Webster says work is "physical or intellectual effort directed to an end." This definition examined from the higher viewpoint gained from Christian Science makes it all the more necessary to be active. Mrs. Eddy writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 3), "To understand God is the work of eternity, and demands absolute consecration of thought, energy, and desire." To work is to be active. When one realizes that it is impossible to remain at a given point mentally, that if he is not making progress he is certainly going in the opposite direction, then he will see the importance of work. We are told that "now is the day of salvation," not some future time, nor in the past, but to-day. The present is all there is for anyone. When the possibilities of the present are underestimated in any way, we are either living in the past or depending upon the future. There are many of us who justify an inactive life because of the excellent work we have done in the past; others may think that as soon as certain difficulties are overcome, they can do that which they know is the right thing to do. These are all excuses, which if analyzed would amount to no more than those given in Jesus' parable of the guests invited to the wedding feast.

The obvious fact concerning these excuses is that the one who offers them is the loser. He is standing in his own light. He is retarding his own growth. The process of working out his salvation is prolonged indefinitely. This journey from "sense to Soul" is made by individual effort. One cannot depend upon another to make this change for him. In the language of Paul, "The carnal mind is enmity against God." Our work is to free ourselves of this carnality. For each carnal appetite which we eliminate we make room for the expression of some quality of the Mind of Christ. Work was the watchword of our Master. He showed by parable, argument, and example the necessity of going forward. The parable of the talents emphasizes the fact that the mental and moral power one has must be used or it will soon be lost. All the good results achieved were evidences of demonstrations accomplished by strict adherence to divine law. There are so many avenues for work that on one need wonder what he can do. In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 201) we read, "The best sermon ever preached is Truth practised and demonstrated by the destruction of sin, sickness, and death." The effort to follow the example of the Master is the best kind of work one can do. Of our progress in this, our lives should be our best testimony. When opportunities present themselves we should grasp them and work with no other desire than to be about our Father's business.

When we realize that our reason for existence is to glorify God, we need not wonder whether or not we should do this or that; for when this realization is gained, the demonstration is made, and the thing is done. Our Wednesday evening meetings should always be active and interesting. Anyone who has received a grain of truth is full of gratitude. Giving a testimony is a demonstration; it is no more difficult to overcome one's sense of diffidence than for another individual to overcome some other temptation. Again it requires work. To say, "I am grateful for the truth," is to glorify God and to let one's light shine. Still, many will listen to the voice of error for weeks, months, and sometimes years before making this demonstration. If we are contented to get and never to give, the time will soon come when we shall be as the servant with the one talent,—even that which we have shall be taken from us. Our watchword should be, Work, until we "have put off the old man with his deeds; and have put on the new man."

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Spiritual Understanding
September 21, 1918

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