from "fatal chances." To her last question, "Is there no divine permission to conquer discord of every kind with harmony, with Truth and Love?" he worked out a resounding "YES." There is not only divine permission but divine authority, a divine demand to overcome every random discordant condition with the unerring, harmonious, health-giving mandate of divine law.

This man proved the nature of God's law to be wholly good, entirely spiritual, forever invariable, always supreme. Each one of us can do the same thing, but for this we need to be alert to the claims of chance. Its guises and disguises are numerous.

 

Stripping Its Disguises from Chance

Many people believe that their lot in life is governed by the law of averages. Faith in wrongly applied statistics makes others believe that a certain proportion of the population will become ill due to sudden changes in weather, or that a certain percentage will be sickly because of deficiencies in their diet, or that due to heredity some are fated to be long-lived and others to be short-lived.

Bowing down to such miscalculations much of humanity gropes about anxiously, trying every new remedy that chances along. By one material means or another men try to ward off misfortune. They anxiously seek to preserve life in a physical body which in any event they admit is doomed to eventual destruction.

Or again physiological theories would persuade us that the chance mating of our parents, grandparents, and even of ancestors unknown to us can result in the limiting laws of heredity. When we take pride in what appears to be the good luck of favorable hereditary strains, we open ourselves to the claims of bad luck, of undesirable hereditary traits also.

Finally, there is the chance of incorrect religious upbringing that would make us accept suffering on the ground that God permits it or even inflicts it. Or the chance of exposure to wrong educational theories suggesting that God does not exist and therefore He can't rule our lives.

No suppositional law based on averages, or on statistics, or on probabilities can govern our lives or our bodies when we turn with intelligent reliance to the law of God. No physiological theories, no false religious upbringing, no wrong education can bind us. And we need have no faith in material heredity, good or bad. The only true history for any of us is God's wonderful assurance to Jesus, "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:17). The history of God's man is written in heaven, and includes no notations of chance hereditary laws.

In the creation of God, forever unfolding according to His law, there is no room for sin, sickness, or death. In God's realm of infinite divine Truth, there is no fear, nor any fearful man. In divine Principle, we can find no sickness, no imperfection, no malady, or deformity. God has made His creatures in perfect symmetry, wholeness, beauty, and order. In the kingdom of eternal Mind, of everlasting Truth, there is no death, inaction, overaction, inharmonious action, discordant action, fearful action, or painful action. God doesn't inflict us with the bad luck of such qualities or conditions; and we need not bow down to them.

And this is of equal importance to recognize: God hasn't made good luck either. He hasn't made undependable health, well-being, and success. He hasn't made a shallow tinselly kind of good that at one moment is all sparkle and then, when our so-called run of good luck ends, will fade and disappear. To know God and His law aright enables us to prove the perfection of His creation in our lives.

An understanding of God as the source of man's being gives us assurance of God's presence and power ever with us. True understanding proves God's capacity to govern man in freedom and dominion. It insists upon our freedom as the expression of divine Mind and on the infinite unfolding of our capacities not at random nor by good or by bad luck, but under divine law.

 

How God's Law Overcomes Chance

Now let us ask ourselves, How can each of us prove God's good government in our lives so that we can overcome the claims of chance which present themselves? We need to replace ignorant faith in chance with understanding faith in God's goodness and power. The power of God's divine action remains hidden if we have more faith in chance than in God. On the other hand we dismiss the claims of misfortune if we understandingly place our reliance entirely on God's good government.

How can we do this? Through the Christ, which Jesus proved and demonstrated throughout his earthly mission, and through prayer enlightened by an understanding of the Christ.

What was it that guided Jesus' career, saved him from storms at sea, from angry crowds, and finally from death itself? It was his understanding of God's presence. He proved that God with him was the Christ, the active power of divine goodness overcoming every evil occurrence. His response to the law of God, his application of this law, governed his entire experience. He knew God as the only presence, governing man and the universe with invariable goodness. With him chance, better or worse, had no authority, no law.

Of the divine presence Jesus said: "He that sent me is with me: . . . I do always those things that please him" (John 8:29). He recognized that it was man's real nature to express the limitless activity of Spirit, the goodness and intelligence of Mind, the majesty and order of divine law. Furthermore, Jesus knew that every man has a divine right to the same understanding of God which he had; he told his followers and all of us that we would do the works he did and greater works.

God's presence with Jesus and with each one of us, operating as the law of infinite good, is called the Christ. It is the true idea of God, of man, and of all that really exists. The Christ, Truth, is always at hand to save and deliver. It is God's healing redemptive power shaping our lives and governing them in perfect harmony.

Mrs. Eddy proved this. Her inspired thought awakened to the spiritual fact of God's presence with her. She discovered that this presence was the same Christ, Truth, which was with Jesus. She discovered that the Christ is the divine power of God which is always active in every human consciousness, and which requires only the catalyst of spiritual understanding to bring it to light.

From girlhood, and through many years of womanhood, Mrs. Eddy was buffed as if by winds of misfortune. Her marriage was shattered in its first year by the death of her husband. Poverty, separation from family and ill health followed this tragedy. Less spiritually-minded people than Mrs. Eddy might well have concluded that they were the victims of the worst of bad luck. But throughout these trials, she held to a persistent faith that God would some day reveal to her a method of salvation.

Strong in faith and led by the divine hand, she discovered at last the law of God and named it Christian Science. Once and for all she learned that chance was not the law of the universe and could therefore be overcome.

From that time God's good purpose never escaped her vision. Under divine inspiration she wrote the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," and she founded the Church of Christ, Scientist, with its worldwide activities. Of the unfolding discovery and pioneer work she writes: "It became evident that the divine Mind alone must answer, and be found as the Life, or Principle, of all being; and that one must acquaint himself with God, if he would be at peace. He must be ours practically, guiding our every thought and action" (Retrospection and Introspection, p. 28).

Mrs. Eddy's discovery has brought the teachings of Jesus to the world in a way that can be understood and applied by everyone as unfailing scientific law. Her writings make clear that God presents Himself to all men alike through His presence, the impersonal Christ, Truth.

 

The Christ Casts Out Chance

Often, we appear, through chance, environment, heredity, education, to be immersed in the aimless wanderings of materiality. We can gain our freedom. We can prove God's divine purpose in our lives. We can do this through prayer, through acknowledging the Christ with us, through opening the eyes of our understanding to the light of God's law. Then we shall discover that infinite Mind is forever developing our true spirituality, our immortal nature, the permanent continuity of our real identity as spiritual children of the one God. The real man isn't just a happenstance. He's forever the product, the outpouring, the consequence of God's conscious knowing. Therefore chance has no capacity to make us live mediocre and purposeless lives.

It makes no difference to what degree of materiality we may be in bondage. Right where we are the fullness of the Christ, Truth, is unfolding the perfection of our individuality, unfolding God's purpose for us. All we need to do is to acknowledge our true selfhood, formed of spiritual substance instead of matter, by Truth instead of by misleading theories, and by divine Principle instead of by random chance. We need to understand that God, who is both divine Love and divine Principle, is loving and unerring in the wisdom with which He governs us. We need to acknowledge these truths and stay with them in unceasing prayer until acknowledgment becomes total conviction and conviction becomes enlightened spiritual understanding. Then we begin to prove the light of the Christ, Truth, God's law shining in us, transforming every phase of our human experience.

When chance or luck presents itself with some claim of discord or limitation, we must dispute it with the law of God. We must reject its claim as an unlawful intrusion. We can insist that it has no authority from God, and therefore it can have no hold upon us. We can insist that the law of God's perfection and goodness is the only presence and power governing us. We can insist that man is the intelligent consequence of God's perfect knowing. We are equipped to do this by divine intelligence. Therefore we can insist that we are too intelligent to abandon our understanding of God's government for faith in chance. This acknowledging the true and rejecting the false is what we understand to be prayer. It is a prayer that invokes divine law. It is prayer that is scientific and practical.

Divine inspiration, gained through prayer, causes us to drop limited conclusions about ourselves and others. It requires our acceptance of the divine facts of God's goodness as the only facts of our being. This understanding of God's invariable power and goodness governing our lives destroys the limitations of chance, evil which would surround us. This enlightened knowing is the Christ, God's presence ever with men. It's always active in human consciousness. When we respond to the Christ, it outlaws chance from our lives.

 

Business Is Not a Matter of Chance

A friend of mine found how God's law can overcome chance elements in business activities. He had been working on an important assignment for a large corporation in a southern city. Suddenly, without any forewarning, he was summarily transferred to another large city in the north within forty-eight hours. At his new location the man in charge was known to be a very difficult person with whom to deal. Momentarily, my friend was stunned. He could see no valid reason for the transfer, nor could he see any benefit to the corporation or to himself.

But being a student of Christian Science he began to reason in prayer something like this: "I know that God governs every moment of my career, and I know that the only activity here is the activity of divine Mind. So there must be some good in this development." Then he set out to find God's blessing, the light of God's law. He specifically denied the claim that in a large bureaucratic organization there could be any chance decision affecting him for good or for evil.

The words of one of the hymns in the Christian Science Hymnal came to him (No. 148):

 

"In heavenly Love abiding,

No change my heart shall fear;

And safe is such confiding,

For nothing changes here.

The storm may roar without me,

My heart may low be laid:

But God is round about me,

And can I be dismayed?"

 

He thought of Jesus' trial by Pilate, and of the Master's statement to Pilate, "Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above" (John 19:11). He knew that the only power to which he could bear witness in this experience was the power of God.

In thinking about the difficult individual with whom he would be working, he recognized that the power of divine Love went before him. He insisted that Mind would govern his new boss as well as himself. When he made his trip to the northern city, he literally went with Love each step of the way. The individual in charge of his activity on greeting him said, "Young man, I never expected to see you in this office, and, frankly, I don't know what to do with you."

Our friend continued to stand with the government of divine Principle, instead of change or speculation. He insisted that God knew what to do with him, and he found a very worthwhile purposeful business activity unfolding for him. His relationship with his boss improved from month to month. He continued on this particular assignment for several fruitful years.

In this experience we see demonstrated the divine fact of God's eternal government holding man in the unerring harmony, the changeless activity, of divine law. We see that this changeless activity of divine law, forever unfolding progress, can be demonstrated on the human scene.

God's law knows no chance, no dislocation, no interruptions of eternal harmony. As this law is proved in our human experience, it gives us dominion in face of any unwarranted or unexpected change and shows that God's divine purpose for men is happiness and unfolding achievement.

In his business adversity our friend prayed. He lifted his thought from the dismal shadows of material reasoning to the light of spiritual understanding, God's law. He found evidence of God's presence, of the Christ, Truth, supporting his trusting heart. He found his capacities strengthened so that he might go forward rejoicing. God's law works in just this way. It is so perfect and so mighty that it knows only spiritual and divine perfection. It nonetheless works in human consciousness, showing the divine presence. As we insistently and persistently acknowledge this presence and reject any other presence, it lifts our understanding out of material sense into spiritual knowing. The consequence of this spiritual activity always appears as reformation of character, as the solving of business problems, as the restoration of health. It is the divine mandate of God being made apparent to human apprehension. It is the teaching of Christ Jesus, made practical in today's world. It is scientific Christianity or Christian Science.

 

God's Law of Good Governs

No matter how difficult our lot in life may seem, the light of God's law, governing and directing man, can never be extinguished. There's always the divine image in each human heart waiting to unfold and develop in true brilliance. And it only requires scientific prayer, the intelligent arraying of our thought and action to the best of our ability, on the side of God, to prove this spiritual fact is paramount in our lives. We need only to take our position with God, acknowledging the power of divine intelligence as the only intelligence governing man. Then we shall find that God forms our experience anew, and leads us out of the uncertainties of chance, better or worse, into the certainty of His law, the spiritual law of unfailing good.

Fully in accord with the Bible and with the ministry of Christ Jesus, Christian Science teaches that there are spiritual life-laws, eternally good, forever governing every phase of our experience. These life-laws are laws of God, edicts of omnipotent Truth, irresistible demands of divine Love, ceaseless claims of omnipotent good. In the face of any misfortune, we can stand firm with the power and the laws of God governing, and they will deliver us, just as they did Joseph. When dangers confront us, we can turn to the example of Jesus, who triumphed gloriously over threatened misfortunes of every kind. If we are confronted by continuing adversity, we can remember the childlike trust and persistent faith of Mrs. Eddy, the brave New England woman who discovered and founded Christian Science. We can understand and insist that God's government is good and forever present.

God does not assign us a "lot" of mixed ill fortune and good fortune, ill health and good health, poverty and plenty. There is no chance allotment of evil and of good in God's kingdom. Fortune and fate don't find a place in the realm of Spirit. No chance governs any one of us. Neither ill fortune nor good fortune can rule our being. In reality, the ever-present energy of God's divine power governs men, every one of us in perfect harmony, in perfect wholeness now. God's divine mandate of unfolding good alone directs our path. His law of purposeful living encircles and cares for us all.

 

1965 by Norman B. Holmes

All rights reserved

 

[Published in The Maple Shade (New Jersey) Progress, Nov. 17, 1966.]

 

 

HOME PAGE INDEX OF LECTURES