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Don't run on empty!

It's not a pleasant feeling to always ''run on empty.'' Not only is your gas tank continually low, but you tend to be short of other vital things. But we can do something about it! That is the beginning of every lasting change - hope for progress. Hope, in its truest sense, though, is more than wishful thinking, or even positive thinking. Hope is based on an understanding of God's love and constant provision for man.

On one occasion Christ Jesus spoke to a woman at a well. He told her, ''Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.'' n 1 The woman never needed to feel a sense of emptiness in her life. But there was a spiritual demand to be met.

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n1 John 4:13, 14.

What does it mean to not just ''get by'' each day, but to be in touch with the very source of all goodness? This is what the life of Christ Jesus shows us. We need to stop looking at matter and to matter for the all of our existence. To the degree that we begin to acknowledge God, Spirit, as the source, the only source, of our well-being, our dependence on either a limited or an abundant supply of matter lessens.

God, Love, sustains His creation. This is spiritual law. He is always pouring forth His love and supplying man's needs. This spiritual fact is the reason we have hope, the reason we are able to do good. For we are His offspring, as the Bible teaches.

And yet we seem to be limited mortals, frequently ''running on empty.'' As we begin, through some understanding of God, to lean a little more on Him and His goodness, a divine influence gradually replaces our fears. The healing Christ, the very power of divine Spirit, destroys in human consciousness what is unlike God, what is untrue. And we actually see greater evidence of God's goodness in our lives. The matter-based view is really a temptation to limit God.

The Bible reveals these facts to us. It also gives examples for our edification and encouragement. The Old Testament tells of a woman whose husband had died and her sons were going to be taken as bondmen to pay off the family's debts. She told the prophet Elisha her woes. The prophet turned her thought to see what of good she already possessed. We might say she was being forced to turn away from the view of herself as a limited mortal, operating completely outside God's goodness. She was being asked to see what God had given her.

Elisha was doing much more than asking the widow to see things ''half full'' instead of ''half empty.'' As one who had witnessed the translation of his teacher and friend Elijah, he well knew God's love and care. Even before the time of Christ Jesus, people were blessed by the eternal Christ, the power of God's goodness that dissolves limitation and fear in human thought and reveals divine Love's provision. As a result of Elisha's understanding of God, this woman experienced the harmonizing power of Christ. We read that the one thing the woman had, a bit of oil, increased so that she had enough to pay off her debt and support her two sons. n2

n2 See II Kings 4:1-7.

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Isn't this a beautiful lesson for us? We too, like the widow, can see what God has given us. When we have deep gratitude for Him, our tendency to want to depend on matter to solve our problems is rebuked. And, as Christ Jesus promised the woman at the well, we will be drinking of the Christly water - that which comes from divine Love eternally.

We really don't run on empty. God is supplying us right now with what we need. Leaning on Him, we find that the aspects in character that limit (whether fear, procrastination, the inability to say ''no,'' lack of order) can be destroyed by Christ, Truth. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, says: ''Never ask for to-morrow: it is enough that divine Love is an ever-present help; and if you wait, never doubting, you will have all you need every moment.''

n3 Miscellanous Writings, p. 307.

DAILY BIBLE VERSE I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word. Deal bountifully with thy servant, that I may live, and keep thy word. Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law. Psalms 119:16-18

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