October 16, 1916
Received by James Padgett
I am here, St. Luke, of the New Testament.
I desire to write my promised message, and if you feel that you can receive it, I will try to write. Well, I desire to declare certain truths with reference to the necessity for men turning their thoughts to things spiritual and letting the material things of life consume less of their time and thoughts.
In the first place, that which is eternal is of more importance than that which is temporal and has an existence for a short time only, even though these things of time are necessary to sustain and preserve man while living his life on earth.
I would not be understood as implying that these material things are not necessary and important for man to acquire and use to the best possible advantage, for they are a necessity to his earth existence, and it is not only a privilege but a duty for man to make the best use of these material gifts that is possible, and to place himself in that condition which will enable him to enjoy to the utmost these things that have been provided for his material comfort and happiness.
And further, it is his duty to bend his efforts to develop the use and application of these things, so that the greatest possible benefit and utility may be derived from the proper use of them. And to do this, I understand that man has to give a portion of his thoughts, and devote a part of his time to their consideration, and to the means and methods by which the best results may be brought about, and in doing this man is not disobedient to the Father's laws, or to the requirements which the laws of his own being calls for.
The discoveries of the inventors are desirable and men's work in making these discoveries is commendable, and so are efforts of the merchant and mechanic and financiers to succeed in their different undertakings and as a result accumulate money and use it for their comfort and sustenance. But these things, or the thoughts and efforts used to accomplish these results, do not help the soul development, or even the development of the spiritual side of man's nature, and if man devotes himself for the greater number of his hours of living to these pursuits, when he comes to lay these burdens down and pass into the land of spirits, he will find that he is very poor, indeed, and that the eternal part of his being has little developed, and his soul fitted for a place where those who have laid up their riches on earth must necessarily go.
So attractive is this accumulation of money, and the gaining of fame or position to man, that when once engaged in, and especially when accompanied with what he calls success, he naturally devotes his whole waking time and thoughts to these efforts and, as a consequence, very little of this short time on earth is given to thoughts of and striving for things of the higher kind.
If mortals, and especially those who are so arduously and constantly engaged in the effort to win the success that I have just mentioned, could only see and know the condition of those who when on earth were engaged in similar pursuits with like aspirations, and who are now in the spirit world, they would realize the utter futility of such efforts, and the great soul-killing harm that the so-called success on earth has brought to these spirits.
And while we may assume that many of these spirits did not do affirmative wrong or injury in their work and did not enter into the condition to which I refer because of any such among or injury, yet they are in a stagnated and shriveled condition of soul and spiritual qualities, and all because when - in their earnest pursuits of these material things - they neglected the development of their souls or the cultivation of their spiritual qualities.
Their sin was that of omission and it is a sure one in its results, and the more common one among men who think too much of material things, or think not at all or are indifferent to everything, and are satisfied to live in an atmosphere or state of vegetating contentment. The law operates the same upon the man who neglects his spiritual nature because of his absorption in the things material as upon the man who is guilty of such neglect because of indifference, or contentment with the pleasures that these material things give him. In both cases the results are the same - the soul remains stagnant and the spiritual qualities lie dormant; and the man of such neglect will find his place in the spirit world to be one of darkness and suffering.
Life is short and time is fleeting, even though a man may live his allotted time of three score and ten years, and there is no place in all God's universe where it is so important that man should start on his way to eternal progress as in the earth life. There the soul should have its awakening and be fed with thoughts and strivings for the things spiritual. When the start is, thus, made on earth, it is so much easier for the continuous progress of the soul in the spirit world, if not the awakening may be delayed for years, and the progress which follows it may be and generally is very slow.
So I say, let men not devote so much of their time to those things which are of time only, and while they remain in the world of time until the mortal becomes a spirit.
Thoughts are things and when applied to man's spiritual development, they are things of the most vital importance. A little thought may start a soul to a dormant, hardly living state, or cause it to grow and increase into a thing of beauty and harmony with the spiritual possibilities of its possessor. And as it has been said, where your treasures are, there will your heart be also, so also will your thoughts that turn man's soul into darkness or light.
So with all my love, I will say, good night.
Your brother in Christ,