UNITY OF VANCOUVER
3814 FRANKLIN ST. VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON 98660 360-696-0996
Asking Questions, Finding Answers, Manifesting Your Dreams
Reverend Bernadette Voorhees
August 8, 2021
All Rights Reserved
I invite you to close your eyes and ears to every outer circumstance and to get comfortable in your quiet place of being alone with God. Relax every muscle and let the words of Psalm 115:1 occupy the space of your mind. “Not for us, O Lord, not for us, but to give Your name glory, for the sake of Your steadfast love and faithfulness.” Hear the words echo in your mind until you feel that you are the writer of these words and that they are your personal prayer.
There is a unity in the universe; you are a part of that unity and in your oneness with God, you are that unity. In an attitude of wonder and love contemplate the words. “Not for us O Lord, not for us, but to give Your name glory, for the sake of Your steadfast love and faithfulness.”
To the ancient Hebrews, ‘name’ meant ‘nature’ so ‘giving glory to God’s nature’, is the activity of giving thanks for God’s love and compassion so intensely, so deeply and so profoundly that you become consumed with the fire of love. Your human self dissolves into the Divine and you become Divine love made manifest and a transmitter of Divine Love. Divine Love flows through you and radiates out into your world enfolding everyone and everything, the seemingly good and the seemingly bad into a unity with God. As the consciousness of God’s absolute, unconditional love, and wisdom, you perceive all the forms of life on earth from a very high vantage point so that looking down at earth is like looking down at your own feet. You are aware of the sore places, the weary places, the complaints, and conflicts among humans and yet you see beyond all the differences, fears, and strife and from the unity of your True self with God and from your (w)holiness, forgive all parties to the incidents that normally would separate us, including your own human self and human judgment. Do this now as you listen to the words of the hymn, “Rock of Ages” as they are in our Unity Hymnal.
Rock of ages, Truth divine, Strong foundation, ever mine;
Safe, secure, I here remain, In the peace He doth ordain;
Living ever in the light, Pure and perfect in God’s sight.
On the rock of Truth, I stand Destiny at my command.
Filled with peace and power of God, Boundless good, eternal love,
Safe with Truth, so firm and strong, Praising in triumphant song.
For the asking I attain every height in Truth’s domain,
Every wish within my heart; For no blessing can depart.
All of good is ever mine, On the rock of Truth divine.
As we pray together in this moment, we say with the Psalmist who wrote Psalm 115:1, “Not for us, O Lord, not for us, but to give Your name glory, for the sake of Your steadfast love and faithfulness.” Use each one of us to bring to pass Your Kingdom on Earth as it is in Heaven and the unlimited good you want to give us all. Let us give thanks for Unity of Vancouver, each other and the illuminating teachings of Jesus Christ who said, “You shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free.” Amen.
ASKING QUESTIONS, FINDING ANSWERS, MANIFESTING your dreams at any age
Today we are talking about building a prosperity consciousness that will enable you to manifest your dreams. For many people, the first task in building a consciousness of abundance is to take some time apart and look inward to rediscover and dust off our dreams. There is a great saying that goes along with this thinking in Unity: “Today I will attempt something that would be absolutely impossible if God were not in it.” Many people give up on their dreams. The say, “It is just too hard to make my dreams happen.” If you listen to that phrase, you realize that a person saying that really doesn’t believe that they are working with God as their partner. They believe they are doing it all alone. Researchers tell us that people who work toward their dreams often give up when they are 90% of the way there. That said, we can learn to maintain the energy needed to go that last seemingly impossible 10% of the way to the success that is guaranteed because it is God working in us, through us, as us and around us to “Give us the Kingdom (Itself) on Earth as it is in Heaven.” God is the dream, the dreamer, and the liver of the dream.
The human condition of man in a nutshell is: We are 3-fold or 3-dimensional beings: Spirit, mind, and body, three-forms of the same God stuff just like ice, water and steam are 3 forms of H2O. We often live believing that we’re only mental and physical beings, and the result is lack because we aren’t expressing our full 3-fold nature. Since we are limited in our expression (by our conditioning) we naturally experience divine discontent and, seek ways to break free from what we think is holding us back or keeping us from feeling secure. If we continue on believing we’re just mental and physical beings, we’ll continue to search only in the outer for the solutions, security, and freedom, which only comes from within. It is the living of the Truth of our 3-dimensional nature that sets us free to live our dreams. God as Life is always calling us to evolve and wake up to the awareness that we are more than just bodies with a human mind. We are embodied Spirit.
One of the most exciting things for me in life is to see someone realize (make real or manifest) their dreams. Jesus obviously felt like this too. In Luke 1:37, He is quoted as saying, "Dare to do anything for nothing is impossible with God.” When we give up on our dreams we may still say, “I believe in God, and I follow the teachings of Jesus Christ.” Yet, if we look closely and honestly, we’ll find we are not acting on His daring spiritual point of view in 3 major ways:
1. We don’t dare to dream big enough.
2. We give up on our dreams too easily.
3. We get disillusioned by naysayers, the economy, and the externals of Conventional Wisdom.
In her book “Field of Dreams,” my friend, Reverend Mary Morrissey writes, “Often someone building their field of dreams will run out of steam.” When you are tempted to buy into externals, feel your energy for reaching you dream waning and think of giving up, stop and ask yourself, “Is my dream worthwhile?” That’s a big question. “Is my dream worth the work I have to put into manifesting it? Should I or shouldn’t I be doing this? Does my dream make sense in my life? Does my dream unite all three levels of my being? Does it express love and unity? Is my dream for the highest and best of all concerned? You are going to answer these questions for yourself today.
Question 1: Think about your dream right now.
The dream that you have held inside of you, embraced sometimes, hugged sometimes, and put aside sometimes. Take it out and dust it off. Do you feel more alive when you think about your dream? Does your energy level rise? Are you filled with vitality and excitement when you think about your dream? You are in a laboratory called Earth Life designed to support you in bringing forth your dream(s). It’s important to know that it is Your Essence, your Christ Mind, your Higher Self, and oneness with God that gives you your dream, your desire to manifest your dream and the energy and wisdom to bring forth your dream and not just your Ego, human mind, human history, and physical energy. Who you were yesterday, what you’ve been through, all the limitations and setbacks you’ve had in your life, even all the successes of your past, will not bring forth your dream, It is your Essence--who you are right now and who you have always been: a spiritual being and an individualized expression of God, that is the part of the 3-fold you that gives you your dream and that will bring forth your dream through you.
Years ago, I visited Jamaica. A longtime resident told me that the people native to Jamaica use a different name, a name that means, “The land of look behind.” He said, “For a long time, Jamaica was a slave state. Slaves would escape to a place in the mountains where there were heavy thorn briers. They would crawl into the briers because they knew they would be safe there. The people who tried to control their lives wouldn’t follow them into the thorns. Still, even in the middle of the thorns in areas they had cut out and lived in, they were always looking over their shoulders in fear of losing their freedom again.”
We, too, are living as slaves in bondage to the physical side of life (Egypt) when we live in the “land of look behind”. When you think, “I can’t do that because I have only done this,” remember, “There is only one presence and one power in the universe and in my life, God the good omnipotent.” However, also remember that Presence and Power exists simultaneously as invisible Spirit and visible, Matter or Form. Since you are created in the image and likeness of God you are first and foremost a spiritual being living in a spiritual universe governed by spiritual law. This means that like God, you also have an invisible spirit or Essence (Christ Self) and a visible, Ego composed of Mind/emotion and physical body.
(Spiritual Explanation of the Spiritual Journey) You are on a spiritual journey from a conditioned belief that you are ‘only human’ represented in the New Testament by the different names (natures) of Jesus: Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus Christ, Christ Jesus, and Christ. The changes in the ‘names’ used by the Gospel writers referring to Jesus represent a hidden code of his journey of growth in spiritual awareness from an infant named Jesus born of the royal house of King David, who lived in Nazareth under the oppressive conditioning and occupation of the Roman Government, to a teenager who told his parents, “Don’t you know I must be about my Father’s business,” and who then grew in spiritual stature by making right choices from his Christ Mind rather than Ego to become a Rabbi, Prophet, Teacher, and Miracle Worker and thus become Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ taught spiritual transformation rather than conformity to the Conventional Wisdom of the Jewish elites his time and was rejected by them, accused of claiming to be the King of the Jews, turned over to the Roman governor Pontius Pilate, tried and crucified for the crime of insurrection to Rome. He was placed by Romans in a Tomb and rose from the dead three days later and then referred to as Christ Jesus, signifying that Spirit creates and heals body. Spirit creates Matter. Matter doesn’t create Spirit. He then makes many appearances as the risen Christ before his Ascension as a son of God into Heaven, revealing God life as You is eternal. Rome can kill the body/Jesus, but Matter/Rome cannot destroy what God created and called Good – and that is You. This final transformation signifies the shift in consciousness that takes place as we cease living life determined by the Conventional Wisdom of our culture as an outward seeing and living limited, personal Ego, taught to believe it is powerless, separate from God and subject to the physical Law of Karma (Cause and Effect), and fear of physical death to an awakened Ego that increasingly begins looking only to God as the only Source for guidance and right choice making (Jesus Christ), until the Christ Mind/Essence/True Self becomes our go to choice and increasingly lives through the Ego Self (Christ Jesus). As we grow in spiritual stature (awareness of our true nature) eventually it is only the Christ or God Self ceaselessly expressing Ascension Consciousness as the Law of Grace.)
In awareness of this transformation in consciousness Jesus Christ said, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” Of this consciousness Paul said, “This is the Truth that has been hidden from humanity by the earthly powers (of Conventional Wisdom for all the ages of man), “Christ in you, your hope of glory.” You can see why earthly power groups would want this information hidden from those they exploit for their own wealth, power, and prestige.
Jesus said, “Spirit and Matter are are two sides of the same coin. Render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s and to God that which is God’s.” In other words, God doesn’t look just to your human self and history. God is looking and living through you as essence/Christ and what you are willing to let God do through you as an individualized expression of God. A recurrent message throughout the Bible is: what counts is what you are connected to and what you believe you are connected to (Spirit first or Matter first) and who you believe is doing the work (God or Man). Ask yourself: Do I believe that I am connected to God and a spiritual being having an occasional human experience? Do I believe Jesus’ words: “It is not I but the Christ within me who does the works.” Or do I believe that I am just a physical, human being, trying to become more spiritual? Joshua is the Old Testament character who represents the Jesus Christ Mind. This level of consciousness and step on our spiritual journey is reflected in the words he said to the Israelites (a word meaning ‘seekers of God’) as they stood at the entrance to their Promised Land (dream), “Choose this day who you will serve, God of Mammon.” When you look at yourself in a mirror and when you think about your dream what do you see first, ‘Spirit/God or Man/Matter/Limitation?
The Spiritual Journey is learning to live your life by choosing to think and act from your Unlimited True Self your Christ Mind and not from your conditioned human self. Your dreams, your success, and your freedom to live life as you choose is freely given by God to you, for “God lives, moves, and has Its being in you.” Jesus took this message to the poorest of the poor to reveal that ‘Rome as the powers of man’ cannot permanently take away what God is in you. Put your faith in God because God cannot fail. There is only one true power and that is God life itself which is eternal. God is one and thus it cannot war against itself.
To begin to live the dream that you have in your heart recognize that God is in your heart and that God put the desire to manifest that dream there. The word ‘desire’ is Latin meaning “Of the Father.” When Jesus said, “Ask in my name and it will be done’ he wasn’t talking about ‘his personal name or form level of being, but in the consciousness or level of ‘Spirit’. The next question you need to ask yourself is “What is the first spiritual step I can take?” The first spiritual step to take in the direction of your dream is always the inward step of prayer and meditation and knowing by holding the thought, “My dream has God in it.”
Do this and you will find your dream as a life of its own because God is dreaming through you. You breathe God life into it by giving it your spiritual attention. Our Native American brothers and sisters also teach this great Truth in the form of the following parable. An Indian Brave went to the Wise Man and said, “I have been dreaming at night and I’m very disturbed by my dream. There is this big black dog and then comes this white dog and they are fighting.” The Wise Man sits and listens to the Indian Brave and says, “The white dog will win.” The Indian Brave says, “How do you know that the white dog will win?” The Wise Man answers, “Because you will feed it.” When you feed your dreams instead of your fears, you release God through you. We are sometimes afraid of our dream because it is in the great unknown. We ask ourselves in fear: “Where will it take me? What changes, what sacrifices will I have to make. What will chasing my dreams cost me?” As you go after your God given dream your life will change but knowing God in prayer and meditation is feeding the white dog and that gives you the strength, courage, and power to go forward toward your greater good –the good God has planned for you by giving you the desire for the dream in the first place.
Question 2: When you think about your dream does it align with your core values?
There was once a professor at a college, and he had a big glass jar which he filled up to the brim with sizeable rocks. Then he asked his students, “Is this glass jar full?” They said, “Yes, it is full.” He asked, “Students, can I get anything else into this glass jar?” The students said, “No, that thing is filled with rocks.” Then the professor smiled and took some gravel. The gravel went into the glass jar around the rocks, went to the bottom and slowly filled up. Then he said, “Students, is the glass jar full now? Can I get anything else in?” One student realizing that though to his eyes it looked full, he was going to give the professor the right answer and said, “No, I don’t think it is full at all.” The professor said, “You are right.” The professor then poured in a whole cup of sand, which went around the gravel, down through the rocks and filled up from the bottom of that glass jar to the top. Then he said to the students, “Is the glass jar full now?” The students said, “No way.” (You learn fast in college.) The professor said, “You are so right.” He took a big cup of water and poured it in, and the sand and gravel and rocks soaked it up. But then he said something he hoped the students would never forget. He said, “Know what your big rocks are in life, what is really important to you, because so often we fill our jar of life first with the water, the sand, or the gravel and then we can’t get in the things that are really important to us.” (Get a jar, rocks, sand, water and do this experiment. Put the jar in a visible place to remind yourself of how you want to put your life together.)
Here is an example. There was a lady whose family was the huge rock in her jar of her life. She had a wonderful husband and marriage a beautiful little daughter. One of her dreams was to work on a cruise ship. She received an offer to do so but it required her to be away four months at a time. Her husband was a very supportive man, he said, “Go, live your dream.” So, she went off to work for four months away from her husband and little girl and by the third month, she was miserable. She asked herself, “Why am I miserable, I have high pay, I have my dream, I have everything I thought I wanted in my life.” When she realized her core values of husband, children, family, loving home life were missing, she realigned her life. Our dreams often change as we change and grow. What we dream we want at one stage of life isn’t the dream trying to come though us at another. Have you ever experienced this?
Question #3: Are you willing to grow?
If you decide to go after your dream, you will have to grow. Psychologist Abraham Maslow said, “Dreams speak to us through our discontent, saying, ‘Hey, did you forget about me?” Margaret Chase Smith was an American politician, the first woman to serve in both houses of the United States Congress, and the first woman to represent Maine in either. She is also famous for saying this about dreams. “When people keep telling you that you can’t do a thing, you kind of like to try it.” She said that she was motivated through discontent and “by not believing what others said, but by believing she could go beyond.” She was not limited by what other thought about her and her possibility to manifest her dreams. How about you? Are you limited by what others think or say about you and your potential?
Here is a story to illustrate going beyond self-imposed limitations. A man went fishing. He looked down the riverbank for the right place to fish and noticed an old man fishing and having a lot of success. He was pulling in one fish after another and to the young man’s amazement, he saw the old man taking out a broken ruler and measure each fish. If it was too big, if it didn’t fit the small size of the broken ruler, he would throw the fish back. The young man thinking that the old man had some secret walked over to him and asked him, “What secret do you have about the small fish? Are they more tasty or special?” The old man laughed and said, Nope, I just want ones that fit my frying pan.” People like Abraham Maslow, Margaret Chase Smith, Jesus Christ and Paul would say, “For Heavens’ sake, get a bigger frying pan! Get a bigger dream! A dream so big that you have to get God to help you realize it.”
Question 4: In your dream do you need God to make it come true?
Never measure your dream from where you are. If you say, "From where I’m standing it would be absolutely impossible to be over there because there is a big cliff and a big valley I don’t know how to get across.” Keep your eye on God and don’t doubt. You already know that you can’t do this by yourself, so don’t even try. Work with God and get it done.
Question 5. If you believed it really wasn’t possible, what would you be doing right now?
Dr. Wayne Dyer tells a story about a time he was at the airport and found that the plane he was supposed to take to Chicago was grounded. This was a huge problem because he had to be in Chicago that night to speak at a convention. They were counting on him. He was the only speaker. He told the clerk who said, “That’s impossible. We can’t do it. There’s no other airline flying there. We can’t get you there before tomorrow morning.” Wayne Dyer said, “I’d like to speak to someone else.” A supervisor came and said, “That’s impossible, we can’t do that. I’m sorry, but we can’t get you there before tomorrow morning.” Dyer said, “Can I speak to someone who doesn’t believe it is impossible?” He kept asking and asking this and people were getting really annoyed with him. Finally, one of the upper management people came out who had a different mind-set, a different way of looking at things. He looked at the computer screen and said, “There is a possibility here.” He rerouted Dr. Dyer’s flight plan in an unconventional way focused on the possibility of arriving on time but and not the probability. Everything about the flights and ground transportation he would have to take would have to work in Dr. Dyer’s favor. The improbable became the possible. He arrived at the Convention Center 10 minutes ahead of schedule because he found another mind that was willing to know with him that it was not impossible. Do you nourish your dream with likeminded believers? Find 2 to 5 likeminded believers to Master Mind pray with--not doubters, but people of like mind, who can believe in you and your dream when you can’t believe in yourself. “For where 2 or more are gathered in my name, I am there among them.” (Mt. 18:20)
Question 6: From where you are standing can you see in this dream, good for others?
As you rise you are not just doing this for your own Ego Self. A basic spiritual truth is that ‘Everything is created twice.’ The lectern I use on the stage of our Unity Church on Sundays to talk to you from was originally an idea and a dream in someone’s head then it was created in manifestation by someone’s skilled hands. ‘Everything is created twice.’ If it’s of God, it benefits you and then it radiates out from you to benefit others. When you are going toward the harvesting of your dream you must keep that in mind. As you go toward your dream your dream is building you and growing you and, in the end, you are really harvesting yourself. Another spiritual Truth is: “If you can dream it. If you can see or feel it in your mind and heart, it already exists.” The Law of Mind Action is: “First in your mind and then in manifestation in your life.” This Law is also stated as, “Thoughts held in mind produce after their kind.” And “As above, so below.” So, dust off your dreams and dare to dream big.
I’d like to close this talk about making dreams as core values that may change over time come true with a story about a man who was nearly 100 years old. He was out walking along one day, and he looked down and saw a frog. The frog started talking to him. It said, “Old man, I’m really a beautiful young woman, a princess. If you kiss me on the lips, I’ll become a beautiful princess in front of your eyes.” When the old man just stood there thinking, the frog repeated itself, “Kiss me on the lips and I’ll become a beautiful princess in front of your eyes, and I’ll be with you forever.” The old man bent down, picked up the frog and put it in his pocket. He had the frog there for hours as he walked along. The frog continued to talk from his pocket. “Didn’t you hear me? I’m a beautiful young princess. If you just kiss me, I will become, in front of your eyes, a princess; a dream come true.” Finally, the old man took the frog out of his pockets, looked it right in the eyes and said, “I heard you, but at my age, I’d rather have a talking frog.”
What do you think?
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