Gladness and Gratitude

Gratitude is a state of consciousness appreciative of and thankful for benefits received. And gratitude is always associated with gladness or joy. Think of a child who has received a little gift—a toy perhaps—from his mother's loving hands. How spontaneous is his gratitude; how apparent his joy! It is similar with more elderly people: there is gratitude for a gift graciously bestowed; there is gladness accompanying the gratitude.

The gift which calls forth gratitude may not be a material object. Far oftener it is otherwise—a loving look, a kindly smile, an appreciative word—something spiritual! And even the gift of a material object is usually prompted by thought which is spiritual. So that it can be said that gratitude, the spiritual quality indicative of thankfulness, is almost invariably called forth by other spiritual qualities. In a world where matter seems so much in evidence, where the acquisition of matter appears to occupy so much of the time and thought of many, surely this is saying a great deal.

When the earnest Christian Scientist thinks of gratitude, his thoughts naturally turn to the source of all good, even to God Himself. In his epistle James says, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning." That is what the Christian Scientist understands; and in this way: God is the sole creator, the infinitely good Mind. His creation, which is the manifestation of Himself, consists entirely of spiritual ideas. Man, who is the reflection of God, necessarily expresses all of these perfect ideas; and nothing can possibly occur to alter this law of man's being.

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June 29, 1935

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