No impasse in Mind

Among one’s first lessons in driving school is to lift the eyes from the end of the hood of the car in order to have a wider and broader perspective of the road. The drive is then smoother and steadier, eliminating unnecessary braking, because the objects you encounter along the way no longer appear as scary, looming obstacles.

In the Bible, lifting one’s eyes often signifies seeking God and a higher, divine view of present good. Christ Jesus explained, “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest” (John 4:35). From God’s perspective, there are never any obstacles to unfolding good. God’s goodness is present and perpetual.

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Once, when caught in a legal muddle, I found that the longer it went on, the more tempting it was to focus on what wasn’t going right. Then the case came to a complete impasse. During a long trip away, I took a break from the problem in order to nurture my relationship with God as the Mind—or intelligence—of us all. For six weeks, I contemplated in prayer and spiritual study what it means for God to be everyone’s divine Mind—our only true Mind—the infinite source of all good and right ideas.

I saw that in this Mind’s unlimited and perfect view, nothing and no one is ever actually stuck. Mind’s good ideas flow in a continual stream of unrestricted good. Mind knows only good and reveals good throughout its creation. I saw that my life, and everyone’s, expresses the flow of Mind’s intelligence, which knows no delays or stopping. I understood that as the spiritual manifestation of perfect Mind, each of us is capable of expressing intelligence as well as humility, selflessness, freedom from fear, and grace.

Upon returning from this trip, I no longer saw the others in the case as stubborn, self-interested, limited. Looking from Mind’s perspective, I saw each one’s inherent spirituality and receptivity to good. I knew that the answer to the impasse had to be right at hand. And so it was. Within a week, the legal issue completely and happily resolved. Everyone involved in the case acknowledged that the journey to the simple and just solution had blessed us along the way.

No one likes to feel stuck. On those occasions when delay, intractability, resistance, friction, or some other obstacle threatens to slow or stop progress, it might be a good time to ask if our sights are set too low. Actually, even in the stickiest of stuck places, the perfect solution is already at hand. We simply have to “lift up [our] eyes”—our thought—by seeking out Mind’s perspective to discover the perfect harvest of good right in front of us.

The Bible tells of a man named Balaam, who was asked by a king to come with him and his men and to “curse” the children of Israel (see Numbers 22–24). Although Balaam sought God’s guidance, he disobeyed God’s instructions and went with the men.

I saw that in this Mind’s unlimited and perfect view, nothing and no one is ever actually stuck. 

Even the best intentions can be derailed if personal will or desire is allowed to get in the way. Listening in prayer for what Mind sees and says—and then being obedient—broadens vision, purifies motives, improves character, and breaks through logjams.

Balaam’s journey came to an abrupt halt when his donkey suddenly bolted into a field. Balaam reacted with anger to what seemed like the donkey’s capriciousness, striking the donkey to try to force it back onto the road. The donkey was insubordinate two more times, and Balaam continued to lash out in anger. 

Striking out with anger or frustration at whatever circumstance or individual we feel is getting in our way is never helpful and would hide the useful role of each idea of God. Genuinely seeking and following Mind’s lead never results in anger or exasperation, which would keep us from discerning the perpetual unfolding of good. But when we lift our focus above fear, reaction, and condemnation and turn to perfect Mind, we can expect to find a blessing, and a way forward.

That’s what happened with Balaam. It turns out the donkey wasn’t being stubborn or impulsive at all. It simply saw what Balaam, so intent on pursuing his way, had missed. In the middle of the road stood an angel. Christian Science has helped me understand that in the Bible, angels often represent inspired ideas from God. When Balaam finally perceived the angel’s presence, he bowed his head before it and fell face down on the ground. Humbled, Balaam was finally obedient to Mind’s instruction that “only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that thou shalt speak.” Balaam and his donkey proceeded, and we find out that God’s will was that Balaam bless the Israelites, not curse them—and this is exactly what he did.

The Discoverer of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote, “Mind is the source of all movement, and there is no inertia to retard or check its perpetual and harmonious action” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 283). In the infinite round of Mind’s unfolding goodness, nothing is ever really stuck. Mind’s angels, the right ideas of God’s goodness, accompany us on the path. Turning to perfect Mind to guide us, we can see our way above and beyond any obstacle, and find the blessing of infinite good that Mind, God, has placed right before our eyes. 

Michelle Boccanfuso Nanouche
Guest Editorial Writer

Bible Lens
Bible Lens—November 16–22, 2020
November 16, 2020

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