Finding the Secret Place
Lesson Ten

1. How to seek the secret place--where to find it--how to abide in it--these are the questions that today, more than at any other time in the history of the world, are engaging the hearts of men. More than anything else it is what I want. It is what you want.
2. All the steps that we are taking by speaking words of Truth and striving to manifest the light which we have already received are carrying us on swiftly to the time when we shall have consciously the perfect mind of Christ, with all the love and beauty and health and power which that implies.
3. We need not be anxious or in a hurry for the full manifestation. Let us not at any time lose sight of the fact that our desire, great as it is, is only God's desire in us. "No man can come to me, except the Father that sent me draw him" (Jn. 6:44). The Father in us desires to reveal to us the secret of His presence, else we had not known any hunger for the secret, or for Truth.
4. "Ye did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that ye should go and bear fruit" (Jn. 15:16).
5. Whoever you are that read these words, wherever you stand in the world, be it on the platform preaching the gospel, or in the humblest little home seeking Truth, that you may make it manifest in a sweeter, stronger, less selfish life, know once and forever that you are not seeking God, but God is seeking you. Your longing for greater manifestation is the eternal energy that holds the worlds in their orbits, outpushing through you to get into fuller manifestation. You need not worry. You need not be anxious. You need not strive. Only let it. Learn how to let it.
6. After all our beating about the bush, seeking here and there for our heart's desire, we must come right to Him who is the fulfillment of every desire; who waits to manifest more of Himself to us and through us. If you wanted my love or anything that I am (not that I have), you would not go to Tom Jones or to Mary Smith to get it. Either of those persons might tell you that I could and would give myself, but you would have to come directly to me, and receive of me that which only I am, because I am it.
7. In some way, after all our seeking for the light and Truth, we must learn to wait, each one for himself, upon God for this inner revelation of Truth and our oneness with Him.
8. The light that we want is not some thing that God has to give; it is God Himself. God does not give us life or love as a thing. God is life and light and love. More of Himself in our consciousness, then, is what we all want, no matter what other name we may give it.
9. My enduement of power must come from "on high," from a higher region within myself than my present conscious mind; so must yours. It must be a descent of the Holy (whole, entire, complete) Spirit at the center of your being into your conscious mind. The illumination we want can never come in any other way; nor can the power to make good manifest.
10. We hear a great deal about "sitting in the silence." To many it does not mean very much, for they have not yet learned how to "wait. . .in silence for God only" (Ps. 62:5), or to hear any voice except external ones. Noise belongs to the outside world, not to God. God works in the stillness, and we can so wait upon the Father of our being as to be conscious of the still, inner working--conscious of the fulfillment of our desires. "They that seek Jehovah shall renew their strength" (Is. 40:31).
11. In one of Edward Everett Hale's stories, he speaks of a little girl who, amidst her play with the butterflies and birds in a country place, used to run into a nearby chapel frequently to pray; and after praying always remained perfectly still a few minutes, "waiting," she said, "to see if God wanted to say anything" to her. Children are often nearest the kingdom.
12. When beginning the practice of sitting in the silence, do not feel that you must go and sit with some other person. The presence of another person is apt to distract the mind. Learn first how to commune alone with the Creator of the universe, who is all-companionship. When you are able to withdraw from the outside and be alone with Him, then sitting with others may be profitable to you and to them.
13. "Sitting in the silence" is not merely a sort of lazy drifting. It is a passive, but a definite, waiting upon God. When you want to do this, take a time when you can, for a little while, lay off all care. Begin your silence by lifting up your heart in prayer to the Father of your being. Do not be afraid that, if you begin to pray, you will be too "orthodox." You are not going to supplicate God, who has already given you things "whatsoever ye desire" (Mk. 11:24 A.V.). You have already learned that before you call He has sent that which you desire; otherwise you would not desire it.
14. You know better than to plead with or to beseech God with an unbelieving prayer. But spending the first few moments of your silence in speaking directly to the Father centers your mind on the Eternal. Many who earnestly try to get still and wait upon God have found that, the moment they sit down and close their eyes, their thoughts, instead of being concentrated, are filled with every sort of vain imagination. The most trivial things, from the fixing of a shoestring to the gossipy conversation of a week ago, chase one another in rapid succession through their minds, and at the end of an hour the persons have gained nothing. This is to them discouraging.
15. This is but a natural result of trying not to think at all. Nature abhors a vacuum, and if you make (or try to make) your mind a vacuum, the thought images of others that fill the atmosphere about you will rush in to fill it, leaving you as far away from the consciousness of the divine presence as ever. You can prevent this by beginning your silence with prayer.
16. It is always easier for the mind to say realizingly, "Thy will is being done in me now," after having prayed, "Let Thy will be done in me." It is always easier to say with realization, "God flows through me as life and peace and power," after having prayed, "Let Thy life flow through me anew while I wait." Of course prayer does not change God's attitude toward us, but it is easier for the human mind to take several successive steps with firmness and assurance than for it to take one big, bold leap to a point of eminence and hold itself steady there. While you are thus concentrating your thoughts on God, in definite conversation with the author of your being, no outside thought images can possibly rush in to torment or distract you. Your mind, instead of being open toward the external, is closed to it, and open only to God, the source of all the good you desire.
17. Of course there is to be no set form of words used. But sometimes using words similar to the first few verses of the 103d Psalm, in the beginning of the silent communion, makes it a matter of face-to-face speaking: "Thou forgivest all mine iniquities (or mistakes); Thou healest all my diseases; Thou redeemest my life from destruction, and crownest me with loving kindness, now, now, while I wait upon Thee." Sometimes we may enter into the inner chamber with the words of a familiar hymn; as:

Thou art the life within me, O Christ, Thou King of Kings;
Thou art Thyself the answer To all my questionings.

18. Repeat the words many times, not anxiously or with strained effort, not reaching out and up and away to an outside God; but let the petition be the quiet, earnest uplifting of the heart to a higher something right within itself, even to "the Father in me" (Jn. 14:11). Let it be made with the quietness and assurance of a child speaking to his loving father.
19. Some persons carry in their faces a strained, white look that comes from an abnormal "sitting in the silence," as they term it. It is hard for them to know that God is right here within them, and while in the silence they fall into the way of reaching away out and up after Him. Such are earnest men truly feeling after God if haply they may find Him, when all the time He is near them, even in their very hearts. Do not reach out thus. This is as though a seed were planted in the earth, and just because it recognized a vivifying, life-giving principle in the sun's rays, it did nothing but strain and stretch itself upward and outward to get more of the sun. You can see at a glance that by so doing it would get no solid roots in the earth where God intended them to be. The seed needs to send roots downward while it keeps its face turned toward the sun, and lets itself be drawn upward by the sun.
20. Some of us, in our desire to grow, and having recognized the necessity of waiting upon God in the stillness for the vivifying and renewing of life, make the mistake of climbing up and away from our bodies. Such abnormal outstretching and upreaching is neither wise nor profitable. After a little of it, one begins to get cold feet and congested head. While one is thus reaching out, the body is left alone, and it becomes correspondingly weak and negative. This is all wrong. We are not to reach out away from the body even after the Son of righteousness. We are rather to be still, and let the Son shine on us right where we are. The sun draws the shoot up as fast as it can bear it and be strong. We do not need to grow ourselves, only to let the Son "grow" us.
21. But we are consciously to let it; not merely to take the attitude of negatively letting it by not opposing it, but to put ourselves consciously where the Son can shine on us, and then "be still, and know" (Ps. 46:10) that while we wait there it is doing the work. While waiting upon God, we should, as much as possible, relax ourselves both mentally and physically. To use a very homely but practical illustration, take much the attitude of the entire being as do the fowls when taking a sun bath in the sand. Yet there is something more than a lax passivity to be maintained through it all. There must be a sort of conscious, active taking of that which God gives freely to us.
22. Let me see if I can make it plain. We first withdraw ourselves bodily and mentally from the outside world. We "enter into thine inner chamber, and . . . shut thy door" (Mt. 6:6) (the closet of our being, the very innermost part of ourselves), by turning our thoughts within. Just say, "Thou abidest within me; Thou art alive there now; Thou has all power; Thou art now the answer to all I desire; Thou dost now radiate Thyself from the center of my being to the circumference, and out into the visible world as the fullness of my desire." Then be still, absolutely still. Relax every part of your being, and believe that it is being done. The divine substance does flow in at the center and out into the visible world every moment you wait; for it is an immutable law that "every one that asketh receiveth" (Mt. 7:8). And substance will come forth as the fulfillment of your desire if you expect it to. "According to your faith be it done unto you" (Mt. 9:29).
23. If you find your mind wandering, bring it right back by saying again: "It is being done; Thou art working in me; I am receiving that which I desire," and so forth. Do not look for signs and wonders, but just be still and know that the very thing you want is flowing in and will come forth into manifestation either at once or a little farther on.
24. Go even beyond this and speak words of thanksgiving to this innermost Presence, that it has heard and answered, that it does now come forth into visibility. There is something about the mental act of thanksgiving that seems to carry the human mind far beyond the region of doubt into the clear atmosphere of faith and trust, where "all things are possible" (Mt. 19:26). Even if at first you are not conscious of having received anything from God, do not worry or cease from your thanksgiving. Do not go back of it again to the asking, but continue giving thanks that while you waited you did receive, and that what you received is now manifest; and believe me, you will soon rejoice and give thanks, not rigidly from a sense of duty, but because of the sure manifest fulfillment of your desire.
25. Do not let waiting in the silence become a bondage to you. If you find yourself getting into a strained attitude of mind or "heady," get up and go about some external work for a time. Or, if you find that your mind will wander, do not insist on concentrating; for the moment you get into a rigid mental attitude you shut off all inflow of the Divine into your consciousness. There must be a sort of relaxed passivity and yet an active taking it by faith. Shall I call it active passivity?
26. Of course, as we go in spiritual understanding and desire, we very soon come to the place where we want more than anything else that the desires of infinite wisdom and love be fulfilled in us. "My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith Jehovah. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my thoughts than your thoughts" (Is. 55:8).
27. Our desires are God's desires, but in a limited degree. We soon throw aside our limitations, our circumscribed desires (as soon, at least, as we see that more of God means more of good and joy and happiness), and with all our hearts we cry out in the silent sitting: "Fulfill Thy highest thought in me now!" We make ourselves as clay in the potter's hands, willing to be molded anew, to be "transformed into the same image" (2 Cor. 3:18), to be made after the mind of the indwelling Christ.
28. We repeat from time to time, while waiting, words something like these: "Thou art now renewing me according to Thy highest thought for me; Thou art radiating Thy very self throughout my entire being, making me like to Thyself--for there is nothing else but Thee. Father, I thank Thee, I thank Thee." Be still, be still while He works. "Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith Jehovah of Hosts" (Zech. 4:6).
29. While you thus wait, and let Him, He will work marvelous changes in you. You will have a strange new consciousness of serenity and quiet, a feeling that something has been done, that some new power to overcome has come to you. You will be able to say, "I and the Father are one" (Jn. 10:30), with a new meaning, a new sense of reality and awe that will make you feel very still. Oh! how one conscious touch of the Oversoul makes all life seem different! All the hard things become easy; the troublesome things no longer have power to worry; the rasping people and things of the world lose all power to annoy. Why? Because, for a time, we see as He sees. We do not have to deny evil; we know in that moment that it is nothing at all. We no longer rigidly affirm the good from sense of duty, but with delight and spontaneity, because we cannot help it. It is revealed to us as good. Faith has become reality.
30. Do not be discouraged if you do not at once get conscious results in this silent sitting. Every moment that you wait, Spirit is working to make you a new creature in Christ--a creature possessing consciously His very own qualities and powers. There may be a working for days before you see any change; but it will surely come. You will soon get so that you can go into the silence, into conscious communion with your Lord, at a moment's notice, at any time, in any place.
31. There is no conflict or inconsistency between this waiting upon God to be made perfect, and the way of "speaking the word" out toward the external to make perfection visible. Waiting upon and consciously receiving from the Source only make the outspeaking (holding of right thoughts and words) easy, instead of laborious. Try it and see.
32. Clear revelation--the word made alive as Truth to the consciousness--must come to every man who continues to wait upon God. But remember, there are two conditions imposed. You are to wait upon God, not simply to run in and out, but to abide, to dwell "in the secret place of the Most High" (Ps. 91:1).
33. Of course I do not mean that you are to give all the time to sitting alone in meditation and silence, but that your mind shall be continually in an attitude of waiting upon God, not an attitude of clamoring for things, but of listening for the Father's voice and expecting a manifestation of the Father to your consciousness.
34. Jesus, our Master in spiritual knowledge and power, had many hours of lone communion with the Father, and His greatest works were done after these. So may we, so must we, commune alone with the Father if we would manifest the Christ. But Jesus did not spend all His time in receiving. He poured forth into everyday use, among the children of men in the ordinary vocations of life, that which He received of the Father. His knowledge of spiritual things was used constantly to uplift and to help other persons. We must do likewise; for newness of life and of revelation flows in the faster as we give out that which we have to help others. "Go, preach. . .Heal the sick. . .freely ye received, freely give" (Mt. 10:7,8), He said. Go manifest the Christ within you, which you have received of the Father. God works in us to will and to do, but we must work out our own salvation.
35. The second indispensable condition to finding the secret place and abiding in it is "my expectation is from him":

"My soul, wait thou in silence for God only;
For my expectation is from him." --(Ps. 62:5)

"Truly in vain is the help that is looked for from the hills, the tumult on the mountains: truly in Jehovah our God is the salvation of Israel" (Jer. 3:23). It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.
36. Is your expectation from Him, or is it from books, or teachers, or friends, or meetings, or societies?
37. "The King of Israel, even Jehovah is in the midst of thee" (Zeph. 3:15). Think of it; In the midst of you--at the center of your being this moment while you read these words. Say it, say it, think it, dwell on it, whoever you are, wherever you are! In the midst of you! Then what need for all this running around? What need for all this strained outreaching after Him?
38. "Jehovah thy God is in the midst of thee (not God in the midst of another, but in the midst of you, standing right where you are) a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over thee with singing" (Zeph. 3:17). You are His love. It is you that He will rejoice in with singing if you will turn away from people to Him within you. His singing and joy will so fill you that your life will be a great thanksgiving.
39. Your Lord is not my Lord, nor is my Lord your Lord. Your Lord is the Christ within your own being. My Lord is the Christ within my own being.
40. There is one Spirit, one Father of all, in us all, but there are different manifestations or individualities. Your Lord is He who will deliver you out of all your troubles. Your Lord has no other business but to manifest Himself to you and through you, and so make you mighty with His own mightiness made visible; whole with His health; perfect by showing forth the Christ perfection.
41. Let all your expectation be from your Lord. Let your communion be with Him. Wait upon the inner abiding Christ often, just as you would wait upon any visible teacher. When you are sick "wait thou in silence for God only" (Ps. 62:5) as the Most High, rather than upon healers. When you lack wisdom in small or large matters, "wait thou in silence for God only," and see what marvelous wisdom for action will be given you. When desiring to speak the word that will deliver another from the bondage of sickness or sin or sorrow, "wait thou in silence for God only," and exactly the right word will be given you, and power will go with it, for it will be alive with the power of Spirit.

Spiritual Gifts
Lesson Eleven

1. It is very natural for the human heart first to set out in search of Truth because of the "loaves and the fishes" (Mt. 15:36).
2. Perhaps it is not too much to say that the majority of people first turn to God because of some weakness, some failure, some almost unbearable want in their lives. After having vainly tried in all other ways to overcome or to satisfy the want, they turn in desperation to God.
3. There is in the heart of even the most depraved human being, though he would not for worlds have others know it, an instinctive feeling that somewhere there is a power that is able to give him just what he wants; that if he could only reach that which to his conception is God, he could prevail on Him to grant the things desired. This feeling is itself God-given. It is the divine self, though only a spark at the center of the man's being, suggesting to him the true remedy for all his ills.
4. Especially have people been led to seek Truth for the reward, "for the very works' sake" (Jn. 14:11), during the last few years, since they have come to know that God is not only able, but willing, to deliver them from all the burdens of their everyday life. Everyone wants to be free, free, free as the birds of the air--free from sickness, free from poverty, free from all forms of evil; and he has a right to be; it is a God-given right.
5. Thus far nearly all teaching has limited the manifestation of infinite love to one form--that of healing, Sickness, seemingly incurable disease, and suffering reigned on every side, and every sufferer wanted to be free. We had not yet known that there was willingness as there was power--aye, more, that there was intense desire--on the part of our Father to give us something more than sweet, patient submission to suffering.
6. When first the truth was taught that the divine presence ever lives in man as perfect life, and can be drawn on by our recognition and faith to come forth into full and abounding health, it attracted widespread attention, and justly so. Both teachers and students centered their gaze on this one outcome of a spiritual life, losing sight of any larger, fuller, or more complete manifestation of the indwelling Father. Teachers told all their pupils most emphatically that this knowledge of Truth would enable them to heal, and they devoted all their teaching to explanation of the principles and to giving formulas and other instructions for healing the body. Time has shown that there are larger and broader views of the truth about spiritual gifts.
7. Healing of the body is beautiful and good. Power to heal is a divine gift, and as such you are fully justified in seeking it. But God wants to give you infinitely more.
8. Why should you and I restrict the limitless One to the bestowal of a particular gift, unless, indeed, we be so fairly consumed with an inborn desire for it that we are sure that it is God's highest desire for us? In that case we shall not have to try to heal. Healing will flow from us wherever we are. Even in a crowd of people, without any effort of our own, the one who needs healing will receive it from us; that one will "touch" (Mt. 9:21) us, as did the one woman in all the multitude jostling and crowding against Jesus. Only one touched Him.
9. Healing is truly a "branch" of "the vine" (Jn. 15:4), but it is not the only branch. There are many branches, all of which are necessary to the perfect vine, which is seeking through you and me to bear much fruit. What God wants is that we shall grow into such conscious oneness with Him, such realization that He who is the substance of all good really abides in us, that "ask whatsoever ye will, and it shall be done unto you" (Jn. 15:7).
10. If you are faithfully and earnestly living what Truth you know, and still find that your power to heal is not so great as it was at first, recognize it as all good. Be assured, no matter what anyone else says to you or thinks, that the seeming failure does not mean loss of power. It means that you are to let go of the lesser, in order that you may grasp the whole, in which the lesser is included. Do not fear for a moment to let go of just one little branch of divine power; choose rather to have the highest thoughts of infinite mind, let them be what they may, fulfilled through you. We need to take our eyes off the ends of the branches, the results, and keep them centered in the vine.
11. You are a vessel for some purpose. If, when the time comes, you let go cheerfully, without humiliation or shame or sense of failure, your tense, rigid mortal grasp on some particular form of manifestation, such as healing, and "desire earnestly the greater gifts" (Cor. 12:31), whatever they may be in your individual case, you will be simply marvelous in the eyes of men. These works will be done without effort on your part, because they will be God, omnipotent, omniscient, manifesting Himself through you in His own chosen direction.
12. Paul said, "Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. . .Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. . .For to one is given through the Spirit the word of wisdom; and to another the word of knowledge, according to the same Spirit: to another faith. . .to another gifts of healings. . .to another workings of miracles; and to another prophecy; and to another discernings of spirits: to another divers kinds of tongues; and to another the interpretation of tongues" (1 Cor. 12:1,4,8-10).
13. The same Spirit, always and forever the same, and one God, one Spirit, but in different forms of manifestation. The gift of healing is no more, no greater, than the gift of prophecy; the gift of prophecy is no greater than faith, for faith (when it is really God's
faith manifested through us), even as a grain of mustard seed, shall be able to remove mountains; the working of miracles is no greater than the power to discern spirits (or the thoughts and intents of other men's hearts, which are open always to Spirit). And "greatest of all these is love" (1 Cor. 13:13); for "love never faileth" (1 Cor. 13:8) to melt down all forms of sin, sorrow, sickness, and trouble. "Love never faileth."
14. "But all these worketh the one and the same Spirit, dividing to each one severally even as he will. For as the body is one. . .all the members of the body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ. . . .If the whole body were an eye (or gift of healing), where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where the smelling? . . .And the eye cannot say to the hand, I have no need of you." "But now hath God set the members each one of them in the body, even as it please him" (1 Cor. 12:11, 12, 17, 21, 18).
15. Thus Paul enumerates some of the free "gifts" of the Spirit to those who will not limit the manifestations of the Holy One, but yield themselves to Spirit's desire within them. Why should we fear to abandon ourselves to the workings of infinite love and wisdom? Why be so afraid to let Him have His own way with us, and through us?
16. Has not the gift of healing, the only gift we have thus far sought, been a good and blessed one, not only to ourselves, but to all with whom we come in contact?
17. Then why should we fear to wait upon God with a perfect willingness that the Holy Spirit manifest itself through us as it will, knowing that, whatever the manifestation, it will be good--all good to us and to those around us!
18. Oh, for more men who have the courage to abandon themselves utterly to infinite will--men who dare let go every human being for guidance, and, seeking the Christ within themselves, let the manifestation be what He wills!
19. Such courage might possibly mean, and probably would mean at first, a seeming failure, a going down from some apparent success that had been in the past. But the going down would only mean a mighty coming up, a most glorious resurrection of God into visibility through you in His own chosen way, right here and now. The failure, for the time, would only mean a grand, glorious success a little later on.
20. Do not fear failure, but call failure good; for it really is. Did not Jesus stand an utter failure, to all appearances, when He stood dumb before Pilate, all His cherished principles come to naught, unwilling to deliver Himself, or to "demonstrate" over the agonizing circumstances of His position?
21. But had He not seemed to fail right at that point, there never would have been the infinitely grander demonstration of the Resurrection a little later on. "Except a grain of wheat fall into the earth and die, it abideth by itself alone: but if it die, it beareth much fruit" (Jn. 12:24). If you have clung to one spiritual gift because you were taught that, and you begin to fail, believe me, it is only the seeming death, the seeming disappearance, of one gift, in order that out of it may spring many new gifts--brighter, higher, fuller ones, because they are the ones that God has chosen for you.
22. Your greatest work will be done in your own God-appointed channel. If you will let Spirit possess you wholly, if you will to have the highest will done in you and through you continually, you will be quickly moved by it out of your present limitations, which a half success always indicates, into a manifestation as much fuller and more perfect and beautiful as is the new grain than the old seed, which had to fall into the ground and die.
23. Old ways must die. Failure is only the death of the old that there may be the hundredfold following. If there comes to you a time when you do not demonstrate over sickness, as you did at first, do not think that you need lean on others entirely. It is beautiful and good for another to "heal" you bodily by calling forth universal life through you; but right here there is something higher and better for you.
24. Spirit, the Holy Spirit, which is God in movement, wants to teach you something, to open a bigger, brighter way to you. This apparent failure is His call to you to arrest your attention and turn you to Him.

"Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace:
Thereby good shall come unto thee." --(Job 22:21)

Turn to the divine presence within yourself. Seek Him. Be still before Him. Wait upon God quietly, earnestly, but constantly and trustingly, for days--aye weeks, if need be! Let Him work in you, and sooner or later you will spring up into a resurrected life of newness and power that you never before dreamed of.
25. When these transition periods come, in which God would lead us higher, should we get frightened or discouraged, we only miss the lesson that He would teach, and so postpone the day of receiving our own fullest, highest gift. In our ignorance and fear, we are thus hanging on to the old grain of wheat that we can see, not daring to let it go into the ground and die, lest there be no resurrection, no newness of life, nothing bigger and grander to come out of it.
26. Oh, do not let us longer fear our God, who is all good, and who longs only to make us each one a giant instead of a pygmy!
27. What we all need to do above everything else is to cultivate the acquaintance or consciousness of Spirit within ourselves. We must take our attention off results, and seek to live the life. Results will be "added unto" (Mt. 6:33) us in greater measure when we turn our thoughts less to the "works" and more to embodying the indwelling Christ in our entire being. We have come to a time when there must be less talking about Truth and teaching others to do so. There must be more incorporating of Truth in our very flesh and bone.
28. How are you to do this?
29. "I am the way, and the truth, and the life" (Jn. 14:6), says the Christ at the center of your being.
30. "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth (consciously) in me, and I in him (in His consciousness), the same beareth much fruit: for apart from me (or severed from me in your consciousness) ye can do nothing. . .If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatsoever ye will, and it shall be done unto you" (Jn. 15:5,7).
31. I do assure you, as do all teachers, that you can bring good things of whatever kind you desire into your life by holding to them as yours in the invisible until they become manifest. But, beloved, do you not see that your highest, your first--aye, your continual--thought should be to seek the abiding in Him, to seek the knowing as a living reality, not as a fine-spun theory that He abides in you? After that, ask what you will, be it power to heal, to cast out demons, or even the "greater works" (Jn. 14:12), and "it shall be done unto you" (Jn. 15:7).
32. There is one Spirit--"One God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in all. But unto each one of us was the grace (or free gift) given according to the measure of the gift of Christ" in us (Eph. 4:6,7).
33. "For which cause I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee" (2 Tim. 1:6).
34. Do not be afraid, "for God gave us not a spirit of fearfulness; but of power and love and discipline" (2 Tim. 1:7).
35. It is all one and the same Spirit. To be the greatest success, you do not want my gift, nor do I want yours; each wants his own, such as will fit his size and shape, his capacity and desires, such as not the human mind of us, but the highest in us, shall choose. Seek to be filled with Spirit, to have the reality of things incarnated in larger degree in your consciousness. Spirit will reveal to your understanding your own specific gift, or manner of God's desired manifestation through you.
36. Let us not desert our own work, our own God within us, to gaze or pattern after our neighbor. Let us not seek to make his gift ours; let us not criticize his failure to manifest any specific gift. Whenever he "fails," give thanks to God that He is leading him up into a higher place, where there can be a fuller and more complete manifestation of the divine presence through him.
37. And "I. . .beseech you to walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were called, with all lowliness and meekness, with long suffering, forbearing one another in love; giving diligence to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Eph. 4:1-3).

Lesson Twelve
Unity of the Spirit

1. Did we not know it as a living reality that behind all the multitude and variety of human endeavors to bring about the millennium there stands forever the master Mind, which sees the end from the beginning, the master Artist who Himself is (through human vessels as His hands) putting on the picture here a touch of one color and there a touch of another, according to the vessel used, we might sometimes be discouraged.
2. Were it not at times so utterly ridiculous, it would always be pitiful to see the human mind of man trying to limit God to personal comprehension. However much any one of us may know of God, there will always be unexplored fields in the realms of expression, and it is an evidence of our narrow vision to say: "This is all there is of God."
3. Suppose that a dozen persons are standing on the dark side of a wall in which are various sized openings. Viewing the scene outside through the opening assigned to him, one sees all there is within a certain radius. He says, "I see the whole world; in it are trees and fields." Another, through a larger opening, has a more extended view; he says: "I see trees and fields and houses; I see the whole world." The next one, looking through a still larger opening, exclaims: "Oh! You are all wrong! I alone see the whole world; I see trees and fields and houses and rivers and animals."
4. The fact is, each one looking at the same world sees according to the size of the aperture through which he is looking, and he limits the world to just his own circumscribed view of it. You would say at once that such limitation was only a mark of each man's ignorance and narrowness. Everyone would pity the man who thus displayed--aye, fairly vaunted--his ignorance.
5. From time immemorial there have been schisms and divisions among religious sects and denominations. And now with the newer light that we have, even the light of the knowledge of one God immanent in all men, many still cling to external differences, so postponing, instead of hastening, the day of the millennium; at least they postpone it for themselves.
6. I want, if possible, to help break down the seeming "middle wall of partition" (Eph. 2:14), even as Christ, the living Christ, does in reality break down or destroy all misunderstanding. I want to help you to see that there is no real wall of difference between all the various sects of the new theology, except such as appear to you because of your circumscribed view. I want you to see, if you do not already, that every time you try to limit God's manifestation of Himself in any person or through any person, in order to make that manifestation conform to what you see as Truth, you are only crying loudly: "Ho! everyone, come and view my narrowness and my ignorance!"
7. I want to stimulate you to lose sight of all differences, all side issues and lesser things, and seek but for one thing--that is the consciousness of the presence of an indwelling God in you and your life. And believe me, just as there is less separation between the spokes of a wheel the nearer they get to the hub, so you will find that the nearer you both come to the perfect Center, which is the Father, the less difference will there be between you and your brother.
8. The faith healer, he who professes to believe only in what he terms "divine healing" (as though there could be any other healing than divine), differs from the so-called spiritual scientist only in believing that he must ask, seek, knock, importune, before he can receive; while he of the Truth teaching knows that he has already received God's free gift of life and health and all things, and that by speaking the word of Truth the gifts are made manifest. Both get like results (God made visible) through faith in the invisible. The mind of the one is lifted to a place of faith by asking or praying; the mind of the other is lifted to a place of faith by speaking words of Truth.
9. Is there any real difference?
10. The mental scientist usually scorns to be classed with either of the other two sects. He loudly declares that "all is mind" and that all the God he knows or cares anything about is the invincible, unconquerable I within him, which nothing can daunt or overcome.
11. He talks about conscious mind and subconscious mind, and he fancies that he has something entirely different from the infinitely higher than either of the other sects. He boldly proclaims, "I have Truth; the others are in error, too orthodox," and thus he calls the world's attention to the small size of the aperture through which he is looking at the stupendous whole.
12. Beloved, as surely as you and I live, it is all one and the same Truth. There may be a distinction, but it is without difference.
13. The happy person who will from his heart exclaim, "Praise the Lord!" no matter what occurs to him, and who thereby finds that "to them that love God all things work together for good" (Rom. 8:28), is in reality saying the "all is good" of the metaphysician. Each one does simply "in all thy ways acknowledge him [or God, good]" (Prov.3:6), which is indeed a magical wand, bringing sure deliverance out of any trouble to all who faithfully use it.
14. The teachings of spirit are intrinsically the same, because Spirit is one. I heard an uneducated woman speak in a most orthodox prayer meeting some time ago. She knew no more of religious science than a babe knows of Latin. Her face, however, was radiant with the light of the Christ manifest through her. She told how, five or six years before, she had been earnestly seeking to know more of God (seeking in prayer, as she knew nothing about seeking spiritual light from people), and one day, in all earnestness, she asked that some special word of His will might be given directly to her as a sort of private message. These words flashed into her mind: "If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. . . .No man can serve two masters" (Mt.6:22-24).
15. She had read these words many times, but that day they were illumined by Spirit; and she saw that to have an eye "single" meant seeing but one power in her life; while she saw two powers (God and Devil, good and evil) she was serving two masters. From that day to this, though she had passed through all sorts of troublous circumstances--trials of poverty, illness in family, intemperate husband--she found always the most marvelous, full, and complete deliverance out of them all by resolutely adhering to the "single" eye--seeing God only. She would not look even for a moment at the seeming evil to combat it or rid herself of it, because, as she said, "Lookin' at God with one eye and this evil with the other is bein' double-eyed, and God told me to keep my eye single."
16. This woman, who had never heard of any science, or metaphysical teaching, or laws of mind, was combating and actually overcoming the tribulations of this world by positively refusing to have anything but a single eye. She had been taught in a single day by infinite Spirit the whole secret of how to banish evil and have only good and joy in her. Isn't it all very simple?
17. At the center, all is one and the same God forevermore. I believe that the veriest heathen that ever lived, he who worships the golden calf as his highest conception of God, worships God. His mind has not yet expanded to a state where he can grasp any idea of God apart from a visible form, something that he can
see with human eyes and handle with fleshly hands. But at heart he is seeking something higher than his present conscious self to be his deliverance out of evil.
18. Are you and I, with all our boasted knowledge, doing anything more or different?
19. The Spirit at the center of even the heathen, who is God's child, is thus seeking, though blindly, its Father-God. Shall anyone dare to say that it will not find that which it seeks--its Father? Shall we not rather say it will find, because of that immutable law that "he that seeketh findeth" (Mt.7:8)?
20. You have now come to know that, at the center of your being, God (omnipotent power) ever lives. From the nature of your relationship to Him, and by His own immutable laws, you may become conscious of His presence and eternally abide in Him and He in you.
21. The moment that any man really comes to recognize that which is absolute Truth--namely, that one Spirit, even the Father, being made manifest in the Son, ever lives at the center of all human beings--he will know that he can cease forever from any undue anxiety about bringing others into the same external fold that he is in. If your friend, or your son, or your husband, or your brother does not see Truth as you see it, do not try by repeated external arguments to convert him.
22. "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto myself" (Jn. 12:32). That which is needed is not that you (the human, which is so fond
of talk and argument) try to lift up your brother. The Holy Spirit, or Christ within him, declares: "And I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men" (Jn. 13:32). You can silently lift up this I within the man's own being, and it will draw the man up unto--what? Your teaching? No, unto Christ, the divine in him.
23. Keep your own light lifted up by living the victorious life of Spirit. And then, remembering that your dear one, as well as yourself, is an incarnation of the Father, keep him silently committed to the care of his own divine Spirit. You do not know what God wants to do in him; you never can know.
24. If you fully recognize that the God that dwells in you dwells in all men, you know that each one's own Lord, the Christ within each one, will make no mistake. The greatest help that you can give to any man is to tell him silently, whenever you think of him: "The Holy Spirit lives within you; He cares for you, is working in you that which He would have you do, and is manifesting Himself through you." Then let him alone. Be at perfect rest about him, and the result will be infinitely better than you could have asked.
25. Keep ever in mind that each living person in all God's universe is a radiating center of the same perfect One, some radiating more and some less, according to the awakened consciousness of the individual. If you have become conscious of this radiation in yourself, keep your thought centered right there, and the Spirit of the living God will radiate from you in all directions with mighty power, doing without noise or words a great work in lifting others up. If you want to help others who are not yet awakened to this knowledge, center your thoughts on this same idea of them--that they are radiating centers of the All-Perfect. Keep your eye "single" for them, as did the uneducated woman for herself, and Spirit will teach them more in a day than you could in years.
26. Throughout the ages man has leaned to the idea of separateness instead of oneness. He has believed himself separate from God and separate from other men. And even in these latter days when we talk so much about oneness, most teachers of metaphysics manage again to separate God's children from Him by saying that while the child may suffer the Father knows no suffering nor does He take cognizance of the child's suffering; that we, His children, forever a part of Him, are torn and lacerated, while He, knowing nothing of this, goes on as serenely and indifferently as the full moon sails through the heavens on a winter night.
27. It is little wonder that many, to whom the first practical lessons in the gospel of the Christ came as liberation and power, should in time of failure and heartache have turned back to the old limited belief of the Fatherhood of God.
28. There is no real reason why we, having come to recognize God as infinite substance, should be by this recognition deprived of the familiar fatherly companionship that in all ages has been so dear to the human heart. There is no necessity for us to separate God as substance and God as tender Father; no reason why we should not, and every reason why we should, have both in one; they are one--God principle outside of us as unchangeable law, God within us as tender, loving Father-Mother, who has compassion for our every sorrow.
29. There is no reason why, because in our earlier years some of us were forced into the narrow puritanical limits that stood for a religious belief, we should now so exaggerate our freedom as to fancy that we are entirely self-sufficient and shall never again need the sweet, uplifting communion between Father and child. The created, who ever lives, moves, and has his being in his Creator, needs the conscious presence of that Creator, and cannot be entirely happy in knowing God only as cold, unsympathetic Principle. Why cannot both conceptions find lodgment in the minds and hearts? Both are true, and both are necessary parts of a whole. The two were made to go together, and in the highest cannot be separated.
30. God as the underlying substance of all things, God as principle, is unchanging, and does remain forever incognizant of and unmoved by the changing things of time and sense. It is true that God as principle does not feel pain, is not moved by the cries of children of men for help. It is a grand, stupendous thought that this power is unchanging law, just as unchanging in its control of our affairs as it is in the government of the starry heavens. One is fairly conscious of his entire being's expanding into grandeur as he dwells on the thought.
31. But this is not all, any more than the emotional side is all. True, there is law; but there is gospel also. Nor does gospel make law of no effect; it fulfills law. God is principle, but God is individual also. Principle becomes individualized the moment it comes to dwell in external manifestation in a human body.
32. Principle does not change because of pity or sympathy, even "as a father pitieth his children" (Ps. 103:13). The Father in us always moves into helpfulness when called on and trusted. It is as though infinite wisdom and power, which outside are Creator, Upholder, and Principle, become transformed into infinite love, which is Father-Mother, with all the warmth and tender helpfulness that this word implies, when they become focalized, so to speak, within a human body.
33. I do not at all understand it, but in some way this indwelling One does move to lift the consciousness of His children up and to place it parallel with God, Principle, Law, so that no longer two are crossed, but the two--aye, the three--the human consciousness, the individual father, and the Holy Spirit--are made one. In every life, with our present limited understanding, there come times when the bravest heart goes down, for the moment, under the apparent burdens of life; times when the strongest intellect bends like a "reed shaken with the wind" (Mt.11:7), when the most self-sufficient mind feels a helplessness that wrings from it a cry for help from "the rock that is higher that I" (Ps. 61:2).
34. Every metaphysician either has reached, or must
in the future reach, this place; the place where God as cold principle alone will not suffice any more than in the past God as personality alone could wholly satisfy. There will come moments when the human heart is so suddenly struck as to paralyze it, and for the moment it is impossible, even with strained effort, to think right thoughts.
35. At such times there will come but little comfort from the thought: "This suffering comes as a result of my wrong thinking; but God, my Father, takes no cognizance of it: I must work it out unaided and alone." Just here we must have, and we do have, the motherhood of God, which is not cold Principle any more than your love for your child is cold. I would not make God as Principle less, but God as individual more.
36. The whole business of your Lord (the Father in you) is to care for you, to love you with an everlasting love, to note your slightest cry, and to rescue you.
37. Then you ask, "Why doesn't He do it?" Because you do not recognize His indwelling and His power, and by resolutely affirming that He does now manifest Himself as your all-sufficiency, call Him forth into visibility.
38. God (Father-Mother) is a present help in time of need; but there must be a recognition of His presence, a turning away from human efforts, and an acknowledgement of God only (a single eye) before He becomes manifest.
38. God (Father-Mother) is a present help in time of need; but there must be a recognition of His presence, a turning away from human efforts, and an acknowledgement of God only (a single eye) before He becomes manifest.