A Christian Science perspective on daily life.
A woman in London complained to her mother that the young professionals she was meeting were all working such long hours in the City, the financial sector, that they never had time to develop meaningful relationships. She's not alone – nor is London the only place where this cry for companionship is heard.
Her mother suggested trying harder to appreciate the sweetness in her life. Unlike a bee or a hummingbird, she didn't have to beat her wings many times a minute in order to make progress or gain happiness. All she needed to do was take a few moments each day to mentally express gratitude to God for all the blessings that were hers to enjoy right then. They didn't need to be great, earthshaking things – even something as small as a bee or a hummingbird would be fine.
Whether you're lonely in London or depressed in Detroit, the healing power of gratitude cannot be underestimated. Gratitude makes such a significant difference to our days. Mary Baker Eddy, who established this newspaper, put it this way: "Are we really grateful for the good already received? Then we shall avail ourselves of the blessings we have, and thus be fitted to receive more" ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," p. 3).
In other words, being actively grateful opens the way to more good. Gratitude may take form as actually expressing thanks for our work and other activities, and for people, opportunities, and things that come our way. Or we may be silently grateful to God for absolutely everything. Developing this attitude toward life and putting it into practice daily brings healing results.
When we practice gratitude, we open our own hearts to the good God is giving us. Opening our eyes to God's direction also reveals solutions to problems. It changes challenges into blessings because we learn to turn away from the trouble and to trust that God is right there with us. Under the light of divine Love's care for us, only good can enter our experience. Even in the midst of lack and disorder, this spiritual law will bring results. Gratitude will bring forth good; it will bless us and all that we care about.
A Bible verse, as translated in the Amplified Bible, declares: "Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will]" (I Thess. 5:18).
The young woman spoken of earlier took her mother's advice about gratitude to heart and put it into practice. Two days after that conversation, the mother had what she called "a chirpy call" from her daughter. The young woman told her that when she started to be grateful for everything good she experienced – however small – it changed not just her life but others' lives too. In just that short time, many opportunities had opened up for her and for her work colleagues also.
So much depends on how we look at things that it's important to get the right view, which is the spiritual view. The only will of God for us is always good – that we should always have everything we need, at all times, wherever we may be. Gratitude opens us to receive the good that is already coming to us from God. This includes companionship and contentment. When we limit ourselves to a material outlook and base our hopes on matter, we are relying on something that is totally finite and can never show us the infinite possibilities of spiritual being. Genuine happiness comes from looking above and beyond the material and into the inexhaustible resources of divine Principle, Love. When we practice daily gratitude, we'll find daily proof of the power and goodness of Love maintaining and sustaining us.