All things are possible?

A student asks:

We have discussions about how the laws of nature are principles set forth by God which cannot be “bent” in response to our desires, yet we hear so many people say “with God all things are possible.” I’m having trouble reconciling the two ideas.

This is an excellent question, and we’ll do our best to add some perspective. In Divine Metaphysics, we follow the premise that “Natural Law is that law which God (as Infinite Intelligence) has set in motion to govern all things in being. It is immutable and unchangeable and we know of no instance where God has set aside that law in response to human appeal nor suspended the law for any other reason.”

That lengthy definition simply means that the Universe is designed to operate a certain way, and we can’t change it.

The definition originates from the philosophy of Spiritualism to help explain some of the miraculous things that we sometimes observe. The idea is that they aren’t “miracles” at all. A miracle is simply something that occurs that we can’t explain.

When we don’t understand the science behind how something works, it seems miraculous. It doesn’t mean it’s a miracle. For example, if you drop a rock and it were to fall sideways, it wouldn’t make sense to you. Rocks are supposed to fall straight down – that’s how gravity works. But if you drop a feather and it blows sideways, you don’t think twice about it. If a rock falls in an unusual way, it’s not a miracle. It means that some force governed by the laws of nature is counteracting the law of gravity to cause the rock to move a different way, just like the feather.

Another example to consider: There are literally millions of conversations and pictures traveling through the air around us. Somehow, our devices consistently know exactly which ones to pick up and translate them into sound so you can hear or see it. Many years ago, it would seem unthinkable. Even now, if you think about it, it’s still seems kind of miraculous, right? We don’t understand how it all happens, but still it happens.

Now to the other half of the idea that “with God, all things are possible.” I tend to put a little asterisk after the statement, because “all things” are subject to natural law. It might be more accurate to say, “All things are possible within the laws of nature.” Anything happening outside of the law, which by definition isn’t possible, would be “supernatural.” The things that we perceive as supernatural are still happening within the bounds of Natural Law, but beyond our level of understanding. Yes, that includes spirits and unexplained phenomena: all part of nature, and thereby part of God’s realm.

Just because something doesn’t seem possible, doesn’t mean it isn’t. Just because something seems miraculous doesn’t mean it really is. We just perceive things a certain way based on our current level of understanding.

This long answer simply means that if it’s possible for something to happen, it can happen, even if it’s not something we expect or understand. It also means we can’t beg and plead our way into manifesting things that are not possible.

We could pray all day for the sun to shine purple, but based on our current understanding, we know it probably won’t happen. Yet, if there is some condition under which it is possible for sunlight to appear purple to our eyes, then we can’t rule out the possibility. It might seem miraculous, but still we would know that it’s a phenomenon of nature causing it to happen. If there is no natural way for the sun to shine purple, it never will, no matter how hard we wish for it to happen.

A more practical way for us to deal with our frustrations and desires is to focus on what serves our highest good. Remember, what we want is not always what we need. By focusing on what serves our highest good, we accept the natural things that happen around us, whether they meet our expectations or not. Instead of dwelling on the mechanics, we take time to understand the purpose they serve, and the lessons that come out of them.

It doesn’t matter whether we understand how something works (or doesn’t). It’s more important to realize that so much IS possible, and that we can always work toward manifesting the most positive and inspiring outcomes through our actions and intent. And sometimes, those little “miracles” are simply a confirmation that we’re doing the right thing!