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Facing down fear in a tough economy

A Christian Science perspective.

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The current economic situation is perplexing the entire globe, challenging business and political leaders everywhere to find solutions quickly.

While the economy appears to involve an exchange of products and services, this results from the expression and exchange of good ideas. Without good ideas, there is no economy. Fortunately, there is never a limit to the number of good ideas that can be expressed – and ultimately manifested as a strong economy.

Understanding the economy as an exchange of ideas is a great starting point to work from in contributing to stabilizing and strengthening the global economy.

Good ideas come from good clear thinking, and there is no clearer thinking than that which is aligned with God, the true divine Mind. Aligning our thoughts with God through prayer, we will find our consciousness flooded with good, useful, practical, and relevant ideas that, when put into practice, benefit humanity and help build the economy.

Mary Baker Eddy wrote in the Christian Science textbook, “Mind is the source of all movement, and there is no inertia to retard or check its perpetual and harmonious action” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 283). If Mind is the source of movement, and if what Mind creates is ideas, then true movement is really the flow of ideas. If we understand that God is good, and good alone, all ideas that come from God are good ideas, and nothing can truly interfere with their flow.

What then is the inertia that appears to prevent the flow of good ideas? Fear is certainly a form of inertia. When we let fear in, and resonate with it, it can darken and cloud our ability to think clearly. When we are fearful, we feel alone, cut off, helpless.

If you think about what you are afraid of, it is about “what if” scenarios – things that are yet to come. Fear is often foreboding, an anxiety about something that hasn’t happened yet. Fear takes our thinking away from the present and puts it into a hypothetical future. Consequently, fear is never productive, always retarding.

One of the best antidotes I’ve found for fear is gratitude. It does two things. First, it keeps our thinking in the now and helps us acknowledge the good already present in our experience. Second, it realigns our thinking with God; it’s a form of prayer. Regardless of what fear suggests, there is so much good right in front of us to recognize and be grateful for.

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Just the other day, while grocery shopping with my wife, I felt anxiety and fear about the economy and our family’s future. So as we went down the aisle, I immediately turned away from fear and started instead to feel grateful. I began to see all the wonderful products around me as the evidence of the good thinking of thousands of people. But it was more than just good thinking – I could see qualities of God that had been expressed in creating the products and in setting up the store. I saw intelligence, beauty, order, and usefulness expressed in the hundreds of products all around us. Right there in that grocery store I felt surrounded by the evidence of God’s goodness, manifested through humanity. Immediately the fear left my thinking. Gratitude had left no room for it. And I went about our shopping without the interference of fear.

Gratitude is not just positive, optimistic thinking – at least not when we are truly recognizing the evidence of God, Spirit, all around us. It’s so much more than just saying “thank you” for something; it’s acknowledging the presence of spiritual reality and goodness all around us. That brings comfort and realignment with God.

As we all work to find practical solutions to the economy on all levels, from world leaders to the circle of each individual, we can benefit from keeping our thought in alignment with divine Love. The Bible says, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (Prov. 4:23). Gratitude for the good already abundantly present frees our thinking from the grip of fear, and opens it to God’s infinite opportunities.

For a Korean translation of this article, see The Herald of Christian Science.


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