Extensive Gratitude

How many people have reasoned out what they mean when they say they are grateful? The more they have tried to analyze humanly their feeling, the less they may have understood of the essential quality. A surge of human emotion is not the true activity which is acceptable to the divine Mind. As Mrs. Eddy says on page 7 of Science and Health: "Physical sensation, not Soul, produces material ecstasy and emotion. If spiritual sense always guided men, there would grow out of ecstatic moments a higher experience and a better life with more devout self-abnegation and purity." When human ecstasy, mistakenly assumed to be thankfulness, degenerates still further into a mere form of words uttered with fervor, it is the very reverse of actual appreciation of Principle.

Activity of the spiritual man which is pleasing to his creator is gratitude. To declare, "I am grateful to God," is to say practically, "My living is acceptable to divine intelligence;" for only in proportion as the second statement is true is the first any more than a conventional phrase. One needs, therefore, to be modest even in one's avowals of thankfulness. It is, on the other hand, a superfluous and misleading admission to exclaim, "Words can never express my gratitude for Christian Science." Words are one means of expression. When words and deeds, thought and action, coincide, then words are valuable as the expression of Principle. What the divine Mind knows of words is good and must be demonstrable here and now. The human belief about words as limited symbols has to give way, therefore, to the entirety of the spiritual idea. In the divine consciousness, expression is not divided into words and acts; but the true understanding is identical with the true practice. The fact is that words can express the fullness of gratitude only as the mortal sense of meaning is replaced with the immortal truth. Each student of Christian Science must turn his attention to the demonstration of Principle in every way, whether in the choice of courses of action or even in the choice of words.

Testimony of Healing
For about five years before turning to Christian Science...
January 8, 1921

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