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Empowering Our Faith by Rev. Christine 12/10/2023

“Empowering Our Faith” by Rev. Christine 12/10/2023

Today my talk is about Empowering Our Faith. I thought it best to begin with the Webster dictionary definition of the word faith: “Faith is unquestioning belief that does not require proof or evidence. Complete trust, confidence or reliance.”

Where do you put your faith? There are many who would say “I only believe in what I can see with my own two eyes.” Yet our eyes can give us faulty information. Studies have shown that one must believe before actually seeing. When the Spaniards first sailed to North America, it is said that the Indians could not see their sailing ships in the horizon until a shaman could see, and only then the others could begin to see them. Sailing ships had not been part of their experience, and therefore beyond their perception.

What we can perceive is what we will see. There is a psychological ink blot test in which the patient will be asked what they see in this blot of ink. What will be seen is dependent upon a person’s past experience. If they were traumatized let’s say in the battle field, they may see an explosion. While a child may see melted ice cream. Some people may see an angel, dog or house. The mind will always try to make sense out of what it sees. When something so strange or different that just doesn’t fit in our normal world of events, the mind will make something up to fit, or the mind might just go blank by totally forgetting what had been experienced.

A common test is to have a group of people witness an event, and then ask each one what they saw. The results will be as different as the number of people being asked.

Dr. Wayne Dyer once coined the phrase “Believing is seeing.” There is a whole other world that is unseen to the naked eye. Such as, energy or the air we breathe. Yet it exists. Those with a natural gift or trained eye can see auras around people, animals, plant life and objects. There is said to be seven energetic layers to our body. The body we actually see is just one of those layers. Behind all manifestation there is this spiritual substance or energy.

What about our thoughts? How real are they? Each thought has an energy of its own, and is the foundation of manifestation and experience. Faith is this invisible power that is actually a God given inherited power that we all have. Faith is our ability to create something out of the seeming nothingness.

Have you ever watched a baby learning to turn over? They will try rocking itself over and over until they make it. Then they try to crawl just getting up on their knees and then rocking itself until propelling itself forward, or sometimes backwards. Then as the strength is built, the baby is able to start moving the legs in coordination with the hands and crawling throughout the house.

The next big step to pull itself up to standing, and then letting go testing the waters so to speak. They are so proud with each step in progress all working towards taking that big first step in walking. The baby had faith from the point when it couldn’t even turn over that it would be walking. Each point in progress was building the strength and faith to continue on. Never doubting regardless the number of times the infant may have fallen. Can you imagine an infant falling and just never getting up again? No!

What is it that we are putting our faith in today, this very moment? Yes, I trust and have the faith to take my next breath, knowing there is air to breathe. We are exercising our faith with every breath we take. Our mind is easily receptive to suggestion, and we are told there are germs in the air that can make us sick, and give us the flu. We put our faith in medicine, in the driver that will follow the laws of the road. We have our negative mind talk. It takes just as much faith to believe in the positive and good as it does the negative and bad. Ask yourself, where am I investing my faith?

In the Bible there are many stories about people and their faith. Abraham is known for his obedience and faith. First we listen, we get direction, and then it is up to us to decide to follow and do, or to do nothing or something else. Abraham trusted his inner guidance, and in faith moved his family to another land. He even surrendered his most treasured son, Isaac. Abraham believed he was being asked to sacrifice his son. He even took him to the spot and prepared to follow through. When he looked up and saw a ram, he realized his willingness to give up his most precious possession was all that was required. When Abraham looked up, this symbolized him having a new realization about God and his message.

Peter, Jesus’ disciple, was known for his faith. Peter was the first to recognize the Christ consciousness that Jesus was expressing and demonstrating in his works. Then when Jesus walked upon the water, Peter stepped off the boat and too walked upon the water, remembering the promise, knowing that he too could do these works. When the wind came up and fear came over Peter his faith wavered and he began to sink. And then, his faith in the Christ lifted him up again.

The world is the mirror magnifying are beliefs about our self and our world. What we are consciously or unconsciously believing in is being magnified or manifested in our world. Our thoughts and beliefs become our faith, and results in our world of experience.

Matt. 9:22 Jesus said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly the woman was made well.” In Matt. 17:20 Jesus says, “I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”

Affirmations are a powerful tool to changing our life by reconditioning our beliefs and thought patterns. Affirmations remind us of what is already true. They strengthen our faith in Truth. Yet, while saying something like “God is all and God is Good,” while and at the same time feeling separated from God and our good, feeling fear, anger or doubt then the affirmation is cancelled out by our gut feeling.

The feeling must match the thought or the belief must match the desire. Until the faith is built affirmations need to be persistently practiced. Continue with the affirmation until the feeling matches, and there is a conviction of YES! Words in themself are not the magic, but it is the truth that holds the power to transform.

We are reminded in Mark 11:24 Jesus said, “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Knowing before you can see it, to truly feel and know it is already done. This is about having gratitude for what is to come. We have gratitude for what we have received, but now for what is to come as though we have already received. This is exercising our faith.

Matt. 18:19 Jesus said, Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. Metaphysically we’re talking about aspects of our mind being in agreement and is then done accordingly. This means our conscious and subconscious mind are to be in agreement (our conscious thoughts and stored beliefs).

In Glenn Clark’s book “I Will Lift Up Mine Eyes,” explains faith as a turning point to answered prayer. He describes a vine as a ladder having eight rungs or steps beginning at the first step we have “opinion”; step two is “conception”; step three is “belief”; the fourth step is “trust”; the fifth is “faith”; sixth is “conviction”; seventh is “realization”; the eighth step is “knowing” - it’s absolute knowing.

Early in childhood we turn our sensations and perceptions into opinions. Opinion, after being carefully examined and thought upon, becomes a conception. As the conception grows firmer and clearer in our mind we accept it as a belief.

Next comes trust. A man can believe a parachute will open, and still not have the trust to jump from an airplane. When he arrives at trust, he has reached the stage where thinking begins to be converted into action. When one trusts his belief, he is at the threshold of true faith. When faith becomes settled and permanent we call if conviction. Then dawns realization and we begin to function through the higher dimensions of creation.

Finally we reach the state of absolute knowing. We step out upon the promises of God with the same assurance that we take our next breath. We take our next step, we don’t stop and question or doubt that there will be ground to walk on. We don’t think about it, or have to analyze the body’s processes. There is no thought, anymore than we think about how to make our heart beat. This is Knowing! Faith is like a muscle that needs to be exercised to build strength, otherwise it gets weak and lazy, and we fall down the rungs of our ladder.

We’re going to close with an exercise based on Charles Fillmore’s work in the “Twelve Powers of Man,” he associated the power of faith to the Pineal gland. The Pineal gland opens the mind of man to spiritual faith. By merely affirming the activity of this superpower will quicken it in consciousness.

The Pineal gland is in the center top portion of the head. Focus your attention now to this spot in your head, and see it with your inner eye as a glowing light. “The Christ of God is awakened in me. Christ in me is quickening my faculty of Faith. I Am grateful that the Christ in me is awakened and quickening my faculty of Faith.” Let us say it again. Breathe into the pineal gland with our focus on it. Now with our inner eye see our faculty of faith glowing shining brightly.

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