Church Within Sunday Services
for February 1997
2-2-97 Sunday Service of Church Within #19
What Is Soul?
Soul is that which survives this mortal life. Soul is the result of choosing to Love, to discover Truth, to recognize Beauty, to embrace and emulate Goodness. Soul is the repercussion of our attempt to be Perfect "even as Our Father in Heaven is Perfect". Soul is the arena from which comes ALL Creativity. Soul is the Beautiful part of ourselves. Soul is our Spiritual Bank Account. Soul is our Willing Partnership with our Creator. Soul is where we may recognize and fraternize with God. Soul is where Heroism is born. Soul is where Love is allowed to flow through to another. Soul is where the desire to Serve unselfishly begins to grow. Soul is our Personalities' Ticket to Eternity.
We Look into the eyes of another, into their "heart", and we see their Soul. We crave and seek Love and acceptance... it is the true yearning of our Soul. Only in our Soul and the Souls of others may we truly discover the reality our Divine Parent. Only by searching for and discovering the Beauty and Goodness in others AND within ourselves, may we grow in our own understanding and experience of the Fullness of Gods' Infinite Personality and Love. Only from within our Soul may we recognize ourself as Gods' Child. Only from within our Soul may we recognize others to be also Gods' Children, hence our own true Brothers and Sisters.
ALL have the capacity, the potential and the inner desire to be Loved, to be True, Beautiful and Good. Show YOUR Soul to others that they in turn may have an opportunity to share theirs with YOU. Give of your Soul to others that you may share of the Unique Gifts which YOU have been given, for in this way may you also give a gift in return to the Divine Gift Giver.
Share freely the Light by which you see... and one day, darkness will be but a fleeting memory of the emptiness which has been filled.
Dearest Loving and Divine Parent of ALL,
Be patient with our youth and immaturity, and help us also to be patient with ourselves and others. Help us to realize that growth cannot be forced, it must be earned and willingly embraced. Help our Souls to understand that maturity is not the result of longevity but of our own growth and development. Show us how to love ourselves and others as You do. Give us Your Strength when all we feel is weakness... Your Assurance when all we feel is doubt... Your Understanding when all we see is confusion... Your Love when all we feel is hatred and loneliness. Let us see clearly in Your Divine Light Dear God, and moment by moment be more and more like YOU.
Show us how to do and be Your Will.
2-9-97 Sunday Service of Church Within #20
Once upon a time there were three brothers. In age, three years separated the first and second brother and seven years the second and third.
William Jr., the eldest, was very intelligent but was not endowed with an equally high level of common sense or empathy. His mind was very quick with facts and figures, and he easily got top grades in school, but was unthinking when it came to dealing with others. This is not to say that Bill was knowingly unkind for he was not, but quite often he would say things without thinking and as a result would hurt the feelings of his contemporaries and especially his younger brother, Jim. Bill had a few close acquaintances, but no one he could really call a best friend.
James, the second born, had to struggle continuously just to keep up with his school work. He put all of his effort into it, but somehow, his grades were always just below average. Almost everyone loved Jim. He was so sincere and caring about the feelings of everyone else, that he attracted many friends who would do anything for him. There were a few who would take advantage of his somewhat below average intelligence, but his friends quickly came to his defense. He could never understand why his elder brother was always so irritated with him or why the two of them bickered and fought so much. Jim kept his distance from Bill as much as possible, but sharing a room with him didn't afford much peace at home.
Joshua was the youngest of the three. He was a very bright child, but was not as quick at retaining information as was Bill. He had a heart of gold, but didn't share it as openly as did his brother Jim. It was hard for Josh to pay close attention to the school subjects which he deemed "useless" but he always seemed to learn enough about them to squeak by a passing grade. Those subjects which he really enjoyed, he excelled in. He loved music and art and was always satisfied with his own results, but his lack of conformity seldom produced better than average grades in the two. Josh had a few exceptionally close friends which he did everything with, one in particular whom he had met at a very early age, but he was not so universally accepted as was his brother Jim. He had a strong sense of his own individuality and detested the conformity required to be "One of the Crowd". Josh was fairly well liked my most and was dearly loved by both of his elder brothers. If not for his frequent intervention and humorous demeanor, his two brothers would have fought with each other far more often than they did.
The boys' parents loved them each uncompromisingly for their uniqueness and allowed them to each express themselves in their own special way. It pained them to see their two older boys at such odds with each other, but for the most part they wisely let them work out their own difficulties with each other. Only when the confrontations came to blows and they feared for the safety of either of them did they ever physically intervene, and then only to separate them until tempers could cool down.
The family did as much together as their individual schedules would allow... Sundays they always spent together doing things and going places and there were seldom any conflicts when all were involved in mutual sharing.
As the years passed, Bill and Jim became more widely separated in their love for each other and seldom communicated with each other except when absolutely necessary. Josh spent time with each of them individually because he loved and respected them both, but not often did the three of them do things together anymore. Josh sorely missed the times when the three of them did things as a team. He always tried to coordinate things that the three of them could do together, but either Bill or Jim would find an excuse to cancel these well intended attempts at unity.
When Joshua reached the age of 20, their parents died in an auto accident. This brought the three brothers together again for the first time in 10 years outside of family holiday gatherings. William Jr. and James were both married now with two children each. Joshua was as yet unmarried but was "on a mission" to find the "right" lady. Financially, none of the three young men had "made it" yet as had their father. At the reading of the will it was learned that each of them was to be made an equal partner in their father's flourishing business, IF all three of them agreed to take an active and equal part in the running of the business. If NOT, the business would be closed down and all assets were to be donated to their father's favorite charity. It was a very successful enterprise and as none of the three were very content with the present work they were doing, and couldn't bear the thought of their dad's lifelong venture just closing down without a visible trace, they decided to try to work together for the common benefit. Josh was ecstatic at the possibility that the three of them would be working together... Bill and Jim were somewhat less than so.
Bill being the eldest of the three, quickly decided to take charge, much to the dismay of Jim... and even Josh, although he wasn't particularly sure as to why it "felt" wrong. Bill was obviously the intellectual superior of the three, but his imagination and his leadership skills were severely lacking. Jim was a natural "People Person" and could always in a loving way get the best out of others, but he didn't have the cognitive skills nor the drive to be in charge. Besides, he just didn't WANT that job, he just didn't want Bill to have it. Josh just kept quiet, knowing inside that his age was a major stumbling block to HIS consideration for the position. He was quiet, that is, until Jim and Bill got into a heated argument about each others deficiencies. Then Josh did what he did best. He diffused the situation by putting his arms around his brothers and gently reminding them each of their positive and beneficial qualities. Bill and Jim finally agreed with Josh regarding the unique qualities of the rival brother. Slightly embarrassed by their vehemence, Bill and Jim looked into each other's eyes and suddenly, simultaneously, realized that their "baby brother" had just proven his maturity. The one thing they both had in common was their love for their little brother, and in that moment they were both quite proud of him. Again Jim and Bill looked at each other, and for the first time with mutual respect. They Nodded in recognition and then together, as one, they turned toward Josh. "You are in charge!" they both said to Joshua.
Josh felt very small all of a sudden. "I c-can't do it. I'm too young for the job!" he stammered. His brothers just grinned. "You CAN do it, and you WILL... with the two of US at your side." The three brothers hugged... and cried... in Joy. With the Unique talents that they each possessed, they WOULD make it.
And they DID make it! Indeed they even Improved on what their father had left for them... much to their Joyful surprise.
You have given us Much. To EACH of us You have given many unique qualities and experiences to share and to grow from. Help us to achieve a unity of purpose in the furtherance of Your Divine Will for our planet. Continue to remind us that it is Unity rather than uniformity which can accomplish the seemingly impossible... We seem to forget at times.
Strengthen our Souls to withstand the debilitation of egoistic despair. Grant us Your guidance that we may accomplish our own self discovery and mastery. Give us the sight to recognize You at our side, ever encouraging us to BE all that we CAN be.
We Love You dear God... help us to likewise Love each other as You do.
Father's Love... through me... to all of you,
2-16-97 Sunday Service of Church Within #21
Daily, take time in Stillness and Meditation with your Divine Parent...whether in thankful Worship, in petitioning Prayer, or in contemplative Conversation about goals and ideals. Make time for it each and every day. It matters not where you are, only that you are alone. It can be while laying in your bed, doing the dishes, cooking, driving in your car, working in your garden, taking a shower or bath, on a walk or jog, or even while sitting on the toilet if that is the only time you can get alone. Any time that you can make is the perfect time. During this time, turn off your internal dialogue with yourself... focus ONLY on your Creator, your Source. If you can only take 5 minutes a day, then take it. If you can take longer, then do so... YOU are the beneficiary.
So often we waste days, weeks, months, trying to: DO... DO... DO; GET... GET... GET; GO...GO...GO!!! We allow our minds to be filled with: "If only, "; "As soon as, "; "Just wait until, "; "Someday, "; "When I get, "; "If it wasn't for, " .............. "...then I'll be happy!" They are Ego struggles... every one of them. They are not bad in and of themselves... they help us survive in the Material world. But there is more to life... MUCH, much more. Not only should we do... we must BE. Not only should we get... we must RECIEVE. Not only should we go... we must ARRIVE.
The term "Human Being" can be looked at two ways. "Being" can be looked at as a noun: [being (bee-ing) n. 1. something that exists and has life.] OR... it can be looked at as a verb: [being (bee-ing) v. 1. living, occupying a position. 2. having a certain identity, quality, or condition. 3. equaling, becoming. 4. the supreme purpose or essence.] A Human Being (noun) is what we all are... we have no choice in the matter. A Human Being (verb) is the Soul Becoming, really Living, striving for the Supreme Purpose. Are we merely "a" being... or are we truly being? It is a good question to ask ourselves from time to time.
Being all that we can be is one of the few things, if not the only thing, that our Creator requires of us.
Dearest Father and Divine Parent of All,
Remind us to take time to be with You... to be still and to listen for Your guidance... to share with You our thoughts and feelings and emotions. Help us to BE Your Love, Your Light... a revelation of You that only our own unique personality CAN be. Show us YOUR way that we may become more and more like You. Give us the strength to resist our own selfish impulses. Help us to find the satisfaction that comes from finding You, rather than the emptiness that results from the constant quest for "things". Help us to realize that doing Your Will is a result of trying to BE Your Will.
We Love You God... Thanks for all that You give us!
Father's Love... through me... to all of you,
2-23-97 Sunday Service of Church Within #22
What is Love?
[Oxford American Dictionary]
love (luv) n. 1. warm liking or affection for a person, affectionate devotion. 2. sexual affection or passion, the relation between sweethearts. 3. God's benevolence toward mankind. 4. strong liking for a thing.
There... now we are fully cognizant of the meaning of the word love. That's all there is to it... isn't it? Somehow I don't feel satisfied with that definition, I don't know... the definition just doesn't seem to get the feel for it... there must be more to it than that.
What is Love?
Is Love ever Jealous? Nah... I don't think so. Is Love ever unkind? Hmmm... seems so sometimes, but... ya wouldn't think it should be, would ya? Well... maybe it's not. Can Love be Tough, or Unyielding, or Mean? Umm... We sure can be, but Love? I would have to say no. Can you hurt someone you Love? Well yeah, sure, that's pretty obvious... but by giving it or by holding it back? I would think the latter... probably can't hurt someone by GIVING Love. Is Love Blind? I've heard it said, I've said it myself... but then choosing not to notice something or not to be affected by it isn't really the same as being Blind, is it? Well... no... I guess not... not really. Is Love something we can Possess? Love itself? No. We can possess every new experience of it, Yes. We can't lose an experience of Love... we can forget that it's there or choose not to remember it, but we can't lose it.
What IS Love?
God is Love. Yeah, we know that... but what does it mean? How do we recognize True, Beautiful and Good Love... where do we find it? We receive Love, we give Love... What's Love all about anyways?
Love is the Exclusive Gift of God.
Love is the only thing that we can give TO God.
Love is the desire to do good to, and for, another.
Love is wanting the best for another.
Love is what we have for ourselves when we recognize who we truly are...
the way God does.
Love is experienced only by our Soul and our Spirit.
Love is Shared only by our Soul and our Spirit.
Love is a Parent's gift to their child.
Love is a Child's gift to their parent.
Love is given freely without being needy for it's return.
Love is being accepting of the gift of love from another.
Love is unselfish.
Love is Fluid... it must be allowed to flow or it becomes stagnant.
Love is the Universal Solvent... it cannot be contained.
Love is recognizing God within another.
Love is recognizing God within ourself.
What is LOVE?
Dearest Father/Mother, Source of All,
Forever continue to update our definition and understanding of Love... You are truly the Only One who knows it in it's Fullness. Help us to know that when we Love another, that it is truly You that we are Loving within that other. Show us the way to Love without thought for it's return... as do You. Grant us the ability to give and receive Love unselfishly and without conditions. Help us to BE the expression of Your Love to one another. Let us learn to not chastise ourselves for our incompleteness, our immaturity... Dearest Source. Help us to understand that we are, and always will be, growing continuously... moment by moment for all eternity, and that apparent failures are but lessons for learning along the way. With You as our Only Goal, we can never truly fail.
We are Your Children and we would be like you in every way.
Father's Love... through me... to all of you,
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