The coming of our annual Thanksgiving recalls the psalmist's words, "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits." If we remember all the good that comes to us we have a sense of ever-increasing riches; if, on the contrary, we admit and retain all the evil which seeks admission to our thought, we may have self-imposed burdens which are heavy indeed. It should not be forgotten that the spiritual faculty which perceives good and its manifestation ought to be in constant exercise, for thus we shall choose the good and reject the evil.

The pathetic, yet beautiful story of Hagar is one which makes special appeal to the Christian Scientist. It is scarcely possible to conceive of a more distressing condition than was hers,—a homeless wanderer, alone with her child in the wilderness, their supply of water spent, until in her despair "she cast the child under one of the shrubs," then went "a good way off" so that she might not see him die. Her grief found vent in bitter tears, but then came the manifestation of divine Love, of the infinite care that provides even for the sparrow's need. An angel was sent to tell Hagar that she was not forgotten of God, that her present and her future were in the sure hands of omnipotence! Her immediate need had seemed to be water, and that was supplied; indeed the supply had been there all the time, but the sense of grief and of hopelessness had blinded her so that she did not see it. What happened to her was this: "God opened her eyes;" and this is what divine Truth is doing for multitudes to-day, multitudes who, until the awaking of the spiritual sense, were like Hagar, without hope and without God.

One should not turn away from this story without noting that after the call of the angel "God was with the lad," and we are told that he became the founder of a great nation. The main point of interest in the story, however, is the fact that in her deep distress Hagar became conscious of an angel's presence. The angel and the well of water were not created for her need; both had been near to her when she thought herself forsaken and perishing. It is no slight cause for gratitude to our beloved Leader that we have learned in Christian Science to know that "angels are pure thoughts from God, winged with Truth and Love," and that "with white fingers they point upward to a new and glorified trust, to higher ideals of life and its joys" (Science and Health, pp. 298, 299). Through spiritual sense we behold the angel, and are divinely guided to whatever we need,—to health, happiness, holiness, and to the true sense of wealth. Mrs. Eddy reminds us in this connection that when we give "earnest heed to these spiritual guides they tarry with us."

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November 23, 1907

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