Even without any major trial in our lives, most of us find human existence to be a round of ups and downs. This impression runs deeper than simply the fluctuations of our personal moods. Light, sound, and electricity - fundamental composites of our world - are understood as waves, and the earth itself seems to hang on a framework of tides, cycles, and seasons. Theories of biorhythms, astrology, and economics try to analyze the constant fluctuation but offer little satisfaction for the deep longing within each of us for stability.
Can we find real stability in our present circumstances? A favorite hymn presents a hopeful standpoint:
In heavenly Love abiding,
No change my heart shall fear;
And safe is such confiding,
For nothing changes here. n1
n1 Christian Science Hymnal, No. 148.
The fact that life in God, divine Love, is changeless does not mean it's monotonous. We may think that spiritual existence is static; that peace means silence, and stability means the absence of movement. But these are material measurements, which cannot define the Christly presence of peace. The influence of divine Love in our lives is infinitely varied, perfectly adapted to the human need. As Christ Jesus said, when explaining the certainty of our Father's provision, ''What man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?'' n2
n2 Matthew 7:9.
Understanding the changeless nature of divine Love to care for the human need enabled Jesus to respond to the demands in his life with healing. As the very embodiment of the saving Christ, he had the sensitivity to recognize the human need and reply to it, whatever the circumstances of the moment.
The changeless plan of divine Love for man includes health and holiness, freedom from sickness and sin, as the Master taught and illustrated. Although at present this freedom is dimly perceived, the saving Christ, expressed so completely by Jesus, is still present today. Through our individual receptivity to the Christ, and our living of the Christ-spirit, we become more willing to accept God's perfect plan and better able to respond to each moment's need.
How can we better recognize the Christ operating in our lives? There are many aspects to this sober challenge. One of them is that we need to stop looking to circumstances for stability. This demand is indicated in Jesus' statement ''How hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!'' n3 How difficult it is to see the changeless quality of divine Love when trusting in material circumstances to provide it. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes: ''A realization of the shifting scenes of human happiness, and of the frailty of mortal anticipations, - such as first led me to the feet of Christian Science, - seems to be requisite at every stage of advancement.''
n3 Mark 10:24. n4
n4 Retrospection and introspection, p.81.
Confidence and security are not external; they are internal - within our consciousness and therefore within our present reach. They are qualities we express, not conditions we acquire. But as we do express these qualities, circumstances are inevitably harmonized.
Stability in its truest sense is spiritual and eternal. Do we think of eternity as unending time? Or rather, as unmeasured by time? Stability is a fundamental aspect of life in God, not an add-on feature. Real life, as the outcome of God, of divine Life itself, is altogether independent of the mortal measurement of time. Life is the continuous and consistent expression of God as Love, independent of the waves intrinsic to material concepts and systems.
As we grasp something of the spiritual nature of stability, we'll no longer try willfully to staple down ever-changing circumstances. Our ambition won't be to arrange home, job, education, and relationships neatly once and for all. Fear of change is healed through understanding that nothing fluctuates in the quality of God's love for man. Then we are less moved by volatile circumstances and better able to demonstrate good.
The spiritually-minded person takes delight in the full-time enterprise of acknowledging divine Life and Love as present here on earth and active through the Christ. He magnifies this fact mentally, cherishes it silently, and ratifies it in thought and action. This frame of mind, far from escapism or wishful thinking, better approaches the spiritual authority that enabled Jesus to walk on the waves of a turbulent sea - and to calm the sea altogether.
In today's waves - personal, familial, or worldwide - the Christ arouses within us a deeper sense of security. Our stability is always sure when found in Christ. DAILY BIBLE VERSE The Kingdon of God is within you. Luke 17:21