Sunday Audio Files

Sunday Audio Files

Listen here to previous Sunday talks or download and take them with you on your phone or tablet. Rev. Pat Bessey’s follow-up messages, published with the audio files, provide additional insights and news about Unity Center for Spiritual Growth. Just click or tap on a title to reveal the audio player and message.

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If You Don’t Mind, It Doesn’t Matter

Sunday message by Rev. Pat Bessey

What a beautiful 4th of July weekend. I trust you had some downtime and fun!

At our community meeting on the 30th one of the suggestions we received was to add a response to the Prayer for Protection. We implemented that this past Sunday. Here is the new version we are experimenting with (responses in italic):

Prayer for Protection

The Light of God surrounds us!
We are the Light of God!

The Love of God enfolds us!
We are the Love of God!

The Power of God protects us!
We are the Power of God!

The Presence of God watches over us!
We are the Presence of God!

Wherever we are God is and all is well!
We are the Divine of God!

I would love to hear how it resonates with you.

The message this Sunday was the last in the series Minding the Mind. It was a series that was well received. The talk this week was “If You Don’t Mind, It Doesn’t Matter.” In a nutshell, what it was focused on is how our minds are liked crazed monkeys, jumping from one thought to another. If we are not vigilant and standing at the portal of our minds paying attention to the thoughts we are entertaining, we are on a downhill slope into the awfulizing of whatever is up in our lives.

Houston Smith, the author of World Religions, gives a very graphic description of what the mind is like. In this context, he is discussing the practices of the Hindu religion, particularly meditation.

“The motions of the average mind, say the Hindus, are about as orderly as those of a crazed monkey cavorting about its cage. Nay, more; like the prancing of a drunk, crazed monkey. Even so we have not conveyed its restlessness; the mind is like a drunken, crazed monkey that has St. Vitus’ Dance.”

He continues: “The mind is like a drunken crazed monkey with St. Vitus’ Dance who has just been stung by a wasp.

“Few who have seriously tried to meditate will find this metaphor extreme. The trouble with the advice to ‘leave your mind alone’ is the unimpressive spectacle that remains.

“I tell my hand to rise and it obeys. I tell my mind to be still and it mocks my command. How long can the average mind think about one thing – one thing only, without slipping first into thinking about that thing and taking off from there on a senseless chain of irrelevancies?

“About three and a half seconds, psychologists tell us. Like a ping-pong ball, the mind will alight where its owner directs it, but only to take off immediately on a jittery flight of staccato bounces that are completely out of hand.

“What if the mind could be turned from a ping-pong ball into a lump of dough, which when thrown sticks to a wall until deliberately removed? Would not its power increase if it could be thus held in focus? Would not its strength be compounded, like the strength of a light bulb when ringed by reflectors?…

“[and now quoting from the Upanishad, Smith says] ‘When all senses are stilled, when the mind is at rest, when the intellect wavers not – that, say the wise, is the highest state.’”

And that entire treatise by Smith was about meditation, which of course is a powerful, powerful tool for strengthening the mind.

However, in the moment when we can’t take the time to meditate on a particular challenge that we are experiencing, we can implement this tool.

Ask the question, “What would I love here?” I am going to leave you to listen to the message to find out why this question is so important. By the way, you will also want to hear the story of Jerry in the audio of today’s message.

Have a blessed week and join us next Sunday at the 10 a.m. service with our guest speaker and musician, Dennis Warner.

You are a blessing in my life.
Rev. Patricia Bessey

Your Mind is a Vessel

Sunday message by Rev. Pat Bessey

flagsWishing you a happy 4th of July!

On Sunday we held a community meeting that was well attended. We had a great sharing of what is working and what we can improve upon. I am happy to say the list of what is working far outweighed the improve-upon list.

We had a great conversation regarding raising giving consciousness within the community. The board realizes that education is an important element in raising consciousness and we opened the floor for ideas from those attending, and here is one that I am happy to say Spirit heard and provided almost instantaneously: The idea was to have in Heart Thought a mini prosperity lesson and, low and behold, last night while scrolling Facebook, I saw where Ros Goldsbrough, Licensed Unity Teacher (formerly from our ministry) was doing a prosperity series from Unity Co-founder Charles Fillmore’s book, Prosperity. After gaining permission from Ros, I am happy to say: Look in Heart Thoughts, our weekly email, each week for a prosperity infusion.

The message on Sunday was another in the series “Minding the Mind.” You may have heard the story of the Zen Master and Professor. The professor wants to learn about Zen teachings; however, as the Zen Master attempts to share, the professor keeps interrupting, being more interested in what he knows about the subject. I won’t tell the whole story in case you haven’t heard it; however, the line that is important is what the Zen Master says, “And can’t you see that when you are so filled with your own ideas that you cannot possibly HEAR new ones?”

Are our minds so filled with untruths that there is no room to hold the Truth when we hear it?

Ernest Holmes, founder of Science of Mind tells us:

“The mind is a magnet and we attract that with which we identify the self. In order to get the most out of life we must learn consciously to change many of our habitual thought patterns [in other words, empty the vessel]. This is not easy [well, I say may not be easy], for our old thought patterns cling to us with great tenacity, but, being thought patterns, they can be reversed.”

Holmes also said:

“We are all immersed in the atmosphere of our own thinking. This decides what shall take place in our lives.”

Henry Ford said:

“If you think you can or you think you can’t, you are right.”

Buddha said:

“All we are is the result of what we have thought.”

Jesus said:

“It is done unto you as you believe.”

These are very powerful statements, but what’s powerful is when we practice remembering their power.

Our minds are a gift from God, and when we think in constriction, we cut ourselves off from God’s power to give us ideas where the solutions can be found.

Listen to the message to see how a fourth-grade teacher helped her children identify how they constrict themselves from God’s power.

Next Sunday will be the last of this series, titled “If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”

You are a blessing in my life.
Rev. Patricia Bessey

Mind Over Matter

Bill Taylor

Sunday message by Rev. Pat Bessey

It has been a relatively quiet week at Unity Center for Spiritual Growth. However, yesterday our own Bill Taylor celebrated his 97th birthday… HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BILL! I have mentioned in the past, however, and it bears mentioning again, that Bill comes in every Sunday morning at about 8:30 and gets coffee going. He keeps the coffee carafes full for our consumption. He also mows the lawn every other week using the riding John Deere mower that he purchased for the church a few years ago. Bill is a model of how being in service keeps one connected and healthy. Bill, we love and appreciate you so much. Find him on Facebook and send him birthday wishes.

Sunday’s talk title was “Mind Over Matter.” Many on Sunday, as they were leaving, told me I was talking directly to them. I love when that happens. So you might just want to listen to the talk, as it may also be just what you need to hear.

Most of us have grown up hearing the phrase “mind over matter.” However, the message illustrated how that is not correct, it is really “mind as matter.”

Here are quotes from different New Thought writers confirming this:

In The Edinburgh Lectures, Thomas Troward said: “The universal mind is the creative power throughout Nature; and as the originating power it must… give rise to… various forms…”

In The Basic Ideas of Science of Mind, Ernest Holmes wrote: “There is but One Mind; It is Omnipresent – It is all there is. Everything, visible and invisible, is but a manifestation of this One Mind – the result of Its Creative Action and the becoming of that which It creates.”

In Talks on Truth, Charles Fillmore said: “Mind is not a thing; Mind is. It is that which, through orderly process, produces the thing. This orderly process, we have learned by observation, is from an invisible center to a visible circumstance. So, if anywhere in the universe you behold a form, you may know that within that form there is a potential center from which spring all its qualities.”

So it is not and never will be mind OVER matter, but mind AS matter whether that is Mind in the Capital “M”/Macrocosm/Big Picture sense or mind in the Lower Case “m”/microcosm/little picture sense.

Ernest Holmes, in Observations, says: “The universal creative Mind is the same mind you and I are using now and it is because of the unity of this Mind, the oneness, the indestructibility, the eternality, the changelessness of this Mind that we may be certain that our thought acts in and through this Mind in accord with the immutable Law of Cause and Effect. Therefore, it follows that if we set up a vibrating point at the center of our own thought receptive to that which is good, to that which is beautiful and true, we shall irresistibly be attracting that condition into our own environment.”

Mind/mind is always at work, always creating, always forming itself into matter. Whether it’s creating through our lives that which we desire depends on how we are using our piece of Mind and how we have trained it!

Einstein once said: “Everything is energy and that is all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want and you can’t help but get that reality. It can be no other way. That is not philosophy; it’s physics.”

Next week’s talk will be “Your Mind is a Vessel.” Have a great week!

You are a blessing in my life.
Rev. Patricia Bessey

Words of Wisdom from Dad

Sunday Message by Rev. Pat Bessey

A very special event happened this past Saturday… it was honoring our Sacred Service volunteers who serve on the 21 teams that serve our community. It was a beautiful day, and we had many beautiful people attend, and scrumptious food. We have 78 active volunteers, and we would love to have you be on this roster. Service is an act of devotion to God, and Gandhi said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” Please speak to me if you would like to join a team.

Sunday was Father’s Day, and did you know there are over 70 million fathers in the United States? Also did you know the campaign to celebrate the nation’s fathers did not meet with the same enthusiasm — perhaps because, as one florist explained, “fathers haven’t the same sentimental appeal that mothers have.”

On July 5, 1908, a West Virginia church sponsored the nation’s first event explicitly in honor of fathers, a Sunday sermon in memory of the 362 men who had died in the previous December’s explosions at the Fairmont Coal Company mines in Monongah, but it was a one-time commemoration and not an annual holiday.

William Jackson Smart was a twice-married, twice-widowed Civil War veteran and father of 14 children, one of whom dedicated her life to the creation of Father’s Day in honor of her devoted and selfless dad.

In Spokane, Washington, a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, the daughter of William Jackson Smart, tried to establish an official equivalent to Mother’s Day for male parents. She went to local churches, the YMCA, shopkeepers and government officials to drum up support for her idea, and she was successful: Washington State celebrated the nation’s first statewide Father’s Day on June 19, 1910.

Slowly, the holiday spread. In 1916, President Wilson honored the day by using telegraph signals to unfurl a flag in Spokane when he pressed a button in Washington, D.C. In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge urged state governments to observe Father’s Day.

I asked for help with my sermon by sharing some words of wisdom from dad… I have a great response.

Here are some that I didn’t share on Sunday:

• Kathleen McManus: My dad was a correctional officer in a prison and he would often say “people are still people and deserve to be treated kindly! They committed a crime but that is not who they are.”

• Terri Svendsen Hewitt: After asking a million times why there had to be people that did bad/mean/awful things, he told me everything in life serves a purpose, if even to serve as a bad example. He also changed his mind about things when he found out more information. I really respect this. He had a hard time with “illegal aliens” in Southern California until he met a man crossing the desert from Mexico. The man was hungry and dehydrated. He picked up the man and they went to the next town, where my dad bought him food and water. After talking to the man, he found that he just wanted a better life for his family, just like my immigrant grandparents did. He helped the man get to his destination. He told me they both could have been arrested, but he felt it was the right thing to do. I never heard him ever complain about “illegals” again.

• Judi Venturini: When I was about 17 my car spun in circles on a busy eight-lane expressway in Chicago because I broke too hard when everyone came to an abrupt stop during rush hour. I made at least 3 spins in a circle before I stopped. Amazingly I hit nothing, but I was shook. I wanted my dad to drive, and he said, “Absolutely not. Get in that seat and drive, or else you will never drive and give up when life has you spinning.”

Listen to this week’s audio to hear more stories about dads.

To the men reading this, come on Friday to the Men’s Gathering celebrating the summer solstice and spend some quality time with other men. Food, fellowship and fire circle!

Next Sunday I will be talking about “Mind Over Matter.”

You are a blessing in my life.
Rev. Patricia Bessey