Untiring Benevolence

Nothing less than a benevolence that does not tire can bring peace and balm to men whose thoughts and lives have been wracked with the fury and horror of war. Well is it that true benevolence, being of the nature of Love, can accomplish this because of the infinity of its scope and expression. On page 165 of "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany" Mary Baker Eddy writes: "Goodness and benevolence never tire. They maintain themselves and others and never stop from exhaustion." Man is identified not with that which is easily weary, quickly depleted, but with resources that are limitless, in wisdom, in patience, and in compassion. Let us take courage, then, from the fact of God's boundlessness, as we seek to supply the needs, great and small, of a stricken world.

"Wherever there is a human being," wrote Seneca, "there is an opportunity for kindness." Sometimes it seems more strikingly impelling to feel benevolence for those at a distance, in distress and danger, whereby sympathy is aroused and imagination exercised, than for those with whom we are immediately concerned. Nevertheless, only the kindness which seizes every opportunity to express itself near or far can be unfailingly counted on to heal all manner of wounds, to revive the most broken of spirit.

In Deuteronomy we read, "He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye." Is the individual prepared to put into daily practical expression the love which in its picturesque symbolism is set forth in these verses? It would seem that so often, whether carelessly or deliberately, men, rather than seeking to deliver, actually provide, if not desert lands and howling wildernesses, for each other, yet something that is not very much more pleasant. And so far from holding their companions, acquaintances, or fellow workers as the apple of their eye, they will often take great satisfaction in criticizing and in exposing them to the condemnation and criticism of others

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Lecture in The Mother Church
February 27, 1943

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