The Minister's Weekly Message

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Rev. Mary Wood's Weekly Messages

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Welcome to our last lesson focused on Spiritual Economics by Eric Butterworth.  He taught that  prosperity is about living from a heightened consciousness of God,  an understanding of God as substance, so we can live prosperously in all areas of our lives.  A God of the New Testament, in which we live and move and have our being.

We explore three new Chapters Today:  The Money Enigma, Discover the Wonder of Giving, and A New Look at Tithing.



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  Adam Smith, a philosopher and economist said that All money is a matter of belief.  So, what are some of the beliefs we have about money?  Money is the root of all evil, I don’t have enough.  And the Universe says okay, if that is what is in your consciousness.  Butterworth writes “There is little likelihood that your life can become fully functioning with prosperity unless you have a positive and creative attitude toward money.”

There is not a day goes by that you aren’t going to reach for your wallet, or have some sort of transaction that involves money.   We can have all of the lofty “spiritual” goals about living in God’s abundance, but when we reach for our wallet they go out the window IF we have not reconciled ourselves with what Butterworth calls the Money Enigma:  That money is somehow UNSPIRITUAL. 

One of the most misquoted Scriptures is from Paul’s letter to Timothy where he writes, “The Love of money is the root of all evil.” (6:10)  He doesn’t say Money is evil. He says the love of money is evil.  Money is innocent.   It is our feelings about money which are the root cause of our experience. There is an old consciousness or belief system that says that money is somehow separate from God, and it’s dirty. And we have been lulled into this false belief.  

So what is money?   Butterworth says that: Money is not real wealth at all.  Rather, it is a device for measuring wealth.” Money is a measure of our prosperity.  It is not a cause of our prosperity.  Money does not affect our true wealth and happiness. When some people win the lottery, within a very short time they are usually poor again, because they do not have the consciousness of being prosperous.  Likewise, there are many with lots of money, who might hoard it, cannot get enough. Who actually live a miserly life.

And there are some who understand money, and bless it as it moves through them to bless others. They use it to bless the grocer for the food, and the grocer blesses the supply company, and the supply company the farmer, and the farmer the workers and seed producers.  And that money gets blessed and used many times over.  It becomes more valuable by sharing.  Are you smiling and happy when you’re handing out money?  Let’s realize that money is God in action!  It is energy!  Feel good about making contact with the divine energy.  Handle the money with the joyous feeling that you are in the flow!  Or as Rev. Paul Hasselbeck says, “You are the flow.” 

This leads into DISCOVER THE WONDER OF GIVING.  Norman Vincent Peale said:  "When you discover the wonder of giving you will wonder how you could have lived so long in any other way."   But in our society, the constant theme can be: get, get and get.  Or, Just hold the right thought, the right intention, & get what you want.  “ However, this misses the very important point that life is lived from the inside-out.  Unless we understand this, we miss the whole meaning of life.  The purpose of life is not acquisition but unfoldment and personal development.”

The goal of this work & this book, Butterworth says, is to discover the beliefs in our own consciousness,  and transform those beliefs in ourselves.  The apostle Paul says to Be transformed through the renewal of OUR mind.  

Butterworth shares the story of a travelling preacher, who brings his son with him to where he has been invited to preach. As they enter the church the preacher notices a collection box puts in a half-dollar.  After the sermon is over, the hosting minister said:   “We are not a prosperous church.   All we can pay you is what is in the collection box.”  So he opens the box and gives the preacher with his half-dollar, all that had been put in. Then the son says, “Gee Dad. If you had put more in, you would have gotten more out.”  How much are you and I taking from life?  And how much are you and I giving?  We cannot receive more than what we give. 

At times, there can be a period where we feeling a sense of lack, like we don’t have enough to give. It’s a natural part of the cycle.  And more than ever, this is the time to GIVE.  Giving is the key that makes Truth work, that opens the door to the good you have been seeking and gives life that added flow.  It is the better way.  And the day will come when you insist that it is the ONLY way.  

A New Look at Tithing!  - Now a little history about tithing.  In early Israel, under the leadership of Moses, the tribe of Levi supported the system of tithing.  This code was rigidly enforced, and in some cases, infractions were punishable by death.  This is the biblical source that our contemporary practice of tithing came from.  Actually, Jesus is never quoted in support of tithing.  And it’s important to note that Jesus was very specific in his teaching of the law of giving (a definite distinction between tithing and the spontaneous process of giving):  Luke 6:38:  Give, and it shall be given unto you.  A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.

Jesus taught the law of consciousness, that you and I always have a choice, and we live with the effects of that choice.  You receive as you give, and if you would receive more, you can give more.  But you have complete freedom.”  And we do not give more so we can receive more!

It has been said that tithing is a magic cure for all ills.  But there is no magic whatever in tithing.  If Prosperity or healing results from tithing, it has come through the fulfilling of the law:  As you give, so you receive.  “Tithing is not an end, but a helpful means toward the end of living totally in a giving consciousness.  Totally overlooked is the teaching responsibility to lead the person to an understanding of the process of giving way to the divine flow.”

Here are some questions we’re invited to ask:  Do I tithe to get things or to get a greater awareness of divine law?  Do I analyze how effective tithing is on the basis of my income or my general well being?  You and I cannot live without giving just like we cannot live without breathing. 

However, tithing isn’t necessarily the way to a consciousness of giving.  We can tithe but we do not really give because we’re doing it to get something back.  Jesus emphasized giving as the way to achieve this degree of consciousness:  give, and you will receive.  Get the feeling of being a channel for the flow of good.  Think of your work as giving.  Think of every relationship as an opportunity to give.  Give to your children, to your neighbours, passersby on the street.  Don’t think about what you are giving to.  Think of what you are giving from, and feel humble in realizing that you are simply giving way to the divine flow.

Tithing is not a law, but a way of fulfilling the law of giving.  This is not to say we should not give a tenth or more or less of one’s income.  Tithing is a powerful to achieve the discipline of spontaneous giving.

Let’s listen to the words of Charles Fillmore from his book Prosperity published in 1936:  (in the depression 1929-39) “In the new year now at its dawn, we shall have a spirit of prosperity.  The principle of the Universal substance will be known and acted upon, and there will be no place for lack.  Men will not pile up fortunes one day and lose them the next for they will not fear the integrity of their neighbors.  Is this an impractical utopia?  The answer depends on you.”

And Butterworth ends the book with these closing words by Edward Everett Hale: “ I am only one, but I am one.  I can’t do everything, but I can do something.  What I can do, I ought to do, And what I ought to do, By the grace of God I will do.”

And so it is….  Amen!!



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Welcome to the 4th lesson focused on Rev. Eric Butterworth’s book SPIRITUAL ECONONMICS.  Prosperity is not about money or accumulating things, but living from a heightened consciousness of God substance, in all areas of our lives.  And you and I are being called to live from the inside out; to bring compassion, to bring peace, to bring love. 



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Today we visit two new chapters:  How to Reverse Financial Adversity & Security in a Changing World. 

HOW TO REVERSE FINANCIAL ADVERSITY.  Butterworth states that the economy is a reflection of our consciousness, the consciousness of “We the people”.  “Wherever two or more are gathered, in an interaction of minds, there is a very real energy force that is projected into the world.  If the sharing is negative, as it often is, that consciousness goes forth like a beacon of darkness, adding to a weakened economy and self-poverty.”

“The starting point to changing your life from financial reverses to an experience of abundance is the realization that you can change your life by altering your thought.  You begin by taking responsibility for your own life.  As long as you are hung up on paranoid thoughts such as “It is what they are doing,” “It is what is happening in Washington (or Ottawa),” and “The IRS is harassing me,” then you cannot find help of any kind through Truth.”

Your present experience reflects your present level of awareness.  You are not the victim of circumstances.  Consciousness creates circumstances or at least sets the climate in which they happen.  WHEN BAD THINGS HAPPEN. Some people might look at the fires that happened out west, or hurricanes in Puerto Rico, and say, “What did they have in their consciousness that caused that.”  That’s not what we are talking about here.  There will always be fires, there will always be flooding, there will always be hurricanes.  Just as there will always be sickness, and poverty, and death.   The mentality of blame and shame is part of old consciousness.  Are we not ready to be done with this consciousness of blame & shame?  So what we ARE talking about is being accountable.  And the person in the old consciousness, the victim and poverty consciousness, will want to blame the government, our partner, God for causing this destruction.  Blame keeps us in a victim and impoverished state. 

We  can make lemon-aid out of lemons in these situations.  We can respond to the needs of families, neighbors and the community.  We can reach out to make a difference that is needed.  The prosperous person discovers the possibilities for good – the God Substance - in whatever situation because they know that they are accountable  -  Because they know we live our lives from the inside out and not the outside in.  So in all things there is an opportunity for learning and our growth.

 “Life is fundamentally a matter of growing.  Missing the mark is one of the ways in which we learn to hit the target.  Failure is a vital part of achieving success.  We have erroneously thought of success as “getting there,” while actually success is “earning the right to be there.  And earning means learning.  Setbacks, even failures, may be an important part of that learning.”  Well isn’t that good news! Missing the mark is part of hitting the target. Butterworth likened us to being like oysters, who experience grit or contaminants.  In life, we are going to experience grit and un-pleasantries.  And naturally we will try to get rid of them.  But when we cannot,  like the oyster, we can use that experience to develop and produce the pearl of great price that is within us.  

No one can ruin your life.  You are always responsible for the way that you accept the things that happen to you.  The incident is external; the reaction is always your own.”

The final chapter I want to share with you today is SECURITY IN A CHANGING WORLD.  Security, feeling safe, is a strange and elusive goal.  We try to create security for ourselves by putting bars on the windows, and locks on the doors. purchasing insurance on almost everything we buy, investing in stocks, bonds, retirement annuities.  “When we place the emphasis on outer things, we miss the whole meaning of life. Life is for expressing, for growth and expansion… When people think only of being safe, they stifle the urge of personal growth and advancement.  The best way to be safe is never to be secure.”   Let’s be clear here.  He’s not saying one shouldn’t have insurance or save or invest money.  What he’s saying is that security is more than financial, more than locking your door.

Security is more about our psychology and our emotions.   Our FEELINGS are key.  So if we are going to save:

  • Don’t be saving for emergencies, or out of worry or fear.
  • Save for opportunities, and for more good that will come your way.

And some of us may be able to relate to what he says about Retirement.  “The life change of retirement may be good for you, but only if it is seen not as an end, but as a redirection of activities and interests.  One must work diligently at the continuing process of keeping the whole self alive and functioning.  The Truth is, we do not grow old; when we stop growing, we are old.”

There aren’t any of us in here who have stopped growing.  If you stopped, you wouldn’t be here in Unity.  Life is filled with change, and life is change.  Life is made up of cycles:  birthing and dying, loving and leaving, and sickness and health, and riches and poverty. And to live prosperously is to live fully and consciously.   To embrace ALL of it.

I would like to close by reading with you this amended affirmation that’s in the book.

              I am secure in all I have and all I do not have,

For I know my treasure is in my mind, not in things. 

I live my life from day to day as if God’s supportive substance

Were as exhaustless and dependable as the air I breathe,

Which it most certainly is.

Let us go forth and live fully, consciously and prosperously.  NAMASTE