Self the Barrier
Selfishness is the influence which blocks our return to God Consciousness.
We must begin to build up within ourselves that mind which was in the Christ, if we would know God. The choice is ours. He has set before us this day good and evil. He is "not willing that any should perish," but that all should know the truth; "and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
Is God not the God of the heaven, the universe? Should He not be God of the nation, the state, the home? What moves us to find fault with our neighbor, to cause inharmonies in home, in the state, in the nation? What are we doing in our daily conversations and actions to express our recognition of the One Spirit? Are we letting selfishness block the way, or are we being led by the Spirit of Truth?
The Spirit of the Christ cannot abide in a selfish heart. We drive Christ from our homes, from our churches, from our state- yes, from our own consciousness when we seek self-glory.
It was the cause of the first turning away from God. It was the first sin.
"It was Christmas Eve. The day's work was done. I was tired, so I lay down for a moment to reflect. I hadn't had much money to spend for the things that generally go to make Christmas Day happy. I began to look back on the day's work. In service I had done my best to make others happy. I had tried to be unselfish."
"When I thought of myself again, I realized that my body was entirely rested, although I had been lying down only a few moments. Is it possible, I thought, that true rest comes from the realization of a selfless life? If so, I had made the demonstration; no great demonstration, to be sure, but one to me, that was the natural result of being selfless for one day."
"During the first part of a spiritual discourse, which was a wonderful explanation of conditions of the world, I was following closely the questions that were being asked. Then, it seemed that I was up somewhere, high (unaware of being a person-just a 'consciousness'). I was looking down on a most beautiful, broad river, composed of flowing bubbles. It looked so smooth and almost musical-as the bubbles rolled on, around and over each other. I realized that the bubbles were PEOPLE! They, the bubbles, finally reached a place where they burst, and all seemed to be one. I thought It is the River of Life!' We, too, in the end will merge into the Whole; for we are one."
We are constantly meeting that which we have measured unto others, as well as unto ourselves. The fruits we sow we must reap. If we disobey the laws pertaining to cleanliness, or the natural laws of nature, do we not meet the result in ourselves? Just so, it is with our mental and spiritual environment or association. To whom do we accredit these influences that are so much a part of our mental abilities and faculties if not to self's choice?
Let us know in whom we believe, and who is the author of our desires. Are our desires creative or destructive? "Father, let Thy desires be my desires. Let my desires, God, be Thy desires, in spirit and in truth," (262-60) should be our prayer. Thus we find grace, mercy, peace, and harmony becoming more and more a part of our experience. We love others, not merely because they love us, but because it brings harmony and hope into our own experience as we recognize God in our neighbor.
Our religion, our love for our fellow human beings, our love for our Creator should be a living experience, not just form. Truth, as mercy and grace, GROWS through use. As we manifest the fruits of the spirit in our dealings with our fellow humans, we fulfill that purpose for which we are called. We show forth the love we hold for our Maker by the manner in which we deal with our neighbor. God's love has manifested again and again in the earth showing us that by love, not hate and force, a soul may be brought to an awareness of its spiritual reality.
If we would be miserable, then let us think only of self. If we would know happiness, then be a friend to someone. If we would know the love of God, then show love to those who seek, to those who condemn. Be joyous in the Lord, knowing that He is ever present when we seek His face. He is ever with us when we desire to be an emissary that others may know what it means to walk and talk with Him.
When we efface self and seek only to be led by His Spirit, then and only then may we hope to do our part in the scheme of redemption. Let us analyze our desires, our purposes, put away from our mind, our heart, our experience, those things that would make us afraid, and know that the true spirit of creative influence is WITHIN.
That which has a beginning must have an ending. Hence rebellion, selfishness, and hate, must be wiped away, and with them must go sorrow, tears and sadness. ONLY GOOD is everlasting. It is the Spirit of God that moved over the face of the earth, and gives this Spirit the charge concerning His own. Are we His own?
He has committed to us the keeping of His sheep, the tending of His lambs, until He comes and makes an accounting with each of us.
Where, О Where, will we be? (See 262-114.)