A Child-like Faith and a Cheerful Heart
"Always be full of joy in the Lord ... Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your
needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.
If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which
is far more wonderful than the human mind can under-
stand." - Philipians 4:4-7 (Living Bible)
Certainly, one may reject Paul's teaching in that it is impossible to be joyful, thankful, and peaceful at all times. You may argue that it is appropriate to express gratitude when things are going great (and relatively easy to do), but it's senseless when experiencing lack or troubled times.
But, my friend, to hold such a view implies that thanksgiving is merely a means of informing God that He has done a good job, and properly done only if it follows such a blessing.
Unity teaches that our consciousness determines how we shall respond to any given circumstance we face in life. If we hold a grudging, resentful attitude, we won't be able to see the good. But if we maintain a child-like faith and a cheerful heart, we shall perceive each situation from a higher perspective and claim the good that is in it. And indeed, we can change our consciousness and therein change our life experience.
How can we achieve this? By believing that thankfulness is a way of living -- and by living that belief. We can develop a grateful consciousness by blessing and praising everything in our universe, be it large or small, be it attractive or unattractive.
Many years ago a child just learning to talk said the words "dank-u" after each block she handed to me. At first I thought it rather strange, but was this not a child-like faith and a cheerful heart, thankful for the experience of giving?
I shall never forget the waitress who served my meal, adding the words, "Thank you". When she returned with coffee, she filled my cup, saying "Thank you". Was this not the demonstration of a child-like faith and a cheerful heart who appreciated the opportunity for serving?
When one prays regularly, expressing gratitude for God's help in every need, then worry dissolves and peace of mind ensues.
Consider, amid the confrontations and stresses of life, that appreciation awakens deep within us a living trust that knows the truth which sets us free from worry and fear ... and fills us with the peace that passes all human understanding.
Authored by Reverend Virgil Brewer at Unity Chapel
July 1, 2005