The demonstration of getting to Association this year is worth sharing, as it involved overcoming waves of personal sense which tried to argue that I wasn’t up for the trip nor did I want to make the effort. All of which was, and is, completely wrong.
Yet the negative suggestions seemed endless: Life is comfortable at home, money is too tight, there was no place to stay despite numerous efforts, I don’t yet have new healings to report, I have little interest in seeing friends or even in reading the citations, and so on. The arguments appeared to feed off a depressed and self-absorbed state of thought, even though I greatly treasure attending Association and have been busy with gratifying work in our branch church in recent months.
One truth that helped cut through this was simply knowing that I am always in my right place, which is the realm of Spirit, Love’s place of activity and purposefulness. In recent years, this constant almost daily affirmation about “place” has allowed me to take steps and be in places where new activities and opportunities opened up, even when the prospects seemed absent, sometimes literally on the other side of the world.
About 10 days before Association, as a reader in our branch church, I did readings for a Wednesday meeting on the subject of “spiritual identity vs. personality.” It was inspired by an editorial by David Kennedy in the Sentinel titled “Knowing who we are.” (CSS November 3, 2014)
The readings came together nicely and were well received. (There is much in our textbook about true identity and the perils of material personality.) We had unusually good attendance that night with some helpful testimonies. Arriving home after the meeting, I felt strengthened in the right purpose of attending Association and saw more clearly that the self-depreciating arguments against it were an imposition of aggressive suggestions and not justified. They were just personal sense having a conversation with itself, and I did not need to listen or identity with them.
Among other things, this gave me the inspiration and courage to email some friends I had not been in touch with for some time about the possibility of staying with them during Association weekend. The next morning I had a warm response welcoming me to stay and to be in the midst of right activity that would be a blessing all around, including for my hosts as I was able to help them manage a busy household during the days before and after.
I know this sounds like a simple thing, but the resistance to coming to Association this year seemed quite real and even overwhelming at times. It took a strong outpouring of truth with flood tides of loving testimonies from our church members to help extract the error (see Science and Health, p. 201). Each step has needed to be the outcome of prayer with facing down some physical challenges as part of the demonstration, too.