Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

When What You Want Is What You Get ; Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

When What You Want Is What You Get ; Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Article excerpt

I was standing near the dryers in a London laundromat. A man came up to me and asked if I would change a pound coin for five 20- pence pieces. I only had two 50-pence coins on me, so I couldn't help him. Soon afterward a woman asked if I could change a pound coin for two 50-pence pieces, and I gladly gave her the coins she needed. My response had nothing to do with having goodwill toward one person and not toward the other. I couldn't help the man because I didn't have what he wanted. I was able to help the woman because she asked for what I had.

To me, that's analogous to God's response to prayers. It is always a loving response. God freely grants all that is within God's power to give. The loving Father and Mother of creation doesn't withhold a single good thing from anyone, ever. On the other hand, God doesn't have a material storehouse from which to supply money, romantic relationships, a snazzy car, or a beautiful house.

The good that the divine Parent has to give is spiritual, because God is Spirit. For instance, God gives insights and intuitions that enhance a person's ability to be wiser, more loving, less afraid, more useful. And acting on the leadings of the divine Spirit doesn't leave a person destitute of practical good. Rather, happy and fulfilling experiences naturally result when things are seen from a more spiritual viewpoint. And when impulses to be and to do good are followed.

I spent a long time longing, hoping, praying, to find a marriage partner. At the same time I was increasingly aware that I needed a more solid grasp of spiritual ideals that would enable me to be of better service to others. As I thought about how to achieve this, I felt impelled to devote a lot of time to spiritual study and prayer. This gave me many precious insights, including a new understanding of how unconditional my happiness is as part of God's creation.

Following this, a fond friendship blossomed into a romance that soon led to marriage. …

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