Brought up in traditional Christianity, I was taught that as human beings, we are sinners who must keep apologising for our mistakes, with Jesus as the only son of God. Is this a message you heard, or continue to relate to?
Those of you who have been reading these weekly thoughts, know that I rejected church as a child, as I rejected this ethos. Even as a teenager, I believed we are all beloved of God, all children of God and here to somehow find God in our personal experience. I moved into the practice of meditation, although struggled to keep my mind silent and still, let alone sitting cross-legged on the floor for longer than five minutes!
When I came into Unity, messages like the one today were not just mind and heart-opening, they shifted me entirely. Here at last was an organisation that was expanding my thinking and experience - opening me into a way of life and living that would 'set me free'. Set me free from what? From my little self.
I invite you this week, to use this affirmation as an 'I am' statement: I am the vehicle through which God-awareness flows.
Write it down in your journal and spend a few minutes each day writing your thoughts that flow from this one. They could be anything from, 'no way is this true' to the deep realisation that Jesus taught us all: 'The father and I are one'. Just sit, keep writing and see what comes forth from within you.
Make this personal and real for you. Jesus came to show us the way for us to have our own personal experience of God - and to know, as author and Unity minister Eric Butterworth wrote: Within every person is the unborn possibility of limitless growth, and ours is the privilege of giving birth to it. (Celebrate Yourself)
In his letter to the Colossians Paul wrote it this way: ... the mystery hidden for ages and generations... which is Christ in you, the hope of glory (1:26,27)
Rev. Kimerie Mapletoft,
Director of Silent Unity and Daily Word UK
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As we say so often in Unity, prayer is the cornerstone of our teachings and practices, because prayer changes us.
Why? Perhaps because, as Unity minister and author Eric Butterworth wrote, “Prayer in Unity is designed to help us discover God’s presence. …. As we get a greater perception of our relation to the universe, there is no one to pray to … only a universal flow to get into; a spiritual energy to pray from ... The science of prayer is not a technique for getting into God, or for getting God into us. It is the awareness of our true self in its largest possible context and the key to changing things by altering our self-limiting attitudes.” (The Universe is Calling Ch. 1)
Take a moment to reflect on this quote, for there is a lot here. Was this something that was taught to you as a child? Certainly, I did not experience prayer this way, which was probably why prayer did not work for me, until I re-discovered Unity.
Like me, I think many people were taught to pray to a God-presence outside themselves, begging for things to be different and to get God’s attention; praying from a sense of unworthiness and lack. This is perhaps why so many in the world today do not pray until they are desperate and feel they have nowhere else to turn. Not as powerful, loving or connecting an experience as prayer can be.
Of course, as children, we take onboard the self-limiting beliefs of our parents, guardians and teachers, and they the same before them. As children we are like sponges, for without even realising it we soak up and take on the beliefs and demands of our community and culture, to fit in and stay safe. How understandable this is. Yet as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 13: 11-12, “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”
We are called to know ourselves as God knows us – not as someone unworthy, but as made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26).
Prayer in Unity, along with meditation, is the way we can deeply access God-within and our True Self.
Does this speak to you personally? If this sounds interesting and you would like to know more, join us on Zoom to share:
Prayer changes us – let yourself be changed to release the divine flow, the Christ energy within you.
Do you relate to this message in any way?
I know that at times I have felt overwhelmed, when it seemed everything was changing. Yet I have also recognised the call to come higher; to open into and connect with the God-energy, which is greater than me, yet is always here. This focusing on God as my life, love, wisdom and peace, has been my comfort, joy and peace.
How do we make the connection that Myrtle writes? We stop, turn our attention away from the distractions or problems of the world, to pray words of love and support and then listen to the still, small voice within, before taking new action and thinking new thoughts. Emmett Fox called this The Golden Key.
Prayer is the heart of Unity. This month, you can join us in Unity and be part of our annual World Day of Prayer, Thursday 8th September, when tens of thousands of people around the world will be joining in conscious, connected prayer.
Again, we turn to Myrtle Fillmore who wrote (Healing Letters P35),
“Prayer, as Jesus Christ understood and used it, is communion with God; the communion of the child with his Father; the splendid confidential talks of the son with the Father.
This communion is an attitude of heart and mind that lifts the individual into a wonderful sense of oneness with God, who is Spirit, the source of every good and perfect thing, and the substance that supplies all the child’s needs, social needs, mental needs, physical needs, or needs of a financial nature. Positive declaration of the truth of one’s unity with God sets up a new current of thought power, which delivers one from the old beliefs and their depression. And when the soul is lifted up and becomes positive, the body and the affairs are readily healed.”
Prayer, through the letting go of old thoughts, doubts or fears, followed by claiming and knowing our good, are the tools we use to support us in our life as we move from the old to the new – a larger, brighter, more joyful life-experience, for ourselves and everyone around us.
Prayer changes us
As we say in Unity, prayer changes us. Further, by consciously choosing to connect with others at the same time and in the same way, through Unity’s World Day of Prayer, we are open to experience the deeper changes and good we seek in our world.
At this time on our planet, there is a profound call for us to awaken into our true Christ identity. To live more deeply, the light and truth we are, and hereby helping others do the same. It is together that we awaken; together that we experience love and joy; together we experience peace.
So join us for our annual World Day of Prayer and share in the experience of moving from one room, into a lighter, larger place of being.
Unity in the UK