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Weekly Message for Sunday, September 7, 2003
         

                       This week I met with a young man, only 21 years old, who related to me that he has made so many mistakes he has ruined his life.  He told me that his past was filled with lies, cheating on his girlfriends and then later cheating on his wife.  After his wife filed for divorce, he immediately began another relationship and has repeated the patterns of his past.  As he told his story to me, he was visibly filled with remorse, regret, guilt and shame.  He told me his family no longer has faith in him and he feels he has betrayed everyone he cares about.   Since he had already told me all the things that he felt were wrong in his life, I asked him to tell me his positive qualities.  He could not name even one.

           What he is experiencing are his past thoughts, beliefs and concepts about life in general and himself in the particular.  Lacking any real sense of confidence or faith in himself ... he validated his lack of confidence and faith through others.  I explained to him that until he established faith in himself, he could not expect others to have faith in him.  Since we are all in the One Mind, it is impossible to experience something in the "without" unless we have established it "within."  In Truth we are always only experiencing our own ... consciousness.  Guilt and shame hold us chained to the past.  No one can move forward with confidence and faith by holding ideas of guilt and shame in their consciousness.  Positive, forward thinking, cannot thrive in a consciousness filled with the negative.  In the extreme, guilt and shame can immobilize us ... bring us to a state of despair and hopelessness.

         From the Science of Mind, we know that what we are experiencing today is the sum total of our thoughts, beliefs and concepts ... but today .. we can cultivate new ideas, new beliefs, new concepts and change our experiences.  The Master Mind Jesus stated, "let the dead bury the dead."  He was referring to the past.  We can renew our mind today ... embrace hope ... affirm confidence in ourselves ... and then today begins the unfoldment of new experiences.

        As we acknowledge that we must change ... we begin the change.  At first it may not be obvious to those around us ... but as we gain a greater confidence and feeling of self-assurance and establish this in our consciousness, the mental atmosphere that surrounds us will attract to us people and experiences that validate our change.  As Emerson stated, "who you are speaks so loudly, I cannot hear a word you say."  It is this mental atmosphere created from our consciousness that touches those around us ... the greater the strength of our confidence and faith in ourselves, the more we will experience positive results in our life.   Many of us have experienced this at some level but never understood that it was consciousness.

         As we release the past ... we can release all that was part of it ... guilt, shame, confusion, financial disasters ... whatever it was that we don't want to experience anymore.   And as I explained to the young man ... the past does not define you ... the past is merely an experience ... and we can have more of the same experiences ... if we hold onto the past in our mind ...  but, as we release the past ... we open our minds to something new, something greater ... even perhaps a seeming miracle or two!
      

                     

 And So It Is! 
Letting Love Use Me In Its Own Good Way,
Henry Lee Bates                          

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