Graduating to Adult of God by Rev. Christine Emmerling 6/26/22 (text)
“Graduating to Adult of God”
by Rev. Christine 6/26/2022
June is traditionally known for having graduations. Thus, my talk today is about graduating from a child to being an adult in our relationship with God. The Bible teaches us about being a child of God. Even Jesus the Christ says to enter heaven to be as little children. When I think of a child, I think of innocently loving, trusting, being curious, open minded, imaginative, and teachable.
Then the Old Testament talks about being God’s child is to be obedient and fearful of being punished by God. Such as in the Book of Genesis, the story of Adam and Eve.
From the Old Testament Psalm 119, King David wrote, “Give me understanding that I may observe the law.” A great deal is heard of the Law, but many people lack a definite understanding of what it really means. Briefly, the Law is this; there is an unbreakable sequence of cause and effect throughout the universe. This sequence is never broken, and therefore there is no such thing as favoritism, special providences, hard cases, or anything of that sort.
As we sow, we reap. Every action result in certain consequences, and these consequences come to us as the result of that action. This is the law, and once we understand it, we have taken the first great step on the road to freedom. We then understand that if we do not desire certain consequences to come into our lives, we must not set them going by taking the corresponding action. If we do not want the goods delivered, we must not order them.
In the past, it was only the more advanced souls, the great Initiates, who were able to grasp this principle. In this day and age of general education, the average person understands that if the electric light will not work, it is simply because the laws of electricity have been transgressed. And for the same reason also knows that as soon as the law has been fulfilled then nothing whatever can prevent the electric light from turning on.
Now a person of childish ways may take it personally by a belief in some mysterious power that has it out for them, the universe is against them, or they’re being punished. The childish view of the world sees itself as disconnected from the results. What is going on in their world experience has nothing to do with their thinking, speaking, attitudes, and actions. They may see themselves as victim to circumstance, and blame everyone and everything else for their problems, pain and suffering, and may even blame God.
A more mature person will look to the Law that has been broken and quickly remedy. For example, an electric light won’t work is because the law of electricity has been transgressed. We may first check to see if the light bulb needs replacing, or if the lamp needs to be plugged in to an electrical outlet. And if that doesn’t work, then check to see if the breaker switch is flipped off. When all else fails call the power company to see if there is a power outage which will remedy itself in due time.
Of course, at any point some people may digress to their childish ways to blaming someone for not changing the light bulb, leaving the lamp unplugged or overloading the circuit breakers. Then rants about the power company and may even extend to the government and God.
The point here is that all this negative energy, whether spoken, acted out or just thought about, is being sent out into the universe to come back in some form of like experience. In Divine Science we have this spiritual law of “like produces like.” This law of “Like produces like” is closely connected with “That which is born of Spirit is Spirit” to remind us that God is spirit, and therefore we are spiritual beings one with and in the nature of God.
The Bible represents our journey from Adam to Christ consciousness and tells of our unfolding understanding of our relationship to God. When we recall our childhood our first understanding of God is through a child’s eyes, and it's our parents. They are the ones that feed, care, teach, protect, and at times punish. This role of parent is transferred to this idea we call God.
Our childish minds cannot wrap around an invisible presence, intelligence, of unconditional love that provides everything we need, and is within us and all around us. So our first concept is a super person being separate from ourselves.
Just as Adam and Eve, and the prophets that followed, had a God as a separate being or entity. This God would provide for them, grant favors and also judge and punish, and even kill for them. It was a God made in their own image with human characteristics that also had superpowers.
Then Jesus said, “you see me, you see the Father” and “The Father within me does the works.” Now the relationship is much different. Christ Jesus had a holistic understanding of God as a Divine Presence being within him (mind, body, soul) and everywhere present. God lived and walked with him, his Father within is an all-loving living presence that he could draw upon for guidance, supply, heal and have command of the elements.
1st Corinthians 13:10-12 explains this as “But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now, we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. And now abides faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.” In some translations love is used in place of charity.
Many people think of God as some sort of Santa Clause that we go to with our list of desires to be fulfilled. Like a Santa Clause our requests may not be filled depending on if we have been good or bad, or Santa is just too busy.
Then there has been the practice in some religions that a lay person needs an interceptor - a go between. As if they have a direct line to God that we don’t have. We are told in John 14:12, “You too will do these works, and even greater works than these shall you do.”
Some people think there are only four basic stages of development which are based on a person’s age and body: baby, child, adult, and old age. Just because we’re a certain age it doesn’t mean we have developed mentally or emotionally according to that age. An adult person can still be emotionally a teenager. Meaning an adult age does not guarantee being an emotionally mature adult.
There is actually another stage of development. This is our spiritual maturity which is not necessarily tied to our time on earth. Some people never achieve spiritual maturity in this lifetime. While Jesus at age thirteen, speaking with the Rabbis, showed to be spiritually mature beyond his years.
Our first step in developing spiritual maturity is to understand that this is an inward journey. It is about our understanding of God, and our relationship to God. It is about developing an inner relationship with God through our own self. For it is through our own self that the voice of God speaks to us. This is the light that lightest every man that cometh into the world. This is conscience. This is unconditional love and compassion. This is intuition and inner knowing. This is the voice of the Christ self, the Holy Spirit, the voice of God - that still small voice within.
The problem is that people do not listen to this inner voice or do not follow this voice within our soul, and so we become as a house divided against itself which shows up in our relationships, finances, work, and health. Now the good thing is, that we get plenty of opportunity to learn, to choose differently and start over again.
Spiritual maturity requires the study of truth to redefine our beliefs, we discipline our thoughts and refine our emotions and actions. It is being grateful for everything in our life. It is taking time in silence as in prayer, contemplation, or meditation. Meaning to be in a quiet receptive mode of listening. Then to obey; meaning to follow our inner guidance - that still small voice to the best of our ability.
Its doing to others as we would have them do to us. To truly love one another including our self. When our relationship to God becomes in right order, then all our relationships become in right order.
Once we realize our oneness with the All, then we also realize that we are one with everyone else too. Even to all life, including all creatures, our mother earth and all the elements, and the entire universe. And, as our Statement of Beings reads, both visible and invisible.
It is being responsible for our thoughts and actions. Stop focusing on what other people are doing or not doing. No person can make us angry unless that anger is already within us. We stop blaming others for our actions, such as, “You make me angry,” “You made me do it” or “The devil made me do it.” We clean our inner household so that the emotional projections stop. The key here is self-responsibility.
Have you ever been slimed? I think of that child’s TV game show where the loser got covered with this icky slimy gook. We can also slime each other with our negative emotional energy, by projecting our fears and judgements onto others. To our own self be true. To know our self is crucial in developing spiritual maturity.
Once we become harmless with our thoughts, speech and deeds. Then it's about being helpful. It is to help without an agenda for personal gain. To just be present for others; letting our light so shine - truly being a clear vessel. We take action as inwardly guided, and to willingly share our gifts and time with others. We be what we want to see in the world.
Christ Jesus was a great example of being helpful. His mother told him that they needed more wine at the wedding celebration, and he created it out of water. He helped thousands of people that requested healing. Most importantly he taught thousands of people, and even today his teachings are helping us to know our true self, so that we too can do these works, and even greater works.
The following are guidelines by one of my favorite authors, John Randolf Price, from his book A Spiritual Philosophy for the New World. Within this book is the Sixty Day Non Human Diet, which is for shifting our consciousness from a human being to a spiritual being:
1. Declare your intention and make a commitment to your new way of being.
2. Begin each day with loving gratitude and surrender your will to God’s will.
3. Continue with your daily affairs but with a focus on spirituality rather than materiality, and all action taken in the world will be spirit directed.
4. Instead of praying for things and conditions, ponder the invisible Allness that is already yours within.
5. Contemplate the Truth that the activity of spirit is the eternal giving of the kingdom, and within the kingdom is the fulfillment of every need and desire.
6. Feel the action taking place. Affirm the good even before it manifests.
7. Keep the vision of the idea of the kingdom within you fully present in your consciousness. Think about it continuously throughout the day with great love.
In time, a shift in consciousness will take place, and we all will have graduated to the next level as an adult of God.