We are the maker of our own bondage. We need only realize that we hold the key to the shackles that imprison us. The key is our power of choice. Though his feelings belie the words that he is saying, his freedom lies in the marvelous power to choose.
Many people unconsciously follow their feelings unaware of the great gift they have in their ability to choose. One can choose in spite of his feelings, and what he chooses will become the dominant inner pattern of his thought.
We can choose to believe that illnesses are basically unreal, but the pain, distress, and symptoms are real. What’s the use of trying to delude ourselves? The symptoms cannot be denied. They exist in spite of what we say. These are valid points, are they not? Yes they are, but this is giving into feelings, forgetting that they are much less real than that which reason speaks.
Our feelings are largely a matter of habit. Feeling follows action rather than precedes it. Man’s surface or conscious mind includes reason and selection. Our deeper or subconscious mind is the seat of our emotions and feeling. Our feelings about anything are the ultimate result of our choices regarding them. We all ultimately come to feel the way we act. We must act the way we believe – or we will eventually come to believe the way we act.
We are not victims of fate and illness is not an inescapable nemesis. All of us can make good, attract love and get what we want from life; to think otherwise molds our thoughts to create the opposite. Years of this kind of thought sets the mold for one’s thinking. In this mold our feelings about life develop. These feelings rarely represent who we really are. When we become discouraged by loss, illness, and disappointment we begin to believe this is to be our life. A lie believed will act as though it were true. We can decide to choose a different thought mold but our feelings don’t necessarily get right on board with us. We often even submit to them and are led right back down the same path.
We can free ourselves. Many find this hard to believe, even when it is the very thing we want most in the world. We may think, “Who am I that I should escape the uncertainties of life?” or, “I deserve this outcome, just look at all the bad decisions I have made in my life.” We must expand our vision far enough to see that the ties that bind us can be dissolved by that of the Infinite Healing Presence. Our belief in this Presence can dissolve the ropes of habit into their native nothingness and replace them with ties of inner conviction of the good, the beautiful, the true. Of this you can be certain.
Understanding the nature of our feelings, we make a deliberate choice to build a new set of feelings. Since feelings follow action, our first action will be the selection of a belief that God intends us to be happy, and completely integrated within ourself. Then we will never give voice to any idea of the contrary. We may slip at times, we are human. But the chief thing is that we have chosen to follow what we believe to be a workable premise. Our dominance of thought and our conversation, moving forward, will be on the expectancy of good and our feelings will gradually come to rally behind this newly cultivated belief.
Fifty years of negative thinking does not take fifty years to reverse. It can come quickly. Seven days of this new attitude will have started the pattern. We will experience joy and delight at our brighter attitudes. It will be like living in a new world because this is what it is, it is the world of the spirit. The next stage is action. We will act out the part of the person we wish to be. We will no longer commiserate with ourselves or talk about our failures or illnesses. From thought, to action, to belief; this is the divine order in which we now choose.