Appreciation

My thought has been very much occupied lately in thinking of that beautiful word—appreciation. In almost all denominations of Christians, we find that the thought of prayer mostly looking for God to do something good,—asking Him to do something good and looking for Him to do more and more good. Christian Science tells us that God has already done all good, infinite good, and that we are right in the midst of infinite good, and I have been asking myself, "Well, then, if this be true, what is it that is wanted? Is it more good?" Surely not. It is simply more appreciation of the good. If a man wishes to enjoy a beautiful gallery of paintings, it is not only necessary for him to find the beautiful gallery of paintings, but he must educate himself to the point where he can appreciate the artistic beauty that is around him, or else it is absolutely nothing to him. If one wishes to hear a famous musician, he must have cultivated himself to the point of appreciation, or he will hear nothing but sound.

And so it seems to me that we are like the musician who seeks music with no appreciation of it, or the one who seeks the gallery with no artistic appreciation. We are in the midst of good, but do not know how to understand it or appreciate or apply it. We do not feel it because there is a lack in ourselves of appreciation. And I would like to suggest to every one that each one may receive the same benefit, and to that end he should ask himself sincerely from the bottom of his heart, "Am I trying daily to appreciate the good that I already have? Do I, as a child, take what is done for me by my parents as a matter of course and always look for more, or am I trying to find within myself an appreciation of what is done? Do I as a parent expect the good done by my child and not appreciate it? Do I take the actions of love from day to day as a matter of course, or do I appreciate and cultivate appreciation for every bit of good that I already have?"

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Testimony of Healing
How I was Converted to Christian Science
October 10, 1901
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