The Expansive Action of God

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Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Like the first line in the Lord’s Prayer, this second line also expresses three ideas that are important to a prayerfully receptive state. It is generally believed that this prayer is petitionary, that it makes requests of God. However, many modern biblical scholars tell us we should think of this prayer as affirmative in nature, that it should be spoken in a manner similar to this: Thy kingdom is here, thy will is being done on earth as it is in heaven.

This attitude aligns our thinking with the truth that the fullness of God (kingdom of God) is here and the will of God (absolute good) is unfolding right now. In relation to a challenge you may be undergoing, you are to think of God’s help as already present and that only absolute good is unfolding through your life, that what is already true at the unseen level (heaven) is also manifesting at the level of the visible (earth).

This attitude allows you to take your focus off the limitations of the apparent problem and turn it to the limitless possibilities of Spirit. Spirit is unformed intelligent energy and it is always looking for ways to express through specific channels. A seed you hold in your hand is endowed with this life, but it must be planted in a growing environment to begin its transformative process. Then this unseen life and intelligence, the kingdom of God, becomes evident. The expansive will of the Creative Life Force manifests.

When you pray, always remember that you are not attempting to get God to act; you are agreeing to open yourself to the action of God.

 

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Asking God for Help

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Or what man of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:9

This gem of truth could be stated like this: God doesn’t give us things we do not ask for. So why is it that we sometimes pray for one thing and get its apparent opposite? Is God playing games, testing us like Job to see how we hold up under pressure? Or, is there something to the observation of James who suggests that prayers are not answered because the one praying is praying amiss?

A standard guitar has six strings. When all six strings are in tune, a strummed chord will produce a pleasant sound. If even one string is out of tune, you can hold the right chord and strum correctly, but the sound will be unpleasant. The sound you get is based on a predictable set of principles that will always give you the same result when you comply with the governing rules.

If we assume that Jesus is articulating a spiritual principle, then we also have to assume that our mixed results stem from our mixed asking. If you pray for a solution then rack your brain trying to come up with the answer, you have a string out of tune. If you pray for a solution expecting it to unfold in perfect order, all your strings are tuned and you synchronize yourself with the creative manifestation process.

The whole state of mind from which you ask, like the six strings of a guitar, produces a vibration that is either in tune or out of tune with the manifestation process. If you pray from a consciousness of doubt and fear, you will tend to create material conditions that support your doubts and fears. This is why Jesus said we must believe in our heart when we pray.

God does not give us things we do not ask for. Tune your whole being to the solution you seek, and it will come forth.

Spiritual Adaptation

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It is common to associate our ongoing spiritual interest with a quest, a journey, or an evolutionary process of development. We think of ourselves as being at one place in understanding and we’re slowly moving to another. This perspective is strengthened by observing our typical method of learning. Acquiring knowledge on any subject involves the acquisition of information we do not currently have. The more information we gather, the more informed we obviously become.

When we think of someone we consider a spiritual giant, Jesus, for example, we assume he applied the same information-gathering process to his own spiritual development. The people of his day were certainly baffled. “How did this man get such learning without having been taught?” (John 7:15). Today, still applying the evolutionary model, we speculate that during the so-called missing years – that 18-year gap between ages of 12 and 30 – he may have retired to the desert to study with the Essenes, or traveled to India to study with Hindu mystics. Some speculate that he was a very old soul. Still others hold that he was sent by God, that his great wisdom is explained by his unique spiritual pedigree.

Let’s look at this with fresh eyes. All of creation is constantly tuning itself to its present environment. Any living form that does not do this successfully goes extinct. What we are calling a progression – moving from a lesser to a greater, more complex state – is really a perpetual adaptation to the present. This is a very different process that suggests all the pertinent forces of this universe are active and fully engaged now.

This is how we must think of the spiritual dimension and our relationship to it. We, like all of nature, are designed to interface with this omnipresent reality we call God. We won’t eventually evolve to this capacity, we have it now. To think something so essential to our spiritual well-being is somehow withheld, or that we have to earn it through lifetimes of searching is spiritually illogical. Who would withhold information critical to the well-being of their own children? If we as parents would not do this, why would we think it’s happening to us?

Man has the greatest capacity for creative expression. That natural hurdles would be thrown in front of us to hinder us is ludicrous. We are blinded by our own ignorance.

 

Your Intuitive Connection

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“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).

Today is Mother’s Day. As we acknowledge with appreciation the role our mothers played in bringing us into this world, we also do well to turn our thoughts to the spiritual aspects of this celebration. Unfortunately, not everyone has had a good relationship with their mother, but we all have a mothering, or intuitive connection with God. This connection is experienced at the feminine, or feeling level rather than the masculine or intellectual level. Of course, we are not referring to gender here, but functions of our consciousness. So much of our spiritual quest is focused on developing the intellect, but it is our intuitive connection that truly brings us into the awareness of God as our source.

Jesus’ imagery of the vine and branch is very helpful here. Think of your soul as a branch growing out of the vine of God. When a branch is severed from the vine, it withers and dies. Connected, it thrives and bears fruit. We cannot literally sever ourselves from God, but we can become so distracted with negative appearances that all our attention is turned away from our spiritual source. We may feel we are withering, spiritually empty, as if God is an abstraction and of little practical value to our situation. This is the intellect operating without the benefit of our intuitive connection.

While many think of intuitive communication as a hunch or a feeling to turn right rather than left, we need to be aware that the universal impartation of God is simply the absolute peace of knowing all is well. The moment we are touched by this knowing, the specifics of what we should do flow a lot easier. It is as if we know the hand of God has led us to this place and the hand of God will continue to lead us. We are consciously connected to the vine, to the understanding that our way is now being cleared even if we do not see clearly how things will work out. We are empowered with the intuitive knowledge that things are falling into place as they should.

Abide consciously in the vine. Find that place in yourself where you know you are the branch and you are now bearing the desired fruit of success in your life.

The Simple Prayer

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One of my favorite Old Testament stories involves that period when Moses was leading Israel out of Egyptian bondage. The Egyptians, who had first agreed to let Israel go had a change of heart and decided instead to slaughter them all. Israel was caught between the Red Sea and the thundering army of Egypt. Panic set in and the people cried out to Moses. His response is what I will call the simple prayer, paraphrased here:

Fear not, stand firm and lift up your eyes to see the salvation that the Lord will work for you today.

You can see this statement involves three commands that can be stated in this way: 1) Release your fear, 2) stand firm in your conviction that greater good is now unfolding through this situation and 3) see the highest resolution to your situation unfolding now.

Releasing fear is probably the most challenging aspect of this prayer. Most of us are in such a habit of reacting in fear that we don’t realize there is another, more productive option. Fear is debilitating, as it shuts down our ability to do much more than react to immediate conditions which, in all likelihood, do not tell the whole story. A concerted effort to release fear opens us to new possibilities.

To stand firm is a conscious effort to know that the one presence and power of God is working through you now to establish a better situation. Do you believe this is possible? Affirm that it is and expect the way to open as you take each step forward.

Can you see the salvation you desire? Can you begin to feel the freedom you would know if your issue were resolved? This is what the third step reminds you to do. How would you feel if your Red Sea opened and the problems you now face were no more?

Take each part of this simple prayer to heart. Apply it to your situation now and see for yourself how things work together for your highest good.

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The Alpha and Omega of Manifestation

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Part 1 of 6

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End (Revelation 22:13).

Thomas Troward, whose work we’ll be touching on over the next few weeks, considered the Alpha as the thought and the Omega as the expression of that thought in a specific form. He considers this the beginning and end of the manifestation process as it pertains to our individual desires. Below are five steps we can engage to bring forth better conditions. I include them all here, but we will explore the principles involved over the next five weeks.

Step 1: I form a clear picture of my desire with the understanding that, by so doing, I impress this desire upon the living energy that is God.

Step 2: I understand that I am working with spiritual law. With calm expectation of a corresponding result, I know that all necessary conditions to fulfill my desire are present and revealing themselves in proper order.

Step 3: I enter my daily routine with the calm assurance that my desired conditions are either present already or will soon present themselves. If I do not see evidence at once, I know that the spiritual prototype is already in existence.

Step 4: I wait until some circumstance pointing in the desired direction begins to show itself. It may be small but it is the type and not the magnitude of the circumstance that is important. This is the beginning of significant changes.

Step 5: I do calmly, without excitement, whatever the circumstance seems to require. This action leads to the further unfolding of other circumstances in the same direction. By addressing each one as it appears, I move step by step toward the accomplishment of my desire.

 

 

 

 

 

The Affirmative Prayer

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J Douglas Bottorff

Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil” (Matthew 5:37).

Generally speaking, there are two kinds of prayer: petitionary and affirmative. The petitionary prayer assumes we are separate from God and that it is necessary to petition God with our request for help. This is the most common type of prayer. Affirmative prayer assumes our oneness with God. Its purpose is to realign our mental and emotional energies with the ever-expansive nature of God always at work in our lives.

Think of yourself as immersed in the ever-expanding presence of God. Think of that health, prosperity or relationship issue you are praying about as a kind of blockage, an interruption to this ever-expanding presence. Affirmative prayer assumes your desire for freedom is in alignment with the expansive will of God. You say ‘no’ to the appearance of blockage and ‘yes’ to the truth that greater good is unfolding through you now.

This process of saying ‘yes’ and ‘no’ is not directed to the actual condition, but to our thought and emotional energies concerning the appearance. You can think of this as a kind of attention switch. When you worry, your attention switch is turned on to an unfavorable outcome. You are saying ‘yes’ to something you do not want. Turn this switch to ‘no.’ Let go of all fear and doubt concerning the appearance. Turn on the switch that says ‘yes’ to the truth that God’s greater good is now unfolding in your life. Pour your thought and emotional energies into the type of positive outcome you desire – this or something better.

Saying ‘no’ to a negative appearance does not mean we ignore it. If our sink is plugged, we might need to grab a plunger. We’re saying ‘no’ to the negative thought and emotion that we’re giving the appearance, and ‘yes’ to the constructive thought and emotion that will influence a desirable outcome.

We say ‘no’ (turn the switch off) to, Why is this happening to me? or, God, please give me this or that answer. We say ‘yes’ (turn the switch on) to something like, Greater good is now unfolding through this situation. Our thought and emotional energies are in affirmative alignment with the ever-expanding, greater good of God unfolding though our lives now.