While on vacation in Winter Park, Colorado, I sit surrounded by vibrant flowers in the cool mountain air, watching the gentle dance of the aspen leaves. Mentally I ponder what Jesus sought to teach us about prosperity. In John 10:10 he said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” I notice the ego-self within me that desires to create something that will bless those who read it. Fulfilling my task—really a means to an end, a checkmark on my to-do list—could be the thief. When I let go, I realize that the blessing is already here, growing from the work of those who have written for this issue. It shines forth from the sweet revelation of their wisdom, sharing the beauty of the dance of their years of learning and understanding.
Be sure to take time to smell the flowers of each of the articles in the Fall 2011 quarter: learn to teach prosperity from one of our Unity masters, Edwene Gaines; practice our principles with Toni Boehm’s “Creating Intentional Prosperity”; discover the power of evolving from pastor-centered to community-centered ministry with Deidre Ashmore; learn the importance of balance in “Church as a Spiritual Business” by Mary Masters; read about experiences of teaching and learning prosperity with Heidi Alfrey. In this issue, Linda Martella-Whitsett also shares how tithing leads to appreciation, and you will find many additional, valuable resources and ideas to help support you and your ministry.
Looking at Jesus’ words “ἦλθον” means “I am come,” and “περισσὸν” literally means “may have abundance.” Our teacher says, “I am come,” so that we “may have abundance.” Not just survival or getting a job done, but literally, that we may have abundance or that which abounds. The word denotes not what’s essential, but that which is added to make life fulfilling. Not simple, bare existence, but that we shall experience life that is eminently blessed and happy. The Christ within comes for us to experience a life of eternal joy and peace.
The essence of prosperity is living in the state of being blessed. This not only focuses on having, but also being. Things can help support the being but the feeling of being abundantly alive is an experience. This is prosperity: being, giving, receiving; open to experiencing the beauty of the fullness of our God-created life.