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The Christian disciple has trials and self-denials. This fact has been apparent down the centuries. A modern, fun-seeking society, feeling that self-denial means the killing of joyousness, may try as long as possible to avoid it. But this putting off the old man as Paul directed (see Col. 3:9, 10) and putting on the new is a demand of Christ, Truth, which cannot be postponed. Are we, then, really faced with a joyless prospect? It depends upon what joy means to us.
If joy is only an excited emotion, an exhibition of gaiety, its basis is liable to be fancied and fleeting. The loss of such a personal sense of joy can serve as a useful stepping-stone to the Christian's ultimate goal, the deeper joys of Spirit which are eternally manifested through man by divine Love. The Christian Scientist finds that the unfoldment in his life of these deeper joys continues without interruption in proportion as he understands man's indestructible relation to God, the creator of all and the creator of good only.
What really is joy? It is a state of thought that, personal sense notwithstanding, knows the power, presence, action, of good. The understanding of the perfection of God and man, as taught in Christian Science, and the willingness to be obedient to God's law, enable us to prove that in reality good sustains our health, thinking, capacities, life, relationships with others, and our world around us. This proof brings a deep inner joy. The consciousness of good, which leads to trust in God, good, is ever available. Actually it is the gift of God. And it changes the course of human events.
Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.
JOSEPH G. HEARD
Donalda von Poellnitz
The Water of Life
JEAN M. SNYDER
"Am I a God at hand?"
PAUL AGNEW RANDALL
Dating—on a Firm Foundation
PRISCILLA A. ALEXANDER
An Interview: with a Novelist
with contributions from Henrietta Buckmaster
Taking Our Stand
Helen Wood Bauman
"With God's help I can do it!"
Alan A. Aylwin
In 1916 a very good acquaintance of mine sent a package of...
My gratitude to Christian Science is beyond any words to express
Mary Elizabeth Machin
When a young girl, I was riding horseback on a barren hill one...
Beatrice Warren Dilcock
The study and practice of Christian Science constantly helps...
Lola Ann Frye with contributions from Elaine L. Frye
As a young girl I longed to have a religion that had proof of its...
Beryl R. Margetts
Signs of the Times
Frank Halliday Ferris