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“Come to him, a living stone … chosen and precious in God’s sight.”
1 Peter 2:4
A long time ago in a kingdom far away, there lived a young prince who had just turned 21 years of age. His name was Prince Peter. He longed so for a bride. He asked his parents, “Is it time, right now, for me to get married?”
His mother, the Queen, who was a very kindly queen said, “Yes, I guess it is. But make sure that the girl you choose is a princess – a real princess.”
So, the search began. They began looking all over the kingdom for a real princess. Many young women came to the castle, but the Queen was not interested in them because not one could prove that she was a real princess.
One day there was quite a storm that came over the kingdom. It was the type of storm where the rain came down in buckets and the lightning flashed across the sky. Out of all this sound that was going on outside, there was a tapping at the castle door.
The King and Queen looked up and asked each other, “Did you hear anything?”
Prince Peter said, “I think that somebody is outside the door.”
They opened up the big door to the castle. Standing out there was a small, soaking wet young woman. She looked up and said, “Hello. I have come because I am a real princess.”
She didn’t look like a real princess. She was soaking wet. Her clothes were just hanging on her. Her soaking wet hair was hanging down in her face.
But the Queen said, “Come in, my dear. Tonight, we won’t worry about whether you’re a real princess or not. We’re going to get you dried off. After you’ve had a good night’s sleep, we’ll decide if you’re a real princess or not.”
Then, the Queen called over the head chambermaid and said, “Do exactly as I say. I want you to put a small, dried pea right in the middle of the bed. Then, on top of that small, dried pea, I want you to put 20 of our softest feather mattresses.”
The chambermaid did exactly as she said. When the young woman went into the room after her bath, she had to look up at the bed because all of these mattresses practically went to the ceiling. (She did not know about the small, dried pea underneath them all.) So, she climbed up a step ladder and got into the center of the bed.
While she was sleeping, all the servants were busy drying and ironing her clothes. The next morning when she got up and came down to breakfast, she looked more like a princess than anyone that they had seen. She was beautiful.
The Queen looked up and said, “My dear, how did you sleep?”
The young woman said, “Well, I do not mean to be impolite, but I didn’t sleep a wink. No matter which way I turned, I felt a lump in the middle of the bed. I tossed and turned all night long.”
The Queen looked at Prince Peter and Prince Peter looked at the Queen … but he was looking more at the young princess by now. Soon they were married, and they lived happily ever after.
You’ve read this story before about the small, dried up pea in the middle of the bed and the 20 feather mattresses on top of that pea, and how no one could feel a small, dried up pea.
This is not a story about a vegetable in the middle of a bed. This is a story about something that we “think” is hidden deep inside of us. The small, dried-up pea is really a small, dried-up thought, and the old anger, or an ancient resentment.
We have tried to cover-up that thought because it initially hurt us. So, we’ve pushed it down and covered it up with layers upon layers of years. But there are still times when you’re tossing and turning all night long and you can’t sleep and you don’t even know why, but, that small, dried-up pea sized thought is still inside of you.
It’s still there, and it’s still pushing out. It’s still affecting you. You don’t really even know what it is anymore because it is has been pushed so far down, for so long.
But what is pushed down, pushes up. It is like trying to hold the beach ball underneath the water the further you push it down, the harder it tries to pop back up.
You see, we are taught early to repress thoughts. We are taught in childhood that if it really hurts us, don’t face it now; just suppress it, push it down, and it will hurt less. That is error thinking. Actually that thing bubbles up all the time, pushes out all the time, and it hurts us constantly, probably affecting our health.
Well, the princess couldn’t rest. She felt discomfort. The princess was royalty.
That’s interesting because you, too, are royalty. You may not feel like royalty because you’ve had lots of small, dried-up pea error thoughts inside of you that tell you otherwise. But you are royalty.
On what authority do I say that? On the authority of the Jesus Christ teachings.
Jesus said, “You are a child of God.” You are a king. The only thing that keeps us from accepting that fully in our awareness – is our awareness – of the small, dried-up error thoughts that are inside of us. These small, outdated thoughts make us think that we are less than we are. They make us uncomfortable during the day, and often make us toss and turn at night.
The gift of God is rest; a mental cleansing that gives a good night’s sleep. The gift of God is a confidence from deep within to allow you to do things that you wouldn’t dream that you could do.
The gift of God is that extra foundation strength that is inside of you that is firm; that you know that you can stand on when you’re facing some adversity.
All life outside of you is an echo. Remember the images of the person standing on one mountain and shouting and then the echo would come back? Well, all life outside of you is an echo of everything that is inside of you in your awareness.
Even the small, dried-up thoughts, (the old, error thoughts that we should have cleansed out long ago), are STILL in there. They have a small voice, but it comes back many times magnified over. Every thought inside of our heads is like a seed. It can grow into something that is way, way out of proportion as the years go on if we give it the power.
There is a wonderful story that author Emmett Fox talks about a big old bear going into a campground. This big old bear is hungry. He sees a cast iron pot on the fire. The lid is just dancing because of all the heat. The bear licks his chops.
He comes into the campground and puts his arms around the kettle. And interesting thing happens next. That bear is scalded and burned so badly. The normal thing to do would be to scream and to drop the kettle. But a bear’s only defense is hugging. So, as the kettle begins to hurt the bear, he does the one thing that it can do … it hugs the kettle tighter, to the undoing of the bear.
But, you know, we do the same thing. When something hurts us, we push that back down fast so that it is not in our face. In doing that, it can live inside of us to come up another day.
You know, these thoughts are like the bubbles in Seven-Up. They continually bubble up. That is the grace of human consciousness. We have the chance to deal with those thoughts again to get them, before they get us.
These thoughts will continue to come up. And as they do, we have the opportunity to eliminate them.
Let’s look to what Jesus Christ says about the inside of you and what we should do with these small, dried-up thoughts.
In Matthew 23, [verses 25-26], Jesus Christ says, “Woe to you scribes and Pharisees for you cleanse the outside of the cup and the plate, but the inside is full of extortion and rapacity [covetous]. You blind Pharisee. First cleanse the inside of the cup and of the plate, that the outside also may be clean.”
What is He talking about here? Is He teaching humankind throughout all ages how to be clean? Is He teaching humankind throughout all ages how to do dishes? No. He’s talking about the human condition and He’s talking about your mind.
He’s talking about how we go through so much time putting on our suits and ties and combing our hair and doing everything we need to do to groom ourselves, but we forget about the cleansing of our human mind. It is too very important. Truthfully, it is more important than the exterior. The exterior will take care of itself once the inside is clean.
The second part of that teaching is talking about the exterior of all of your life. We spend so much time trying to clean that up. If we cleaned up the inside of us, the whole outside would be clean.
The Bible goes on. In verse 27 [of Matthew] Jesus says, “For you are like whitewashed tombs which outwardly appear beautiful, but within they are full of dead men’s bones and uncleanliness.” We have a lot of old, dead ideas inside of us. It’s time, once and for all, to cleanse those out of our consciousness.
I’m going to share with you the same teaching, but from a different Gospel. Jesus is told that he approached this from a slightly different way, clarifying the teaching even more. [Luke 11:39-40]. “And the Lord said to him, now you Pharisees, cleanse the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are full of extortion and wickedness. You fools. Did not he who made the outside make the inside also?”
Often we have a person ask, what is blocking me, what is wrong? Everything on the outside can look perfect but yet there is a deep dissatisfaction that is hidden.
God can heal our bodies. But God can also heal what is deep inside of you. Pray to God to completely wash the inside of your cup. Some pray for God to heal their depression, their emotional state. Some feel in the blues today because of old thoughts that are inside churning around, God made the inside of you also and God can heal that once and for all. It’s a HUGE thing to you, but nothing to God. Just ask for and accept an inside healing.
Jesus goes on and tells us how to do it. He said, “Give for alms those things which are within, and behold everything is clean for you.”
What does it mean to ‘give for alms?’ It means to give freely. When those old things come up, instead of pushing them down because they hurt us, give up freely and let those old thoughts be gone once and for all.
When they come up we have the opportunity to examine those thoughts. We have a choice. Our choice is cleansing or pushing down again and re-polluting.
Once upon a time there was a giant Maytag washing machine as big as this room. It cleaned clothes beautifully. But when it went into the spin cycle and started to drain out its water, it pumped it back into the machine the dirty water instead of draining it out, and dirtied the clothes again with the dirty water.
We do the same with soiled memories; we have an opportunity to eliminate these old thoughts when they come up.
Old anger thoughts often push up and out as illness in the body, sluggishness and fatigue.
Thoughts occupy space; you might not think that that tiny, dried-up old thought inside of you is going to come through all those layers of the years. But they do.
A man bought a brand-new trash can for his house. He always put the trash in bags and tied them tightly.
Yet, when he opened the lid, it would almost knock him over with the smell. He couldn’t understand why. Finally, he got brave enough to stick his head in that trash can and look around. He found a little piece of rotten banana peel about the size of a dime.
You might think, “Well, I have so many good thoughts inside of my mind. But occasionally one of those old thoughts creeps up. Surely, if I push that back down and don’t deal with it, it won’t hurt the rest of the thoughts because I’m getting more good thoughts all the time.”
One small thought inside can pollute you we must also do a mental housecleaning.
You have dominion! You have dominion over every thought inside of your head. It is not the other way around. You have dominion. Take the reins of those out-of-control thoughts. Every night before going to bed, deal with the thoughts that have not been up to the Christ standard about you that day. Simply say, “NO!”
I’m going to close today’s talk with these words from Romans 12:2:
Do not be conformed to this world BUT BE TRANSFORMED by the renewing of your mind. that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect of God.
There were lots of other princesses that slept on that bed. They probably didn’t have a good night’s sleep either. But they didn’t want to admit it. Therefore, they didn’t get to marry the prince. We are in this life to become better on the inside; it is our hidden curriculum, but it will also reflect for all to see.
It is time to stop tossing and turning. Start enjoying life. Life is a joy. Live each day that way.
Let us pray, right now, and begin the process.
In prayer, I talk to the deep areas inside of me, seeking a renewed life through a renewing of my mind. I speak directly to any lodged error thought. To that error in our thinking, I say “I call upon God’s help to evict you.
You are welcome no more. You can no longer hurt me.”
We have imprisoned thoughts that are thieves that rob us still. To those thoughts we say: I release and let them go. To those thoughts I decree that you have vanished into nothingness.
Dear God, I ask that old embedded thoughts will come up and out so that I have an opportunity to examine each. I am now empowered and strengthened by God during this process. Old thoughts, as they come up, are disarmed
and defenseless. They have no power to hurt us.
Old thoughts are subservient to our command. We are empowered by this process. We smile again in areas of our life where we have not smiled in ages.
The process begins now. We walk with God through the recesses of our mind.
The cleansing and renewal are at hand.
We say, Thank you, God!
In Jesus Christ’s name … Amen.
God Bless You!
PRAYER / MEDITATION_______________________
God is here. God is your help in every need.
Realize now, in prayer, that nothing is too small or too insignificant to merit God’s help. Most of us do not hesitate to seek God’s help in the big problems of our lives. But often we do not think about seeking God in the small and everyday occurrences.
We are here today to remember to put God first in our life. God is life, love, wisdom, intelligence, peace, order, substance and power within and around you. A problem, no matter how small or how large, is an area of life in which a greater expression of God is needed.
Rest in the presence of God in the silence of prayer …
God is the only true help and answer to our every need, no matter what it is, where it is, or when it occurs.
All of us have had days when we have felt that we got up on the wrong side of the bed. All of our activities have seemed to be out of rhythm. We have dropped things. We have rushed around accomplishing nothing.
We have blundered through these days saying, “It’s just one of those days.”
On such days, there is a need for order and harmony in our thinking, our feeling and in our acting. We need to stop, relax and turn our attention to God. We need to recognize that God is our help right now in this need, because God is perfect order.
Rest in the silence of prayer …
As we let Divine order fill our thinking, feeling and acting, our environment takes on a harmonious rhythm. By accepting God’s help in our seemingly small tasks, our day is transformed into an orderly, happy day.
Through the power of the spoken word, we decree: I AM ONE WITH GOD, AND WITH A DIVINE SENSE OF ORDER. I AM CALM AND POISED. GOD’S ORDER IS MANIFEST IN MY LIFE AND IN ALL THAT CONCERNS ME.
Accept this Truth about you now in the silence of prayer …
Proverbs 3:6 says, “In all your ways, acknowledge God and God will make straight your paths.”
No matter what need confronts you, recognize that it is a need for a greater expression of God. Then, accept. Accept God’s help that is already here.
As you accept God’s help in every aspect of your life, your life becomes orderly, joyous and productive.
Decree: I AM ONE GOD, AND WITH A DIVINE SENSE OF ORDER. I AM CALM AND POISED. GOD’S ORDER IS MANIFEST IN MY LIFE AND IN ALL THAT CONCERNS ME.
It is so. It is right. Rest in the silence of prayer …
Following Jesus Christ, we accept this as true for us right now, in our life, today.
Thank you, God … Amen.
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