Most often, the beginning and the ending tell you a lot about the scope and intent of everything in between. This is true for literature, art, and music, it is true for projects, endeavors, your days. The first words - or actions - set the tone whereas the last words - or actions - shape the memory and outline the legacy and impact.
When studying in depth the gospel of John, I took note of the first and the last words, Christ Jesus is speaking. I was being aware of the opening lines as the first moments in his public ministry, his appearance on the scene of the human condition and his last words.
The very first words we hear from Jesus are "Come and see". (John 1: 39). It is a reply to two men how have heard from John the Baptist that Jesus is the Messiah, the promised Savior of the world. And what a Savior! I find it humbling that the first words are a response, not the initiative. Jesus, I am reading in these last words, was foremost an outstanding listener, and the beginning of this gospel hints at this important quality. It is meeting a need - and even the need to understand where he is staying - right from the outset.
The entire gospel of John is unlike the other - its focus is a look into the soul and heart of the Christ. Compared to the other gospels, only a few healings are reported, all in all seven reports of what the Bible calls miracles - including turning water into wine - but they are reported in so much detail, explanation and depth that one learns so much about the Christ, God's communication of power and love with humanity. The gospel of John gives for each opposing narrative to the true status of man as God's dignified and valued man an example, in such a way, that we find ourselves in these reports and move forward. I wonder whether "come and see" echoes Jesus' first hand knowledge of the Psalms telling us to "Come and see the works of God." (Psalms 66: 5)
What a simple invitation to simply get moving and see for ourselves, too. "Come and see" has morphed into something like a daily reminder to not stay where I seem to be at a certain point but to move and see for myself, that is to experience for myself, where the Christ is - this power of God active in our life and experience, ready to stand by us, with us, for us.
When you read through the gospel of John and finally reach the final chapter to catch Jesus' last words, you will find them equally to the point. They are a call, an assignment, and an invitation at the same time. The words are "follow thou me." (John 21: 22) I am hearing the echo of the famous 23rd Psalm here: "Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever." (Psalm 23: 6) We follow the lead of goodness, fairness, peace and we are being followed by goodness and mercy every day. "Follow thou me."
Someone said that Jesus spent his entire life making people happy. We all can certainly know how special a day of "come and see" feels and plays out in our experience. A day of expressing Christlike qualities, of "coming and seeing" for ourselves and caring deeply about humanity's needs, so much so, that our own needs pale in comparison and are being met abundantly by divine Love itself. Love applauds unselfishness without exception. So between "come and see" and "follow thou me" is enough space for a whole life to unfold, and this life is here today - with a safe, beautiful frame to embrace infinite good.
Here is a report about the practical application of the healing laws this blog post is speaking about.
We think we can get away with anything. And sometimes in the short run we actually can - jumping on a bus without a ticket, ignoring a stop sign late at night, telling a lie, being rude without a consequence for us. We pretend to know or understand, when in fact we don't. Or to be more patient or forgiving than we are. That is the nature of the human condition.
While praying for someone in need it came to me that there is something that can get away with anything. That is allowed to do anything it pleases and move forward at any speed that is right. That is truly powerful and holds all the answers to all the questions we might have in her hands. And that is Truth.
"Truth can get away with anything" - the thought expanded and the accompanying feeling of integrity and courage. Truth can do what it pleases, outline, guide, or rule in any way it finds fitting. Truth is all power and the only point of true rest, peace, and reality there is or can every be.
Truth is all power, so in our human experience, when in doubt, I thought, look for the real thing and go with the real thing. Opt for truthfulness, for an expression of what is right under the given circumstances. Endeavor to get to know Truth, God. See the link between Truth, God, and integrity, moral courage, purity, and never be afraid to speak the truth to power. With Truth you cannot negotiate or try to achieve a compromise. Truth is. With Truth you can only cooperate and grow into living it and thriving by it. (Similar to gravity, really). Mary Baker Eddy asks in an article these questions: "Can eternity end? Can Life die? Can Truth be uncertain?" (Pulpit and Press, p. 3)
A wonderful consistency of living is running through anyone honoring Truth. Truth is so gentle and always on our side. Truth is continuous. The case I prayed for, was healed and I learned an important lesson.
Let the wit and the empowerment by this idea - "Truth can get away with anything" - expand in your heart and enable you to look at the way you live your days, how you handle relationships and what priorities you have. No guilt will haunt your steps, no regrets or sadness will follow you around as you remember that quite naturally only Truth can get away with anything. Truth was always true and error never was. This is pure law in God's world. There is a lot to discover, a lot to let go and a lot to redeem, purify, and uplift. Truly. "Truth can get away with anything." Everything else simply can't.
Who is writing?
In my work as Christian Science practitioner and writer I draw on listening to God and listening to people.
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