by Evelyn F. Heywood
To know what God’s purpose is and to obey it has been the prayer of humanity. The Bible states, “The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand…For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” Here is the divine decree against everything that opposes itself to the will of God.
God’s purpose can’t be interfered with or stopped. His arm isn’t even temporarily turned back. There’s never a weakening of divine power, no lessening of divine Love.
We lose the blessings it is God’s purpose to give us when we see creation as material, needing material wisdom and strength to preserve it, material possessions for its enjoyment, material policies for its government. We fail because human goodness, pitted against evil, can never succeed. The good that is inspired and directed by God is confident and victorious, because it knows how to annul evil’s purpose. It never turns, but rises up vigorous and undismayed, no matter what tests its faith and fortitude.
Jesus’ purpose was to teach men the nature of God’s perfect creation, invincible, eternal, a kingdom of heaven not far off, but within man.
As we are inspired with one holy purpose, to know and do the will of God, we demonstrate a sense of direction, of opportunity, fulfillment, and an inner peace, which is the presence of spiritual power. Selfish ambition may promise temporary success and satisfaction, but disillusionment will inevitably come. For such things God’s arm is not stretched out. Often people’s lives are purposeless, stalled, frustrated, depressed with a sense of their own failures and sorrows. They look everywhere for something which will open their prison doors.
First, in the prayer for deliverance is the need to see that the only purpose which will never be frustrated, is the one that seeks to bless not only itself, but all mankind. With this goal in view people can rise with fearless determination to cast out the temptations and weaknesses which would delay and undermine the majesty and beauty of the fulfillment of God’s purpose.
Mrs. Eddy tells us, “The entire purpose of true education is to make one not only know the truth, but live it—to make one enjoy doing right, make one not work in the sunshine and run away in the storm, but work midst clouds of wrong, injustice, envy, hate; and wait on God, the strong deliverer, who will reward righteousness and punish iniquity.” (My.) No one can evade or thwart the divine purpose. It won’t be fulfilled by passive waiting or objective thinking. Impelled and inspired by the mightiness of the Word, we can understand its meaning and feel its presence. Its preserving law and outstretched hand are here for us all. What God has purposed shall never cease being in continuous operation; it will stand, no matter whatever else may totter and fall.
As we are impelled by the divine purpose, and perceive the truth, we prove it by putting it into practice, so that we can work “midst clouds of wrong, injustice, envy, hate,” untroubled and unafraid.
All inferior purposes fall away, or become purified and exalted, in this glorious task of inspiring humanity with trust in the God who alone is trustworthy. He who understands this, and has no other trusts, knows also that these words are true: “Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” (Isaiah 14:24)