Church Within Sunday Services

for October 1998

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#106
10-4-98
#107
10-11-98
#108
10-18-98
#109
10-25-98

10-4-98 Sunday Service of Church Within #106
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Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel Joseph Megow

Welcome
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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to The Church that is Within.

There are certain things that just don't seem able to be improved upon...

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Quotes
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(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-117 Section-6)
        All true love is from God, and man receives the divine affection as he himself bestows this love upon his fellows. Love is dynamic. It can never be captured; it is alive, free, thrilling, and always moving. Man can never take the love of the Father and imprison it within his heart. The Father's love can become real to mortal man only by passing through that man's personality as he in turn bestows this love upon his fellows.

(from: the RSV Bible - John I 3:17-20)
But if any one has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth. By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-100 Section-4)
Jesus loved men so much because he placed such a high value upon them. You can best discover values in your associates by discovering their motivation. If some one irritates you, causes feelings of resentment, you should sympathetically seek to discern his viewpoint, his reasons for such objectionable conduct. If once you understand your neighbor, you will become tolerant, and this tolerance will grow into friendship and ripen into love.

(from: the RSV Bible - John I 2:6)
He who says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.

(from: the RSV Bible - Peter I 1:22)
Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-100 Section-4)
Love is infectious, and when human devotion is intelligent and wise, love is more catching than hate. But only genuine and unselfish love is truly contagious. If each mortal could only become a focus of dynamic affection, this benign virus of love would soon pervade the sentimental emotion-stream of humanity to such an extent that all civilization would be encompassed by love, and that would be the realization of the brotherhood of man.

(from: the KJV Bible - Timothy I 6:12)
Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

(from: the NASB Bible - John 13:34)
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

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The Sermon
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Those with ears to hear, let them hear.

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The Prayer
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Dear God,        
        Teach me how to Love... and also how to accept it. Make of me a humble fountain that Your love may quench any and all who thirst. For This I pray.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love, through me, to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-11-98 Sunday Service of Church Within #107
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Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel Joseph Megow

Welcome
********
Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to The Church that is Within.

The inspiration for today's sermon is from an e-response I made to a dear friend this week.

You know who you are. At least... you will. ;-) Thank you! You are a very Inspiring person.

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Quotes
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(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-103 Section-5)
        Human happiness is achieved only when the ego desire of the self and the altruistic urge of the higher self (divine spirit) are co-ordinated and reconciled by the unified will of the integrating and supervising personality. The mind of evolutionary man is ever confronted with the intricate problem of refereeing the contest between the natural expansion of emotional impulses and the moral growth of unselfish urges predicated on spiritual insight---genuine religious reflection.

(A Zen Parable)
        The Prime Minister of the Tang Dynasty was a national hero for his success as both a statesman and military leader. But despite his fame, power, and wealth, he considered himself a humble and devout Buddhist. Often he visited his favorite Zen master to study under him, and they seemed to get along very well. The fact that he was prime minister apparently had no effect on their relationship, which seemed to be simply one of a revered master and respectful student.

        One day, during his usual visit, the Prime Minister asked the master, "Your Reverence, what is egotism according to Buddhism?" The master's face turned red, and in a very condescending and insulting tone of voice, he shot back, "What kind of stupid question is that!?"
        This unexpected response so shocked the Prime Minister that he became sullen and angry. The Zen master then smiled and said, "THIS, Your Excellency, is egotism."

(from Katha Upanishads via: "St. George and the Dragon" by E. Hays)
"When all the ties that bind the Heart are Loosened, what remains then?" "Tat Twam Asi... You are That!"

(from the NASB Bible - Matthew 7:7-12)
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him! In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-147 Section-3)
"You are all God's children; you are the sons of the heavenly Father. The bonds of time may seem to afflict you, but the God of eternity loves you. And when the time of judgment shall come, fear not, you shall all find, not only justice, but an abundance of mercy."

(from the RSV Bible - Luke 12:32)
"Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

(from: "Touched by an Angel" - Tess)
"God Loves you and He has a plan for your life..."

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The Sermon
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        The first 18 years of my life were spent in an environment of individual encouragement and self empowerment. I was never given cause to feel unlovable. Then I moved from "home" out on my own... into "The World". The next 23 years were spent in and out of co-dependent and dysfunctional relationships. [I don't particularly care for those two terms, but they were all I could think of to describe the larger portion of my life.] There always seemed to be conditions placed on my lovability... ie: "If you do all of this and don't do any of that, then you can be lovable to me." I became rather entrenched in co-dependency, thinking that I could fix everything if only I loved them enough or loved them the "correct" way. In the process, I somehow learned to compromise my inner validation of God's Love, by seeking my personal validation from outside... from others. I thought that if only I could change myself, that I could make them love me as much as I loved them. When this didn't work, I began feeling that I Must be unlovable if I couldn't make them love me.

        It took me a while to realize again that I was lovable. Intellectually I knew that God loved me and knew me better than I knew myself. So what was it about me that God could find to be lovable? It was so difficult for me to see it. Failed relationships proved that I was unlovable... didn't they? All the mistakes that I have made in my life and all the things that I don't like about myself prove that I am unlovable... don't they?

        When I learned to practice mental "stillness" a few years ago, I started listening for "the still small voice"... the Voice of Love coming from within. Instead of my ego constantly nagging me with my failures and deficiencies, I now had time that I took each day to listen to a different voice. The voice that reminded me: of my successes... of the things that Are lovable about me... that at least, my motives were usually good. ;-) [It's a good practice. Ya ought'a try it out if you don't already.] Still I wrestled with accepting my own lovability... and then I happened to read a couple lines in the Urantia Papers:

"If you could only fathom the motives of your associates, how much better you would understand them. If you could only know your fellows, you would eventually fall in love with them."

        Did this apply to ME also? If I could recognize and understand my own motives, would it help me know myself better and learn to love myself? Gosh! My motives were almost Always good, weren't they? Others may have misinterpreted them, but did that make my motives bad? I realized I had been depending on others for my validation rather than on God within who knew me better than they. Hmmm...

        I'm better now. My marriage is an environment of individual encouragement and self empowerment. I am no longer given cause to feel unlovable. I can Love freely again. I'm "home" again.

Ahhh... That's better!

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The Prayer
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Dear Ever Loving Parent,        
        I am beginning to recognize You within all other people. I Love to see You there and am beginning also to slowly recognize Your presence within myself too. Thank you for that!!

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love, through me, to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-18-98 Sunday Service of Church Within #108
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Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel Joseph Megow

Welcome
********
Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to The Church that is Within.

How well does your religion seem to be serving you in your life's experiences?

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Quotes
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(from: the Tao Te Ching - #72)
When they lose their sense of awe, people turn to religion. When they no longer trust themselves, they begin to depend upon authority.

(from: "St. George and the Dragon" by Edward Hays)
[Said the Dragon to George:]
"Perhaps only a personal religion, the result of a religious experience that is wholly one's own, is truly alive. Only such an experience-fed religion has the power to electrify the imagination and to breathe fire into junk! Who knows, George, maybe the true Church is only a holy umbrella linking together a multitude of uniquely personal religions which have arisen from deep prayer, faith and listening hearts. Imagine countless personal religions in harmony with the Way, but with their own sacraments, rituals and feast days! A belief based on someone else's experience of God may be commendable, but are secondhand religions ever truly dynamic or redemptive? I believe that each person is intended to experience God firsthand and to live out what has been seen and felt."

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-195 Section-9)
        The world needs more firsthand religion. Even Christianity--the best of the religions of the twentieth century--is not only a religion about Jesus, but it is so largely one which men experience secondhand. They take their religion wholly as handed down by their accepted religious teachers. What an awakening the world would experience if it could only see Jesus as he really lived on earth and know, firsthand, his life-giving teachings ! Descriptive words of things beautiful cannot thrill like the sight thereof, neither can creedal words inspire men's souls like the experience of knowing the presence of God. But expectant faith will ever keep the hope-door of man's soul open for the entrance of the eternal spiritual realities of the divine values of the worlds beyond.

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-195 Section-10)
        Ecclesiasticism is at once and forever incompatible with that living faith, growing spirit, and firsthand experience of the faith-comrades of Jesus in the brotherhood of man in the spiritual association of the kingdom of heaven. The praiseworthy desire to preserve traditions of past achievement often leads to the defense of outgrown systems of worship. The well-meant desire to foster ancient thought systems effectually prevents the sponsoring of new and adequate means and methods designed to satisfy the spiritual longings of the expanding and advancing minds of modern men.

(from the RSV Bible - Galatians 3:4-5)
Did you experience so many things in vain? --if it really is in vain. Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith?

(from: The Urantia Papers - Paper-131 Section-3)
        "Cheerfulness and gladness are the rewards of deeds well done and to the glory of the Immortal. No man can rob you of the liberty of your own mind. When the faith of your religion has emancipated your heart, when the mind, like a mountain, is settled and immovable, then shall the peace of the soul flow tranquilly like a river of waters. Those who are sure of salvation are forever free from lust, envy, hatred, and the delusions of wealth. While faith is the energy of the better life, nevertheless, must you work out your own salvation with perseverance. If you would be certain of your final salvation, then make sure that you sincerely seek to fulfill all righteousness. Cultivate the assurance of the heart which springs from within and thus come to enjoy the ecstasy of eternal salvation.

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The Sermon
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How is your religion doing today?

        Is it bringing you Peace? Are you becoming more confident all the time that God is at work in your life providing only good if you will allow it? Are you yet fully assured that choosing God's Will will bring you the greatest happiness and feeling of fulfillment?

        If so, I am very Glad for you and applaud you truly... Your Religion is serving you Quite well inDeed!

How is your religion doing today?

        Does there seem to be too much confusion? Are you struggling uncomfortably with worries of what you think could go wrong at every turn? Does what you want seem to conflict with what God might want?

        If so, don't Worry too much about it... that only makes it seem alot worse than it has to be. Rather, step Forward with an open Mind and an open Heart. Look Openly at what makes you uncomfortable... see truly what about it troubles your heart. Then seek for a way to understand how to let God's will transform it into new learning and personal growth.

        See what Wondrous things can transpire in your life when you do not cling too desperately to your own notions of what will happen in any given situation. Indeed proceed with determination towards a goal! But instead of being disappointed and stressed when things seem to veer away from what you might have intended, look for how the "turn of events" may possibly enhance your understanding of a higher and even more Satisfying Goal... your inner most deep desire, that which you would truly wish to do for the world if only you could... if only it was possible... if only God would let you... if only You would let yourSelf... if only you would let God work, unhampered by doubts, from within you. Trouble yourself not with fear of what is yet unknown... the fear does not serve you but weakens your resolve to discover new understanding of yourself and your Divine Purpose... your Divine Destiny... your Greatest Happiness.

        Make yourself believe that God want's only Good for you. Then act as if you know that it is so. Truly... it IS so.

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The Prayer
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Dear Ever Loving Parent,        
        Why is life so hard? Why does it need to be so difficult? What do you mean, "It doesn't Have to be."? It IS! It's NOT? Then let me see it through Your eyes God. Help me to see as You see. How about if I just let You see through my eyes while I watch? Would that be OK? It Would? God... I hope I learn somethin' from it.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love, through me, to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-25-98 Sunday Service of Church Within #109
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Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel Joseph Megow

Welcome
********
Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to The Church that is Within.

So... What do You want out of Life?

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Quotes
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(The Urantia Papers - Paper-165 Section-4)
"There is no sin in having honest possessions on earth provided your treasure is in heaven, for where your treasure is there will your heart be also. There is a great difference between wealth which leads to covetousness and selfishness and that which is held and dispensed in the spirit of stewardship by those who have an abundance of this world's goods, and who so bountifully contribute to the support of those who devote all their energies to the work of the kingdom."

(from: The RSV Bible - Matthew 6:19-25)
"Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. "The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is sound, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is not sound, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! "No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

(The Urantia Papers - Paper-156 Section-5)
        "But let me warn you against the folly of undertaking to surmount temptation by the effort of supplanting one desire by another and supposedly superior desire through the mere force of the human will. If you would be truly triumphant over the temptations of the lesser and lower nature, you must come to that place of spiritual advantage where you have really and truly developed an actual interest in, and love for, those higher and more idealistic forms of conduct which your mind is desirous of substituting for these lower and less idealistic habits of behavior that you recognize as temptation. You will in this way be delivered through spiritual transformation rather than be increasingly overburdened with the deceptive suppression of mortal desires. The old and the inferior will be forgotten in the love for the new and the superior. Beauty is always triumphant over ugliness in the hearts of all who are illuminated by the love of truth. There is mighty power in the expulsive energy of a new and sincere spiritual affection. And again I say to you, be not overcome by evil but rather overcome evil with good."

(The Urantia Papers - Paper-110 Section-3)
        I cannot but observe that so many of you spend so much time and thought on mere trifles of living, while you almost wholly overlook the more essential realities of everlasting import, those very accomplishments which are concerned with the development of a more harmonious working agreement between you and your Adjusters. The great goal of human existence is to attune to the divinity of the indwelling Adjuster [ed: God Within]; the great achievement of mortal life is the attainment of a true and understanding consecration to the eternal aims of the divine spirit who waits and works within your mind. But a devoted and determined effort to realize eternal destiny is wholly compatible with a light-hearted and joyous life and with a successful and honorable career on earth. Co-operation with the Thought Adjuster does not entail self-torture, mock piety, or hypocritical and ostentatious self-abasement; the ideal life is one of loving service rather than an existence of fearful apprehension.

(Black Elk: Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux, 1863-1950)
        "I cured with the power that came through me. Of course, it was not I who cured, it was the power from the Outer World, the visions and the ceremonies had only made me like a hole through which the power could come to the two-leggeds."
        "If I thought that I was doing it myself, the hole would close up and no power could come through. Then everything I could do would be foolish."

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The Sermon
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What is it that you Truly Treasure?

        I would suggest that one who is honest with him/herself, would discover that their most Cherished Wealth... those things that they would indeed miss the most if they were to lose them... are the gentle and vibrant Experiences of Love, the "ah-ha's" of wonderment at Discoveries of Truth, the enthralling Enrapturement of Beauty, the utter Attractiveness of Goodness. Are these not truly the things which we most crave... our most dearly Treasured Fortune?

        Well of Course they are... Geeze... What a dumb question Daniel. Or is it?

        Hmmm... how much time do you actually spend each day, say... cultivating/seeking/allowing Love? Well, it does seem like we are 'bout always doing the seeking part doesn't it? Often though we are looking for it in impotent places or we wouldn't be so gullible as to get taken in by all the commercials and advertisements that subtly suggest "their product", but a mere transient Thing, is what will make you lovable and attractive... will bring you Love. Yeah Right... I don't Think so! They may seem to work short term, but it is their job to be temporary and to leave you still unsatisfied, or you really wouldn't need More would you?
        On the other hand, how much time do you really spend Cultivating and Allowing and Sharing brotherly/sisterly/parental Love? Some days better than others right? ;-)

         Or... Seeking a greater and more mature understanding of Truth? All of the time? Most of the time? Some of the time? When you have time? Are there only certain places where you can discover Truth... or can you find a measure of Truth anywhere you truthfully look for it?

        Yeah, but, seeing the Incredible Beauty all around us... Hey... can't miss That! Can ya? Do ya? Couldn't ya?

        True Goodness is pretty hard not to recognize though isn't it?... unless of course your focus is bent upon illuminating the bad... then ya can miss it. Thank God when we aren't doing That! Right?

Do you consider yourself Rich?

What is it that you Truly Treasure...
                                ...and where do you store it?

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The Prayer
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Dear God,        
        Let me find Your Love in All, discover more of Your Truth, see more of Your ever-present Beauty, and recognize each manifestation of Your Goodness. These are the things that I Truly Treasure.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love, through me, to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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