Our dear Leader tells us that "desire is prayer; and no loss can occur from trusting God with our desires, that they may be molded and exalted before they take form in words" (Science and Health, p. I). But can the mere repetition of the words, "Give us this day our daily bread," give us more than we (as God's ideas) already have of that which we need? Can simply asking for this bread bring to us a more abundant supply, or satisfy our craving? Can we expect or even hope to be fed and nourished by the divine bounty simply by petitioning that bread be given us?

What is our concept of this bread? Is it that we may be kept from lacking the material? Is it that we may not know an unsatisfied sense of hunger? Is it only that we may have each hour enough and to spare for our finite needs? In a word, are we engaged in the hopeless endeavor of materially outlining a spiritual aspiration? If so, then our thought and asking are amiss. If, however, this concept of bread is the recognition of spiritual reality, if it is to know the will of good only and do it, if the sense of hunger is for greater humility, if it is being prayerfully intent in our obedience to divine Principle, if it is a scientific striving for the fulfilling of God's law, then indeed is our prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread," in the unction of Spirit and with power, and this mental attitude is with understanding.

As man is made in the image and likeness of good, and as there is no conceivable thought in omnipotent and omnipresent Mind that is not wholly good, man, His reflection, desires only the activity of good, the very essence of this bread that we ask to be given us daily. Thus, to know more of God and His Christ, to feel the divine influence in thought, to have a fuller, sweeter, and more confiding sense of Love, to experience more of the healing energy of Truth, is to hunger for this bread "that a man may eat thereof, and not die." In Amos we read: "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord." Surely when we affirm, "Give us this day our daily bread," it means as our beloved Leader says, "Feed the famished affections" (Science and Health, p. 17), nourish our impoverished mentality, quicken us to an intenser consecration of thought and purpose, remove from us that which is not "according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount," build us up in a most holy faith, purify our seeing, clarify our hearing, intensify our feeling, until through the constant renewing of the inner man we apprehend as we are apprehended, and the fruits of the Spirit bear witness to Immanuel, "God with us," in demonstration.

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May 13, 1911

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