UNITY OF VANCOUVER
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Tearing Down the Walls of Doubt
Reverend Bernadette Voorhees
  August 22, 2021

 All Rights Reserved

 


MEDITATION



In Genesis, the book of the beginning, it says, “God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth . . . and God saw everything that he had made, & indeed, it was very good." [Genesis 1:27-28, 31].

Let us, during this prayer time, cast off the feeling of limitation and frustration that keeps us from being what we were created to be. Our Creator believes in us. Let us take this time to reaffirm our belief in our Creator and ourselves. Even in the midst of your sense of separation, when you have a mistaken identity, a false sense of self, your Creator believes in you. Even in the dark night of your soul, (which is a time when all seems lost), God believes in you. Even when you fail to hear or turn away from the call of greatness that urges you to return to your Source, God believes in you. Think about that for a moment and allow it to empower you:
Affirm: “God believes in me.”  Now rest in the silence of prayer.

Listen to the following words and allow me to speak that silent voice inside of you. “God believes in me. God has faith in me. God created me in God's image and after God's likeness. My Creator believes in me. God put the Divine spirit within me, and God has faith in me. If others lose their faith in me and even if I lose my faith in myself, God, never loses faith in me for I am God's creation. God and I are one--one in faith, one in belief, one in trust. A life energy is released in you as you meditate on these truths about you. The words are the leading edge of a whole new state of faith believing in and trusting in God, and in the image or individualization of God that you are. Accept this truth about you right now, in a moment of silence.

God has never left or forsaken you. God loves you with an everlasting love. With loving kindness, God draws us together and awakens us to the truth of our being.
“It is God's good pleasure to give us the kingdom,” not because we have worked hard to earn it or that we merit it, but because of the grace of our Creator who believes in us.

We are to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, all our strength and our neighbor as ourselves. This is the natural expectation of the Creator who believes in us and who knows the stuff we are made of.

God expects us to believe in the Divine, to believe in ourselves and to believe in our neighbor as God does.

As we close this wonderful time of prayer with God, we are to let our light shine in such a way that all who see it will know that its source is the God of light inside us and in them. This is the radiant desire of our Creator who believes in us, and the example demonstrated by Jesus Christ in whose name and nature we pray.  Amen.

TEARING DOWN THE WALLS OF DOUBT

A mother found her four-year-old son crying as he was tying his shoes. She said,
“Honey, why are you crying?” He said, “Because I have to tie my shoes.” The mother said, “But you’ve just learned how.  It isn’t that hard, is it?” “No,” he cried, “but I just realized I’m gonna have to do it the rest of my life.” Have you ever felt that way?

Sometimes if we look ahead to the future through our imagination, life can feel overwhelming.
There are things that feel overwhelming to us if we think m from the aspect of
“I have to do this. I must meet this challenge.  I must be up to the task and there is no one to help me. I must do it alone.”

I recently watched a man being interviewed about an earthquake which devastated his country. The interviewer asked:
“What will you do?”  He said, “We will quietly rebuild.  What else can we do?”

A lot of times there is a long road ahead of us and we need the power of God to help us go down that road.  So, in this lesson we are going to talk about tearing down the walls of doubt in our lives. When you are working within yourself to tear down a wall of doubt, you need two forms of help, human and divine.

1. I’m going to talk about human help first. Have you heard the story of Androcles and the Lion? Let me share it with you. Androcles was a slave who escaped his taskmaster and had run to find his freedom. He hid in a cave. As he was hiding there, he heard a noise. When he turned around to see what it was, he saw a lion coming toward him. Looking at the lion, he thought, “This is worse than what I escaped from.”  Then the lion growled, and he just knew that he was going to be eaten; that he had come to the end of the line. He cowered down and tried to back away from the lion, but the lion just kept coming closer. Then Androcles noticed a tear coming out of the lion’s eye and the lion stuck out his paw. His paw was all swollen; in the middle of the swelling was a thorn. Androcles carefully removed the thorn from the lion’s paw and the lion seemed to smile. Then he licked his face and retreated deeper into the cave. Androcles breathed a sigh of relief and continued on with his life. Three years later, Androcles had become a Christian and was living in Rome. At that time the Romans were really persecuting Christians. One day Androcles was seized by Roman soldiers and ordered to renounce his faith.  When he refused, they told him that they were going to throw him to the lions. Standing in the Coliseum, he faced a huge lion.
Can you guess which lion he faced?  Yes, it was the same lion he had helped three years earlier. The lion came out growling but when he recognized Androcles, instead of eating him, he licked his face.  When the people saw this, they cheered and gave Androcles a thumbs up. He was released because the Romans thought he was a person of high magic.  The metaphysical meaning of the story is that he was and so are we.

I have some questions for you now.

1. 
How many lions have you befriended on your pathway of life?

2
.  How many thorns have you withdrawn or removed from swollen paws, even amid your own challenge?

3. 
Are you aware that someday you are going to be thrown into the arena? There will be times in life when you will be asked, “Will you renounce your faith?”  What is your answer?  Is your faith strong enough to face the lion?  Do you know what will save you when you do?

We all, at various times, are thrown into an arena.
Do you know what saves us?  What saves us are those times when we have befriended someone and helped others; the times they have been at their worst and we have been at our best; the times we have helped them, pulling the thorns from swollen paws. We are saved in that moment. Possibly some time ago you befriended somebody, and your life changed for the better because of it. I have certainly found that to be true in the business world.  For example:  You as a businessperson are in the midst of downsizing, new management or worse, yet you’ve taken the time to pull some thorns from some swollen paws at these times during your career and because of that act of kindness, ultimately you have been alright.  Helping has great power.

One seed can make a tree and one tree, many more trees, forming a forest.  One drop of water added to another and then another will form a river that will flow into the sea.  One step at a time, one day at a time is how we make our journey of life.  When you find your imagination running ahead with you, you can find relief from tension by realizing that you don’t have to live a whole year in one day. Our highest aspirations are reached one step at a time, helping, and being helped by one person at a time.  That’s the human part of this lesson and it is so important to understand.

You are not here to be ‘an individual’. You are here to be an ‘individualized expression of God’, inter-creative with God and others.  Every drop of water contains all the elements.  Every seed the cosmic design of creation.  They unite as wholes.  Think about that!  You don’t need someone to be whole. You are already whole.  You know this is true. I love being a drop, but I also love the power of the river and becoming one with the sea.  I need inter-action like this with you and my prayer and meditation times to experience all that’s possible for me to experience as ‘a particle of God stuff.’

2. Experiencing God, the Divine is the second part of all this.  To really produce something of power, something that has the power to tear down the walls of doubt inside and outside of us, we need help beyond ourselves.  We need help beyond the other people standing around us.  We need Divine help.

God is constantly whispering to you,
"Surprise yourself!" The human self in you may answer, "I'm afraid." But God constantly whispers from inside us as Desire: “You can be more. You can have more. You can do more.” God is a cosmic, creative catalyst that gets you moving and keeps you moving forward toward your greater good.  As you read this, you may be facing something in your life that looks like a 20 ft ravine of a challenge you are required to jump across. You look before you leap, and you wonder if you can make it.  Where is your faith in these times?  Some of you have taken a great leap of faith and are now in mid-air realizing, there is no turning back. You can’t go up. You can’t go down. There’s nowhere else to go but forward.

Do you remember the story of Joshua and the battle of Jericho?  (Joshua 6:1-17).  It’s a story about tearing down the walls of doubt; the walls of Jericho.  In Unity, when we read the Bible, we realize that all the characters in the story are aspects of ourselves.  Great Truths can come when we realize these stories are about our lives here and now. As I share the story now, imagine that all the characters and happenings are all a part of you and your life.

“Now Jericho was shut up inside and out because of the Israelites; no one came out and no one went in.” Think about yourself when you are filled with fear. Isn’t that what it feels like when you are filled with fear? When we are fearful, we shut ourselves up and put a wall around our minds. When you are fear filled, someone can say something very positive to you, but you can’t hear them.  All those positive thoughts just bounce off your walls of doubt, like insect repellent. You are locked up inside yourself with worry, sickness, or whatever problem you think you are closing the gates of your mind against. You must tear down that wall of doubt and you are going to need help doing that.  That’s what this story is all about.

“The Lord said to Joshua...” Joshua is your name too.  It means “whom God makes triumphant.”  It is Hebrew for Jesus.  Jesus is Joshua in Greek.   When God comes through you and makes you triumphant, you know that something miraculous has happened.

“The Lord said to Joshua, “See I have handed Jericho over to you, along with its king and soldiers.” Jericho is the first city to be conquered by the Israelites (seekers of God) as they cross over the Jordan (river of life) into the land of Canaan (The Promised Land). The Promised Land is consciousness.  What it means metaphysically is ‘spiritual realization.’

Jericho means ‘moon reflecting.’  Isn’t this fascinating?  What is the moon?  A reflector.  It does not shine with its own light; it merely reflects the light of the sun. You do not shine with your own light or live with your own life; you reflect the life of God.

Charles Fillmore, co-founder of Unity said, “When the intellect becomes egotistical, when it thinks that it originates its own light, there is always a problem.”  It is like laying out in the moonlight and trying to get a suntan.  Our intellect is reflected light from the Mind of God.  When we stop thinking that ‘what we think’ ‘is the end-all’ and turn to God, then the walls are torn down inside of us. The ‘walls of doubt.’ The wall of separation between us and God.  It’s that simple.  Then you have the power to do what needs to be done in your life.

And what needs to be done? You need to take the city! And the story tells you how. “You shall march around the city, all the warriors circling the city at once for 6 days, with 7 priests bearing 7 trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark.  On the 7th day you shall march around the city 7 times, the priests blowing trumpets.  When they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, as soon as you hear the sound of the trumpet, then all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city will fall down flat, and all the people shall charge straight ahead.”

The ark represents the body of the human.  ‘7’ refers to the Divine law of perfection. There are ‘7’ centers through which intelligence is expressed which we must perfect: Seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, feeling, intuition, and telepathy.

When we read about going around the city 7 times, it means we are to enter into every one of the abilities we have as humans and to focus our thoughts on God so much that literally, you see, hear, taste, and smell God all around you.  It’s talking about spiritual completion within you, by allowing a full day for the purification of each sense.

You will not use any physical force in doing this. We’re talking about using meditation and prayer. After the purification process, all your senses shout “GOD” and the walls will fall down on their own.

“The 7 priests carrying the 7 trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the Lord passed on, blowing the trumpets continually.  They did this for 6 days.  On the 7th day they rose at dawn, and marched around the city in the same manner 7 times.  It was only on that day that they marched around the city 7 times.  And at the 7th time when the priest had blown the trumpets, Joshua said to the people, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city.”

The “city” is a gathering of all the thought people inside you.  All your senses come together and shout, “It’s All God!” and the walls of doubt inside of you are torn down.

“. . . The city and all that is in it shall be devoted to the Lord.” So, all the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown, and the wall fell down flat; so, the people charged straight ahead into the city and captured it.”

This is my story, and it is your story.

So, to tear down the walls of doubt within you:  remember

1.     You need two forms of help, human and divine.

2.     Then you gather your forces of Good and when everything “shouts of the presence of God;” when all 7 of your senses have been purified by awakening to the one presence and one power, there is no longer anything ‘in here or out there standing against you and the “walls come tumbling down.”



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