When I went into my office one morning before I did my daily spiritual practice, I was
challenged to check myself to determine if I was still in bondage to the “flesh.” As Dr. H. Emily Cady wrote in her book, Lessons in Truth, “Every man (person) believes himself to be in bondage to the flesh… All suffering is the result of this belief.” I recognized to be in bondage to the flesh is for my thoughts and feelings to be governed by external facts and from my judging by appearances.
Here’s my story. I had recently been out of town. In my absence, an important document had been overlooked and certain actions that should have been taken had not been done. The consequence of the inaction could have created a huge difficulty. My initial emotional reaction was one of anxiety, even as I successfully corrected the oversight. Yet my spirit called me to intentionally determine what underlying thoughts were generating my feelings about the matter. This required me to do as Bruce Doyle writes in How to Think Your Way to the Life You Want, “…be mindful…place your attention on how you are feeling." I thought, “Okay, you
missed taking an important action in a timely manner, and how are you viewing your oversight?” Was I judging by appearances and pulling my thoughts from external circumstances? Or was I pulling some limiting thoughts from my subconscious? Whatever the source, the feelings that I had made it very clear that there was still much work for me to “continuously” do as Jesus had taught, to live life more abundantly. Three reminders came to me:
1) God first each morning before I do anything else;
2)As long as I am wearing my human costume, I must stand guard at the gate of my consciousness. My indwelling God must be my sole control to ensure that no robbers or thieves take away my peace, joy, abundance; and
3)I must recognize my feelings. I created them, and I must not ignore or be afraid of them.
As I acknowledge them, I can immediately begin the “salvation process” of changing my thoughts. Following changing my thoughts, comes a change of feelings, and consequently, a change of my life experiences so that I am able to live more abundantly NOW!
Rev. Dr. Jacqueline Triche Atkins