Keep on singing

Though ongoing stay-at-home orders may limit our activities, lockdowns can’t stop us from listening for divine inspiration that nurtures productivity, joy, and healing.

In an effort to help stop the spread of the coronavirus where I live, residents have been instructed to stay home, cancel family gatherings, and not travel or visit others. It’s been a disheartening decree for many to hear, because it’s a repeat of a shutdown we experienced months ago and hoped would never happen again.

But through Christian Science, I’ve found a spiritual perspective that can keep our thought in a good place no matter where our body happens to be. As children of God, we have spiritual consciousness that can never be locked down or isolated by physical circumstances. The source of this spiritual consciousness is the divine Mind, God, not matter. Therefore our thought is always free to soar and sing with inspirations of divine Truth and Love no matter how confining physical conditions may be. 

For instance, consider what happened to two biblical apostles, Paul and Silas, when they were thrown into prison for preaching the gospel (see Acts 16:22–26). To ensure they did not escape, the jailers cast the two into the inner dungeon and locked their feet in stocks. A true lockdown!

However, Paul and Silas did not allow their thinking to be imprisoned. They prayed and sang hymns of praise to God. They kept their thought in a state of spiritual uplift inspired by the omnipotence and omnipresence of their Maker. Their prayers were so sincere and heartfelt that the divine power behind them shook the foundations of the prison—literally. An earthquake swung the prison doors open and released the shackles holding Paul and Silas captive. They were free to go.

This story is inspiring because despite the dismal physical circumstances Paul and Silas faced, they did not become despondent and depressed. They understood something of the spiritual reality Jesus taught and demonstrated, in which God, good, alone is in control. And the physical condition imprisoning them dissolved.

Today, in obedience to government authorities, who are doing their best and need our prayers and support, we may find ourselves staying home more than usual, and working or studying alone. But our thinking can still soar and sing with God. Since we are God’s offspring, our identity is fundamentally spiritual. Our true, spiritual consciousness is in God—never confined by stay-at-home orders. We are always free to take in God’s healing inspiration, which transcends physical circumstances.

Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer of Christian Science, tells us how to stay free: “The enslavement of man is not legitimate. It will cease when man enters into his heritage of freedom, his God-given dominion over the material senses” (p. 228). If feeling confined, we can affirm our “heritage of freedom” with God, which enables us to realize that nothing can isolate us from inspiration and joy. We do this through our spiritual sense, the ability to know God’s presence and feel divine buoyancy, delight, and joy. Everyone has it.

We don’t need to dread or be enslaved by feelings of isolation and loneliness. We have a God-given ability to put them off with an understanding that we are at one with God, Spirit, and this relation to God can never be held back. Life in God is boundless, free, limitless, inspired. It’s our native state and heritage from God. 

This realization empowers us to keep singing and praising God, to keep our lives active and productive, even when things get tough. Stay-at-home orders do not require confining our thinking. We are always free to learn, discover, explore, reason, and gain fresh views of reality that transcend the physical. And this has a comforting, healing impact.

With God, there are no shutdowns or lockdowns. There is the never-ending freedom of Mind to celebrate and enjoy, to express and experience. Thought is always free to soar and sing in the heights of heaven with unfettered wing and ever-ascending views.

Whatever rules for social distancing you may be facing, above all, claim your heritage of freedom, and keep on singing!

Originally published in The Christian Science Monitor’s Christian Science Perspective column, December 14, 2020.

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