How we need forgiveness --- how we need love. Every day. This true love which is willing to submit our own and other's assessment to divine Love who is always on everyone's side, who empowers good motives, enables progress and development, unites ideas and shed its loving light not only on the peaks of our thought, but also right into its dark corners which we might assume are impossible to reach. Divine Love is the secret of the kingdom of heaven and the secret and reason for existing. We exist to express this Love. Divine Love, infinite good, is our life, now and tomorrow and always. Divine Love only knows itself and includes nothing unlike itself, nothing renitent, fractious or rebellious to Love's rule of equality, justice and mercy. These are God's truth, and learning more about them, discovering them and working with them every day has felt and is feeling for some people like waking up - feeling truly alive, sometimes for the first time in their experience.
Forgiveness is one glorious effect of this divine Love. It is pointing to Love, it is being empowered by Love, it is expressing Love. Forgiveness is not a contract with another individual, it is a one-sided, unilateral gift. It is something you make up between divine Love and you. Forgiveness is an attitude towards our fellow sister and brother, approving of the rule of divine Love in our hearts and minds and accepting that Love knows more about Life than we do.
Forgiveness, I read recently, is also this:
Giving up the hope that the past could have been any different.
Can we give up this hope and let Love shine brightly in this present moment, enabling us to rise and take the next step? Is it responsible to let go of this hope, take a deep breath, and move on? Is it o.k. to simply be lifted up out of our own story, the self, we think is us? Is it the prudent and healthy thing to do?
This beautiful poem from a new Christian Science Hymnal gives the answers.
One by one, pure thoughts and holy / Lift us out of self and sin; / One by one, bright gleams of glory / Show the goal we all will win. / One by one, our trusts are strengthened, / As our lives to God we give; / One by one, our days are lengthened, / While in Love we move and live. /
Then within Love's ever-presence / We shall live amid its light, / Knowing well that holy brilliance / Which is called the Infinite. / Know the glories of God's kingdom, / Hear the music Spirit sings, / Be at one with that great Wisdom / From which all creation springs.
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In my work as Christian Science practitioner and writer I draw on listening to God and listening to people.
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