Alive-- and in Pain
WELCOME TO TODAY'S WORSHIP SERVICE
Rev. Wilma Wake
It Is Well With My Soul
1Another time he went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. 2Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. 3Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, "Stand up in front of everyone."
4Then Jesus asked them, "Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?" But they remained silent.
5He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. 6Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.
After the great lights are kindled and placed in the inner self, and the
outer self is receiving light from them, the time arrives when we first start to live.
Earlier, we can hardly be said to have been alive, thinking as we
did that the good we perform and the truth we speak originate in ourselves.
On our own we are dead and have nothing but evil and falsity
inside, with the result that nothing we produce from ourselves has life.
So true is this that by our own power we cannot do anything good—at
least not anything inherently good. ...
Heavenly Secrets, #39
There is a constant inflow from the spiritual world into the physical world. Unless people realize that there is a spiritual world and that it is as distinct from the physical world s an anntecedent circumstance is from its consequence or a cause from it causes, they cannot know nything about inflow.
DLW NCE, 340
ALIVE .... and IN PAIN
It was 6:00 PM on May 31, 1997. In an instant, Robert S. Mulsberry’s life was changed forever. He had been living an idyllic life in a small Iowa town as a parish minister, as well as a husband, father, and athlete. He had spent the afternoon working on his sermon for the next day, with a text from the 3rd chapter of Mark about Jesus healing on the Sabbath. He never did deliver that sermon, but he lived through it the next day when doctors spent the Sabbath trying to save his life.
At 6 PM on May 31st, he was riding his bike, when a hit and run driver blindsided him. Mulberry barely survived, with permanently paralyzed legs and a life in a wheel chair.
How could he come to terms with such a tragedy? He wrote a book about his healing journey, called Blindsided by Grace: Entering the World of Disability.
Michael J. Fox has a similar perspective. He writes about his experience of being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease:
How can we understand such injury and illness from a Swedenborgian perspective? Swedenborg tells us that in the 5th stage of regeneration, we are coming alive – we are awakening to who we really are. What if we awaken to paralyzed legs or Parkinson’s Disease?
Eugene Taylor, Ph.D, is a Swedenborgian who is a Lecturer on Psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School, and the 1983 Wiliam James Lecturer on the Varieties of Religious Experience at Harvard DivinitySchool. In his book, A Psychology of Spiritual Healing, he discusses a way to understand healing:
All of this makes sense from a Swedenborgian perspective.
There is a constant inflow from the spiritual world into the physical world. [DLW 340]
The more we align with the spiritual influx, the more we are in a state of healing; regardless of the circumstances of the body.
Physicist Stephen Hawkins says of his severe disabilities:
Through reading Swedenborg, Helen Keller came to have a similar view on her disbilities. It was only her physical sight and physical hearing that were impaired. Internally, everyone has impairment of the spiritual eyes and ears. Hers, however, were far more developed that for most people around her.
The true principle of cure is the divine love brought by the Lord’s humanity and life of divine truth … AC 5712
We can love who we are.
The basis of healing is the Divine influx. As we align with this, we find healing. It may not be paralyzed legs walking again. But it could be a paralyzed soul dancing.
What challenges do you face in your life: physically, emotionally, or spiritually? Are there spiritual blessings in your challenges? How can you find healing through aligning with the Divine in you?
I've Got Peace Like A River
Extinguish your candles