The selection of mourners for a state of blessedness seems a strange choice. Why, then, in his hillside sermon did Christ Jesus declare (Matt. 5:4), "Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted"? Giving clearer insight into the meaning of this utterance, on page 79 of "Retrospection and Introspection" Mary Baker Eddy writes, "We glean spiritual harvests from our own material losses."

How true it is that, unwelcome as they may be, tribulations, mental anguish, or physical deprivations oftentimes bring the sufferer to the verge of heaven. They can advance human thought to the point of willingness to part with the false sense of life in matter, which brought much misery and loss. From this stirring experience rich fruitage will be reaped as human sense, through the understanding of Christian Science, abandons the illusory concepts of mortal existence for the spiritual consciousness of man as God's immortal reflection. Thus the promise, "They shall be comforted," applies to all who enter into this diviner sense of Spirit as infinite, matter as nought, and the only true selfhood as God's wholly spiritual manifestation.

An instance of this exchange of gloom for glory was presented by Christ Jesus in Jerusalem during his last supper with his disciples. Shadows of separation and suggestions of betrayal and death hung over them. Yet how beautifully the comforting Christ-idea met the human need! Tenderly the Way-shower sought to reassure with the immortal truth of being not only his own disciples, but humanity as a whole. Rejecting as unreal the belief of life and intelligence apart from God, he knew that for man, created by Spirit, God, there can be no mortal existence, no parting from Life, no pain in imaging forth the eternal harmony of Soul. And so it came to pass that Jesus demonstrated the unreality of evil and its powerlessness to persecute, arraign, or injure one iota of man's true identity in God's own likeness.

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August 22, 1953

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