Here are some thoughts about change, which will be our overall theme this Sunday morning at 10:00 in our Gathering at the Center for Progressive Therapies, 192 Hartford Road in Manchester CT. Hope to see many of you there!
T]he appointed time has grown short; from now on, let even those who have wives be as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no possessions, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away” (1 Corinthians 7:29-31).
Interpretations of this passage from Paul have most often focused on its opening statement: “The appointed time has grown short.” Paul did, indeed, believe that the world was in its final days at the time he was writing. It wasn’t—at least not as he expected it. And believers in every generation since have been convinced that the verse was speaking directly to them, and they were going to witness “the appointed time.” There are those today who are convinced that ‘the appointed time’ is at hand; just Google it!
I think the Truth of this familiar passage lies in its final sentence. “The present form of this world” is always passing away, as our collective spiritual awareness continues to expand. There’s nothing to wait for, and nothing to fear. We may try to hang onto our present, familiar forms, and the only result will be a kind of rope burn in consciousness as those forms shift, dissolve and move us eternally forward.
Paul’s valuable advice, then, is to ‘deal with the world as though we had no dealings with it.’ We are, as Jesus taught, to be ‘in the world but not of it’—fully present to this mortal experience as we live it, without hanging onto anything but the eternal Truth that is our true identity.
Those thoughts that try to prevent us from remembering and exploring our spiritual Truth don’t really need to be defeated; ‘Change’ is the essence of Spirit, just as ‘hanging on’ is the ego mind fearfully trying to be in control. If we appreciate change as a perfect expression of spiritual Truth, we will know ourselves to be comfortable and joyfully blessed every time the ‘present forms’ change yet again.
I notice the changing forms of this world with confidence and enthusiasm, certain that my spiritual Truth will ensure that I AM always safely centered in my spiritual Self.