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Are we aging or refining?

From the September 1981 issue of The Christian Science Journal

If we anchor ourselves to a mortal past, recording and celebrating the passage of time, then we are courting the belief that we are aging, hourly. But the more grateful we are to God, divine Love, the more we'll see that He is eternally giving all good—every spiritual quality and idea. In this way, divine Love enables us to prove progressively that we are indeed His children. At every stage of our experience we can happily dedicate our lives to refining—that is, to showing forth more clearly the likeness of our loved God.

To refine is to free from faults, flaws, and imperfections; to restore to a state of purity. God's man, the manifestation of His nature (His knowing, seeing, being) has no need of refining. But until we reach total understanding, we must refine—that is, develop such understanding. And always the standard before us must be the perfect, spiritual expression that has its origin in God.

"God creates man perfect and eternal in His own image," Mrs. Eddy writes. "Hence man is the image, idea, or likeness of perfection—an ideal which cannot fall from its inherent unity with divine Love, from its spotless purity and original perfection."The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, p. 262. As God's reflection, we have eternal unity with Him—just as cause and effect are inseparable. But until we wake from the dream of having finite, personal lives—and yes, wake to understand why man has never really dreamed—we must remove whatever would seem to hide the true selfhood that expresses God.