The gospel of Jesus is a gospel of living and doing. If it were not this it would not voice the Eternal Truth. Its Temple is Purified Conduct, the entrance-door to which is Self-surrender. It invites men to shake off sin, and promises, as a result, joy and blessedness and perfect peace.
The Kingdom of Heaven is perfect trust, perfect knowledge, perfect peace…no sin can enter therein, no self-born thought or deed can pass its golden gates; no impure desire can defile its radiant robes…all may enter it who will, but all must pay the price—the unconditional abandonment of self.
I say this—and know it to be truth—that circumstances can only affect you in so far as you allow them to do so. You are swayed by circumstances because you have not a right understanding of the nature, use, and power of thought. You believe (and upon this little word belief hang all our joys and sorrows) that outward things have the power to make or mar your life; by so doing you submit to those outward things, confess that you are their slave, and they your unconditional master. By so doing you invest them with a power which they do not of themselves possess, and you succumb, in reality not to the circumstances, but to the gloom or gladness, the fear or hope, the strength of weakness, which your thought-sphere has thrown around them.
More from James Allen
James Allen was a little-known philosophical writer and poet. He is best recognized for his book, As a Man Thinketh. Allen wrote about complex subjects such as faith, destiny, love, patience, and religion but had the unique ability of explaining these subjects clearly and in a way that is easy to understand. He often wrote about cause and effect, sowing and reaping, as well as overcoming sadness, sorrow, and grief. For more information on the life of James Allen, click here.