UNITY OF VANCOUVER
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Make Friends with Your Work
Reverend Bernadette Voorhees
  September 5, 2021

 All Rights Reserved

 


MEDITATION



Relax and let your seat support you as you close your eyes and open your heart and mind to receive. Affirm, “The Father and I are one.” Allow this feeling of oneness to enfold you, surround you, lift you and flow through your entire being as you experience God. As you rest in God’s presence, focus on the light of Christ in you.  See that light behind your closed eyes. Focus on the light and remember that you are the light of God and God through you can heal anything in your life and do anything through you.  There is nothing that can block God’s light. Affirm: “I am the light of God and God’s power is shining through me now.” Rest in God’s oneness, lift whatever needs to be lifted or healed into the light and affirm again: “I am the light of God and God’s power is shining through me now.”

Jesus said, “Fear not little flock, it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” You are one with the healing power of the universe. Accept that for yourself, trust that, for Jesus said, “When you pray, believe that it is possible for you.” So, believe that you are heir to all the good in the universe, for you are the light of God made manifest. Rest in that healing realization now as we close with our Prayer for Protection: “The light of God surrounds us; the love of God enfolds us; the Power of God protects us: the Presence of God watches over us. Wherever we are God is, and all is well. Amen.

MAKE FRIENDS WITH YOUR WORK

Jesus words, “Ye shall know the truth and the Truth shall make you free,” (Jn. 8:32) implies that “Bondage in life is caused by acceptance of erroneous beliefs.” Greek philosopher, Zeno says, “The most important part of learning is to unlearn our errors.” Our attitude toward work regulates the flow of affluence to us. Our attitudes about what we do determines how successful, happy and well we’ll serve in a particular job. In Spiritual Economics nothing is more basic than unlearning mistaken beliefs toward work.

1.Why do you work? It seems obvious. We work to make a living. But if that’s the only reason then that’s one of the error thoughts you need to unlearn. It’s an attitude that’s frustrating your Creative Flow.

2. What are you getting out of your work? If you respond just in terms of salary and benefits you’re underpaid and shortchanging yourself. Prosperity is a reflection of your consciousness as the degree to which your thoughts are centered in the Divine Flow.

You’ll spend most of your life engaged in some kind of employment. If your attitude about work and your job isn’t right, you can actually be working against yourself in consciousness by being out of sync with God and the Creative Flow Of the Universe.
German Educator, Friedrich Frobel said, “The idea that men toil and work for the sake of preserving their bodies and procuring for themselves bread, houses and clothes is degrading and not to be encouraged. The true origin of man’s activity and creativeness lies in his increasing impulse to embody outside of himself the Divine and Spiritual Element within him.” We’re spiritual beings, not just beasts of burden. Work is and should be considered a giving process and we must condition ourselves to this awareness. Life is a process of growth and we grow through giving.

Jesus said, “Don’t let the left hand know what your right hand is doing.” (Matt. 6:3). In other words, don’t get trapped in the error thought of equating what you earn with the work you do and get caught up in the “Another day, another dollar syndrome.” Let your work be something you engage in through the sheer joy of fulfilling your Divine Nature. The ‘work’ you do is one of the ways you build a consciousness of giving and to an outworking ‘receiving from the flow of life.’

I like to read about the early careers of famous people and what they did before they found their ultimate destiny.  Gary Larson, one of the world’s funniest cartoonists was a dogcatcher. Whoopi Goldberg was a dishwasher. Jesus was a Carpenter’s son (stone mason) and probably very good at it. But his story isn’t about that.

3. Do you see your job as part of your spiritual growth? Life is about growth and not just paychecks and fringe benefits as illustrated in this story. Once three stonecutters were in a courtyard cutting stones with chisels. A stranger asked each one of them what they were doing. The first replied, “Can’t you see, I’m cutting stones.” The second replied, “I’m working so that my family can live and grow.” But the third replied with a sense of pride. “I’m building a cathedral and each stone I cut is going into a house of worship that will last beyond my life.” Each worker here is doing the same task, but each has a different attitude about what he’s doing.

4. Think about what you do and ask yourself if you would do what you do for free if you could afford to. In his book the Prophet, Kahill Gribran said: “Work is love made visible and if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms to those who work with joy.”

5. What’s your attitude about what you’re doing? Do you feel successful in your work? Eric Butterworth said, “One of the greatest problems in the Western world today is the great depression of worker attitudes. There has been a steady erosion of the old-fashioned work ethic, leading to a loss of the sense of work being done in the context of the whole person. We see masses of people going off daily to work that’s a drudgery and meaningless process of putting in time where little is given beside what is required and little is received besides a contracted for salary.” In his book, “Spiritual Economics” Eric Butterworth gives several reasons for this:

1. The growing trend toward specialization where few persons do a whole job they can feel good about. Rapidly dwindling opportunities to work in places where you work with basic materials and create something you can stand back, look at and say “Look at what I did. This is great!”

2. The changing values of society where ‘a good job’ has come to mean a ‘high salary’. This has led to ‘job hopping’ for work that will pay more money. A person will often leave a job he likes for a better paying job doesn’t like at all.

3. The shift to a materialistic and gadget-conscious culture which deems as necessities expensive things, which require more and more money to buy. This has led to a worker holding down two or more jobs in order to keep up a certain standard of living. Many people deal with their work life as a ‘life-sentence’ from which they may ultimately retire, like getting time off for good behavior. A confusion of work attitudes gives rise breakdowns and burnout. “According to Gestalt Psychology, in order for us to experience Mental Health, as a sense of well being and peace in our lives, we have to have a relationship with our environment, with our livelihood, with our work.  We have to be connected in some way to it.  If we aren’t we feel separated and alienated. We feel a sense of aloneness and a sense of being out there fighting all of life’s battles by ourselves.”

5. Think about your work or livelihood: Do you feel successful?  Jesus said, “The Father and I are one. He understood he wasn’t alone and was always “about my Father’s business.” He looked at his ‘work’ as a Mission to reflect the Presence and Power of God. He defined himself by his work. “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father. I have come to bear witness to the light.” How about you?

6. Do you define yourself by the work you do? You aren’t just a teacher, plumber, mother, father, homemaker or whatever. You are a spiritual being creating an environment of love, peace, and wisdom. Kahilil Gibran said, “When you work you fulfill a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born and in keeping yourself with labor, you are in Truth loving life, and to love life through labor is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret.”

7. Who would you be without this work? You can work for money, prestige and climb to the pinnacle of success and still not know who you are so your life still may not satisfy you because you aren’t fulfilled in yourself. Being about ‘your Father’s business’ is your ‘vocation’. The word ‘vocation’ comes from a Latin derivative, which means, “I call.”  This is saying that our ‘vocation’, our occupation should be ‘a calling’ to be and do something meaningful in the physical world and not just ‘a job’ or function we do everyday. Ebert Hubbard said, “Success is the most natural thing in the world. The person who doesn’t succeed has placed himself in opposition to the laws of the Universe. You aren’t a helpless creature adrift on the seas of life, trying desperately to make something of yourself against impossible odds. Your desire to get ahead and the urge to succeed is your intuitive awareness of something within you that wants to succeed through you.”

The success urge is basic to what we call ‘the American Dream.” My ancestors came here believing anyone can come here and succeed. But there is a possible downside to this according to Butterworth who says, “The Success Syndrome is when if you feel guilty because you think you should be more successful or doing something other than what you are doing.” A person holding the same job, like me for 30-40 years, may be asked, “Are you still at that job?” The implication is ‘Why haven’t you progressed or grown?” When viewed through the Success Syndrome this person ‘should be dissatisfied with his work.’

Many people are influenced by outside pressure like this and feel that they should be climbing, prospering, doing something else or someone else’s definition of success. There is “a difference between seeing what you do as a cosmic urge to ‘be more’ rather than interpreting it as ‘the desire to have more.”

Success isn’t about ‘getting there.’  It is earning the right ‘in consciousness to be there.’ Some people claw their way to the top and feel that they have to be devious to stay there. What you earn by ‘right of consciousness’ can’t be taken from you. The ‘good life and the prosperous life’ is about values and not valuables. This kind of spiritual idealism express on a tombstone in Boston Commons: “Here lies the body of Andrew Murray who cobbled shoes to the glory of God for 40 years.”

8. Are you grateful for your work? When you understand who and what you are- You are grateful for your work as a place to ‘let your light shine.’ Make a commitment to think of your work not as a place to make a living but as the opportunity to make a life. Think of yourself, as a channel through which creative activities flow. There is no limit to what you can express for it is God expressing in & through you. Your mind is one with the same mind that is in the genius, the successful, and the affluential. The whole Universe is on your side, guiding your hands and directing your footsteps in the way you go.

Use affirmation this week: “I am God’s living enterprise and God cannot fail.”

If the job you are doing becomes inadequate, if you keep yourself in tune with the creative flow, either the job will change, or you will be moved forward to another job. Nothing can impede the flow of affluence and success to one who keeps himself in tune with the universal flow. Affirm again: “I am God’s living enterprise & God cannot fail.”

BONUS MEDITATION

Rest in the time presence of God. Just feel God.  Every breath that you take is God’s own breath.  Every beat of your heart is God’s own heartbeat.  You live in an atmosphere of God. When we do take a moment, take time to become aware of our experience, we open ourselves up to incredible possibility. When we breathe in God, every cell of our bodies is being revitalized and renewed.  Our awareness is quickened.  We are receptive; we are open, and filled with peace, in the silence of prayer.

When asked about the kingdom of God, Jesus told this parable.  “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.  (Mt.  13:33) In this parable, we catch a sense of expanded awareness, that lifting and growing.  As the flour is leavened, so our lives leavened and lightened by our allowing the presence of God to be more in our lives.

Thank you, God, for the experience of You right now.

Your love and guidance, Your strength and wisdom fill me now and I am blessed. Amen.


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