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Handling Change

CHANGE is taking place all the time. But maybe we don't always like change. If we don't have an intelligent attitude toward change, however, we can end up opposing everything and anything. It makes sense, then, to consider how we should handle changes in our lives and in our world. One effective way is to pray, and to continue praying. Prayer makes us more resilient, more adaptable, better able to maintain our inner peace no matter what's going on around us.

Prayer helps us understand that there is one God, one divine Spirit. Spirit, God, created the universe, including man, in Spirit's own likeness. Reality is spiritual. Man's true identity is spiritual. So your true identity, and mine, and everyone's, is as changeless, spiritually, as God is changeless. As we understand and affirm these spiritual facts, our fears lessen. We find ourselves better equipped to meet expected and unexpected changes.

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The Bible has many examples. Daniel, for instance, a captive exile, rose to be prominent in the king's court. Then he was envied, conspired against, and sentenced to be thrown into a den of lions. After a night with the lions he was released, unharmed, totally untouched by the whole affair. His words to the king were ``My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt.''

Few of us are likely to be taken suddenly from the comfort of a king's palace and pitched into a lions' den, but there's much we can learn from Daniel's way of handling the situation. He had no fear of the lions, and no resentment toward anyone. He was the same Daniel -- the same kindly, Godlike individual -- whether he was in the king's palace or in the lions' den. How did he maintain his poise? The Bible tells us that Daniel made a regular practice of praying to God. He trained himself spiritually.

We can do the same. Through daily prayer, you and I can cultivate a state of consciousness that remains unchanged spiritually despite all kinds of upheavals on the human scene.

And if we want to know how to pray, we have only to turn to the Bible for guidance, to the place in Matthew where Christ Jesus' disciples asked their great Teacher how they should pray. Jesus, in response, taught them the prayer we know today as the Lord's Prayer. We can pray with the Lord's Prayer. The Lord's Prayer, with its spiritual interpretation, can also be found in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. It appears at the end of the first chapter, which is entitled ``Prayer.''

And there's another prayer used daily by Christian Scientists. It's in a small book, the Manual of The Mother Church, written by Mrs. Eddy. Under the heading ``Daily Prayer'' we read: ``It shall be the duty of every member of this Church to pray each day: `Thy kingdom come;' let the reign of divine Truth, Life, and Love be established in me, and rule out of me all sin; and may Thy Word enrich the affections of all mankind, and govern them!''

That prayer is not exclusive to Christian Scientists. Anyone can use it. We can all unite in it. There is one God, one all-loving heavenly Father. We are all God's children, loved equally.

We can see that to pray we need to start with God. Then, in humility, we acknowledge our own and everyone else's spiritual relationship to God. When we pray with the love of God in our hearts, we are led in right ways, guarded, protected, liberated, wherever we may be, in whatever circumstances. And we help and bless others also. Through prayer, and with love, we can handle change in our lives with confidence.

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