So that if you had all of the bread, the wine, the water, if you had all of the money and houses and yachts on the outer plane, you still might not be living, you still might not be living harmoniously, healthfully, joyously, because you cannot live by these outer things alone. You have to live by every word of God.
Now, if we were to start out life, this very moment, without a dollar bill, and with only the clothing that we find ourselves in at this moment, and without a roof over our head, may I say to you that it would be of only passing moment, that it would be of no lasting concern at all. Because every one of us here could begin life at this moment in that way, and in three days—that’s just a relative term—three days, within a comparatively short period of time, we would be reestablished in home, in health, in food, in clothing, in all forms of good. Why is that? Because the outer things that we would be deprived of are only the reflections or expressions of our spiritual state of consciousness, and if you destroyed those outer forms, in three days, this consciousness of Truth would raise them up again.
It is the experience of every initiate in the spiritual orders of the world, more especially on the inner plane, that they start their career as initiates after having given up everything and everybody. No one is permitted into the inner realms of spiritual truth and permitted to bring their possessions with them—never. As a matter of fact, the first question asked is, “Are you ready to surrender your all?” And strangely enough, when that question comes it refers not only to physical possessions, it also refers to our loved ones, and until that surrender is made, even of those, there is no entrance into the inner realms of spiritual existence. It seems harsh, but there’s a very good reason for it.
Now, one thing we know—that until we are able to accept the responsibility and say, “Yes—I could be deprived of everything and every person, turned out in this world alone with only these pieces of clothing upon me, and be assured that because I am God-governed, God-maintained, God-sustained, I wouldn’t even miss this evening’s meal. It would be prepared for me and breakfast in the morning, even if it had to be by what the world calls a miracle of cakes being baked on the stones by the angels or ravens bringing food. Unless one has that complete inner conviction, they have not yet found the realm of God, the kingdom of God, and they are still playing around out here in the outer world with shadows, with effects, and of course, that is where the Hebrews were when they wildly strove to gather in the manna.
That manna they didn’t have to struggle for because it was coming right down from the sky without might, without power, just by the Spirit of God, and if that blessing falls from the sky today, why should anyone doubt that it will do so tomorrow, the day after, and the day after that. If we have ever received anything by grace, should not that be our conviction that we will have everything by grace, and not have to store up where moth and rust doth corrupt.
Oh, that doesn’t mean that we should squander our possessions or throw them away. Let us be good custodians of them, but never let us believe that our safety or security or supply is dependent on them. I don’t have to remind you of how many times through fire, flood, volcanoes, wars, people have found themselves out on the road with no possessions—the Belgians and French in the First World War, and again the Belgians and French and the Dutch and later the Germans in the Second World War.
They all found themselves stranded out on the road and had to begin life all over again, and for some of them it was a terrible struggle because it had to be humanly accomplished. It would have been no struggle for those of spiritual vision. As a matter of fact, for those of spiritual vision, there never were hardships, even during those periods. There are many testimonies, many evidences in existence of those of spiritual enlightenment who found protection, safety, and security, and abundance throughout all of these experiences.
Now, the point for us to remember is this—all outer demonstrations, all activities, let us say, of supply, of health, of protection, of safety, of security are but the outer evidences of an inner grace. And that inner grace is not just a fanciful term. That inner grace is a consciousness of Truth—the consciousness of Truth—the awareness of Truth.
So that when we come to our first statement: We do not live by bread alone, we understand that to mean that we do not live by food, bank accounts, investments, certain forms of government, jobs, positions, businesses, savings, inheritances. We do not live alone by these outer things, but by our consciousness of Truth. Our consciousness of Truth always results in the possession and in the use of these outer forms of good.
Therefore, at some time or other, begin the realization of this great truth, build this consciousness within yourself that we do not live alone by outer forms, but by every statement of truth that we understand, that we realize, that we spiritually imbibe—not by quotations of truth, not by lip service to truth, but by the actually living of truth within our own being, the actual making it, the assimilating of it, making it a very part of our inner being.
And then we come to this, “Trust in the Lord with all thy heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy path.” Now there is just another form of an inner consciousness that will result in an outer demonstration of good. Lean not unto thine own understanding. We have built an understanding through our education, through our reading, through our environment at home and in school.
We have built an understanding of life, of our business, of how to conduct ourselves and this is not an injunction to give that up, but it means lean not unto it, depend not on it, use it, don’t depend on it, but rather acknowledge God or Truth, and He shall direct thy path.
Acknowledge God as the mind of our being, and then we draw on It for wisdom, guidance, direction, intelligence. Acknowledge God as the life of our being and then we draw on these inner forces for youth, vitality, strength, peace of body. Acknowledge God as the Soul of our being and we bring forth our purity of human existence, our integrity, one to another. Acknowledge God as the very substance of our existence. Acknowledge God as the substance of our bodies, and then we will find that these bodies will be reflecting or expressing the harmony of the substance which is God. In all thy ways acknowledge God. If there is a decision to be made, acknowledge God as the one to make the decision, and let God make that decision in you and through you and for you. If there is to be a sale or a purchase, let God advise the advisability of it, and the time of it and the place of it and the amount of it. In all thy ways acknowledge Him. Acknowledge God as the source of our good, and then you’ll find that this inner wisdom will be reflected in our outer conduct.
We will be led to do the right thing at the right time, say the right things in the right place, even as the Master told the disciples not to take thought of what they should say when brought before the magistrate. Wait until they get there, open their mouths, and let God speak through them. That is acknowledging Him in that particular way.
Again, as the eleven disciples, meeting to elect the twelfth, they didn’t waste one moment in electing the twelfth. They turned right to God: “Father, show us whom Thou hast chosen. So they didn’t elect or chose. They let God, they acknowledged God as the one to fill up their ranks. So with us. In all our ways, we must bring God, this inner, Infinite Invisible into acknowledgement, and this brings it into outer expression.
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee. There we have it again. Instead of keeping our thoughts stayed on the problem, on how to get rid of it, how to overcome it, how to remove it, the perfect treatment is to keep the mind stayed on God.
And there again, you are living and moving, and having your being in God consciousness. As you realize God as the very soul and substance of your being, as you realize God as the very fount of all good, Omnipresence, Omnipotence, Omniscience, you will find that the outer demonstration is taken care of by that consciousness of truth. In other words, you cannot make the manna fall, and you cannot multiply the loaves and fishes, but if you keep your mind stayed on God, if you live and move and have your being in the conscious awareness of God’s presence, then at the moment that food should appear it will make the manna fall. It will multiply the loaves and fishes. It will send the ravens with the food.