Faith Means Freedom

Mentors - Dr. Ernest Holmes

"You need not force or coerce, but you must obey the Law of Life. If you can see God in everything, then God will look back at you through everything."

When Jesus said, "It is done unto you as you believe," he not only announced a law of faith, he explained how it works. If there is a law of faith, it is right where you are, and it will operate like any other law in nature. For instance, it will work like the law of gravitation, which automatically holds everything in place. But so far as you are concerned, it will hold personal things where you place them. You cannot change the law of gravitation; you can change your position in it. As you shift objects around in the position that seems desirable to you, it will hold them there.
   Suppose you want to change the position of the furniture in your room. You move the piano from one place to another. This is an act of choice on your part. Perhaps you wish to move the stove into the living room. This might seem an eccentric act, but the law does not question it. It automatically holds things where you place them; it operates upon your decision. Jesus proclaimed a law of faith that acts on your belief in like manner. Not only is there a law which does something for you, but in doing so it is limited to your belief. This is the important thing to remember.
   It is only common sense to recognize that what this law does for you it must, of necessity, do through you. The gift of Life is not complete until it is accepted. If you believe only in a little good, then the law will be compelled to operate on that little good. Not that the law of itself knows anything about big and little any more than the law of gravitation would know that a mountain is heavier than a marble--it automatically holds everything in place. And the power that does this is invisible, as are all forces in nature.
   Now shift this whole proposition over into the invisible law of good which acts on your faith. This law is like a mirror reflecting your mental attitudes. Therefore, if you say, "I can have a little good," it will produce this small amount of good for you, but if you say, "All the good there is, is mine," with equal certainty it will produce a larger good. If you believe that wherever you go you will meet with love and friendship, with appreciation and gratitude, then this will become the law of your life.
   Often good and sincere persons ask if it is right to use Divine Power for personal purposes. No one thinks it wrong to use other laws of nature for personal purposes. The laws of mind and Spirit are natural laws. Do not hesitate to use these laws for any purpose which is constructive. It is no more selfish to use spiritual law for personal purposes than it is to plant a garden for your personal use. Moreover, there is no escaping this law, for it is as intimate as your own thought, as personal as your own being.
   Use your intellect, imagination and feeling for the purpose of seeing and sensing freedom instead of bondage, joy instead of unhappiness, plenty instead of want, health in place of disease. The very denial of your good keeps that good from you. Reversing this process, through affirmation, will bring about the good you desire.
   It might come as a surprise to many if, when they say, "My poor head!" "My poor back!" or, "My poor circulation!" you were to tell them they are actually using a creative law in a negative way. The laws of mind do not work in one instance while refusing to operate in another. Every time you think, you are using the Law of Mind. How careful, then, you should be to think constructively.
   Mental laws are as real as physical laws, and the use of your creative power is as natural as the use of electricity, but there is not as much known about it. It is because the Law of Life is at the center of your being that your thought is creative. Your individual use of this Law becomes the law of your individual being.
   While this is one of the most profound concepts ever believed in, it is also one of the most simple. Instead of having an individual creative mind, you really have an individual or personal use of a Law which is infinite. Through this Law you can bring things to you from the uttermost parts of the earth. The Mind Principle around you is reactive to your thought. Its chief characteristic is Its susceptibility to impression. It receives the slightest vibration of thought and acts upon it.
   Since this Law acts like a mirror, when you withdraw old images of thought and place new ones in front of this mirror of Mind, the old reflections or conditions cease to exist and the new ones take their place. But if you only half withdraw the old images and only half create new ones, your experience will partake of the nature of both kinds of thought.
   Jesus was very explicit in his teaching of the use of faith. He said, if you ask for bread you will not receive a stone. This is equal to saying, if you plant a rose bush it will not become a lemon tree. The law of faith operates with integrity on the definite idea, thought, expectancy or acceptance implanted in it.
   But the seed must be left in the creative soil of mind until it can mature. There is a time for sowing as well as a time for harvest. Plants must not be pulled up or interrupted in the process of their growth. They must be watered with hope, fertilized with expectancy and cultivated with enthusiasm, gratitude and joyous recognition.
   If the law operates automatically, then you do not coerce, concentrate or compel it. You provide mental attitudes which it may operate upon. You do not hold the law in place; you hold your ideas in place. This is your individual effort. This process is not so much a problem of will as it is one of willingness. The only important role the will plays is in a decision to keep your thought in place long enough to permit the law to operate. This is not a prayer of beseechment but a recognition or acknowledgment of right action.
   It will be well to consider the difference between outlining and choosing. As an individual, you have the right to choose. Being an individual, you cannot escape the necessity of choice. You do the choosing, the law of good does the outlining. This is the distinction between choice and outline. If you choose to plant a tomato seed you have chosen a tomato plant, but you do not outline how many leaves shall grow on the plant, how many stalks it shall have. That belongs to God's law of cause and effect.
  
   When you say, "I know that the Divine Intelligence is attracting certain conditions to me," and when you have affirmed your union with good, you can go about the business of everyday life with no sense of anxiety, knowing that the law of good is working for you. Faith is the most important thing in your life. It is impossible to conceive the grandeur of what it can do. The whole mental scope must be broadened and deepened, the whole expectancy must reach out to more, and the whole imagination must lend its feeling to grateful acceptance and joyous recognition of the Power greater than you are.
   Life wishes to make the gift because, in so doing It is flowing into Its own self-expression. You might say that gravity wishes to hold an object in place because this is its nature. As a matter of fact, it cannot help doing so. But if you place the gas range in the living room and keep it lighted on a hot summer day, you will be uncomfortable. If you place it too close to the draperies no doubt they will catch fire.
   This does not mean that the law would have any evil intent. You could as well put the range in the rear garden. You might put an electric heater in your icebox and the ice would melt, not because the law wishes to destroy the contents of the box, but because laws are always impersonal. Hence, Jesus told his disciples that while there is a law of belief, and of necessity, they must always be using it, being individuals with free will they must expect to reap as they have sown.
   You wish to reap joy, happiness, love, friendship, health, harmony and success. Could you expect to keep your mind filled with such thoughts for yourself unless it was filled with similar thoughts for others? Of course not! This would not make sense. Therefore, Jesus said to love your enemies, be kind to everyone - "give, and to you shall be given." Moreover, he said that when you give, the gift will return to you multiplied. What a marvelous concept this is! It seems too good to be true. Yet, plant a seed in the ground and it multiplies its own type many times. You have a right to expect that what you wish for others will be returned to you through others. But you have no right to expect that you can reap where you have not sown.
   The marvelous teaching of Jesus is not quite as soft as it sounds. His words are statements of the great law of cause and effect, the law that produces justice without judgment, the inevitable result of the law that works with mathematical certainty. You cannot love and hate at the same time, nor can anyone else. Therefore, this man of wisdom said that light overcomes darkness. He did not say that darkness overcomes light.
   Disregarding the softness and beauty of the words of Jesus, the marvelous grandeur of them, you will always find this cold, hard fact staring you in the face; Jesus taught the operation of a law of cause and effect. He said that not one jot or tittle of it can be changed. All the poetry, wit, knowledge and art of the ages cannot alter the fact that love alone begets love, peace alone attracts peace, only that which goes forth in joy can return with gladness - give and to you shall be given, good measure, pressed down and running over.
   You need not force or coerce, but you must obey the law. If you can see God in everything, then God will look back at you through everything. This is the law of give and take. When the time comes that nothing goes forth from you other than that which you would be glad to have return, then you will have reached your heaven.
Dr. Ernest Holmes, "This Thing Called Life" Broadcast Sunday, July 2, 1950

 


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