IN the course of our day we send out many messages. We speak with our family, call our friends, and write letters to business clients. We may even route a message over electronic mail via a computer or a fax machine. You could even say that we also send unspoken or unwritten messages. These messages are what we feel within our hearts. What is in our hearts is perhaps the most important message of all. If our relationships with others are not going as well as they could, we may need to search our hearts and discover what lies within our feelings about others.
What do I mean by heart? Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, gives a definition of the word heart, as used in the Bible, that I find helpful: ``Mortal feelings, motives, affections, joys, and sorrows.''1
By looking at our feelings, motives, and affections we can better understand what we think about others. Is our motive a desire for personal gain? Is it pride or revenge? Or are we motivated by unselfishness, humility, love? Are our affectionsdebased or pure? Is our disposition angry and impatient or temperate and considerate? Are our feelings self-centered or God-centered?
Selfishness does not make for sound business practices, strong family relationships, or warm friendships. It is a joy when we realize that this state of thought is not permanent. Our heart can be changed so that its message is no longer contradictory. ``Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.''2
How do we go about changing our heart? We begin by drawing nigh to God. Our desire to seek God, good, the one cause and creator of the universe and man, is our first step. It's also important that we begin to see that our real being is already and eternally inseparable from God; that we're not truly sinful mortals struggling with selfishness but are spiritual offspring of divine Love, feeling and expressing the power of that Love.
From this basis of spiritual understanding we can more readily let our motives and our actions be governed by Love, allow our feelings, thoughts, and deeds to be brought under God's government. The need is to follow the example of the Master, Christ Jesus, in thought and action; to reflect more fully the divinely derived love and purity exemplified by the Way-shower. Then the messages we send will express the healing love of God. They'll carry a tone of Christliness that uplifts and doesn't injure.
Our purity of heart will also serve as a natural protection from the impositions of materialistic thinking. Our integrity allows no opening for another's ill intent to enter and harm us. Thus when the Pharisees tried to trick Jesus into making a mistake so they could falsely accuse him, he was safe.
As our heart becomes a better communicator of good, we will communicate more effectively with the world around us. Mrs. Eddy writes: ``A radiant sunset, beautiful as blessings when they take their flight, dilates and kindles into rest. Thus will a life corrected illumine its own atmosphere with spiritual glow and understanding.''3 We will be welcomed and appreciated for sharing the good treasures of our heart.
1Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 587. 2James 4:8. 3Miscellaneous Writings, p. 356.
You can find more articles like this one in the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine. DAILY BIBLE VERSE: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Matthew 22:37-39