[tmtranscripts] Ham on being thankful

David Schlundt david.schlundt at vanderbilt.edu
Mon May 3 08:25:29 PDT 2004


Ham: Greetings, children, I am Ham and I am happy to be among you again
this evening. This evening, let us discuss the effects of thanksgiving
on the soul.

When one is thankful for anything one's soul takes on a particular
attitude. This attitude aids in humility, meekness, and grace. Being
filled with thanksgiving is also preparatory for being filled with
praise for God. This then opens the soul to worship, the sublime
experience of loving God and receiving his love at once.

Worship is an experience of love which uplifts and transforms the soul.
It is experiencing love purely, not as loving or receiving love, but as
being love. Worship is a state of the soul transcending time and space.
It is a state wherein the creature and creator merge as one, a state
wherein the great I AM is tasted and eternity felt. Thanksgiving
prepares the soul. It is a method of making soul adjustments to God. One
can recognize the great benefits of thanksgiving and begin to give
thanks consistently through dedication to the Father's will.

Many times the things we perceive as disasters and the things we
perceive as blessings over time are revealed to be just the opposite.
The set backs of today are preparatory. They can allow some time for the
soul to become more prepared, some time for wisdom to grow. Set backs
and reversals should be the first things one gives thanks for, and yet
this is just when it is hardest to muster. And yet, if you can marshal
your strength of character to give thanks at the low points of your
life, you will find the way out of those low points much easier to bear.

Q: So you stay in positive polarity?

Ham: Yes. You are correct.

By the time the Master embarked on his public mission, he was so used to
treating every circumstance as an opportunity that he saw no real set
backs to his mission, even unto death. When all around him were
despairing, he was thinking of others. Of himself he knew with absolute
certainty that he was in the Father's hands, even while enduring the
most inhuman treatment at the hands of humans.

My children, it would be well for you each to constantly practice the
attitudes of humility and thanksgiving. No matter how bleak the outlook,
train yourselves to thank the Father for his gifts. Ask yourselves if
this in not a beautiful life, regardless of the ups and downs, the
losses, the illnesses, the reversals, and all the ways that the world
can tear at the soul and destroy the confidence.

During this life, the soul is in a constant process of birth. Your soul
is developing and it is growing throughout your lives. Each additional
day you spend on this planet is worth many years of training, for this
life contains the ingredients for especially concentrated experience.
Your will and emotional stamina are tested constantly. Your character is
continually being molded by circumstance and your response to these
circumstances. It is true that no matter how harsh this life seems to be
while you are living, you will undoubtedly look back in fondness and
experience a poignant nostalgia for Urantia throughout eternity.

When you are reawakened on the mansion worlds, it will be thrilling,
wonderful, and immensely pleasurable. But as soon as two or more of you
is gathered together, the topic will go back to the battling days of
Urantia and you will recount your earthly sojourn with pride, the way a
soldier recounts his battles and shows off his scars. Take solace and
pride in this understanding as you work and worry, as you laugh and cry.
All things do indeed work for the best.

The way of love, the Master's way, will eventually triumph in the hearts
of men. And as you battle to make love triumph within your own hearts,
remember to use gratitude constantly in order to adjust your soul to the
Father's greater purpose. Indeed my children, truth always triumphs over
error in the end. There is no force in the universe that is greater.
Love is truly all that is real. One might even say the very atoms and
molecules that comprise matter are a form of love. The force of love
cannot be competed with, cannot be defeated, cannot be changed. And so
as you contemplate the circumstances of life, give thanks for love and
allow your soul to be drawn toward greater love as you do so.

Behold, the Master stands at the door and knocks. How do you open the
door? Through gratitude, yes.

My children, I understand that it is easy for your minds to be drawn
into the burdens of life and the complex nature of your lives creates
demands upon your mental energies, sometimes beyond that which seems
bearable. But my friends, these very moments when pressures are the
greatest will be part of your fond memories. They will be part of the
battle of your life which will for eternity be a source of satisfaction
looking back.

When you have good things occurring, it is good to give thanks. But when
you have bad things piling on, it is even better to give thanks. Train
yourselves in this way, and you will find that your soul becomes more
and more immune to disappointment and despair, that your resilience
grows and your overall happiness increases. Give thanks my friends.
During your greatest moments of crisis, give thanks.

Now I will entertain your questions.

Q: May I ask for a message for Jim please?

Ham: Certainly, my son. You are making great progress mentally and
emotionally, even though at times it would not seem so. Taking this hard
lesson to heart means giving thanks even for your illness. This is the
time of your greatest trial. These months have been tremendously
difficult and they have tested the limits of your strength. But my son,
you have not succumbed to bitterness, you have not been angry or
succumbed to the temptation of regret and blame. This illness instead
has brought you to a place of greater peace and acceptance. Give thanks
for this. Your body, though in an overall process of recovery, can still
experience rapid set backs and frightening relapses. Stay in close
contact with your doctor. Report changes to him, even the most minor.
Carefully follow his guidance and advice. There is no easy road, but be
very diligent in your efforts to recover. Slowly and steadily move ahead
each day.

Q: May I ask for some direction for myself please?

Ham: Of course. My dear, you do very well. You are understanding and
moving forward in unexpected ways. The efforts you are making are very
good for your soul. Some times you have a tendency to be your own worst
critic and this tendency toward self-criticism quickly veers from being
constructive to being self-defeating. Many times I have told you be easy
on yourself. Let things be a bit, let things come to you and don't feel
the necessity for hitting your head against a wall. You have trained
yourself into some unhealthy cycles. And so, to move forward, you have
to transcend that and find your way in love and this means love for

Q: I understand.

Ham: Yes, this is the only way you can move forward and it's a process
of letting go. You've trained yourself to reach for that hammer to hit
yourself with, and not it's time to let go of that. I hope my words have

Q: Yes, thank you.

Ham: My dear, you do very well. Everything as it is right now is as it
should be.

Q: Do you have a message for Cathryn Ham?

Ham: Yes my dear, much of what you have used in your life in order to be
constructive has been based in fears. The fear of something was your
impetuous to do something else and these fears, expressed and
unexpressed, tend to grow when they are fed in this way, being
reinforced. Gradually, however, you are learning to be more trusting of
the universe and less combative with it. And as you grow in this trust,
time will prove to be less of an enemy and more of a friend. Take some
time to commune with the Master and honestly open up concerning your
fears. Talk to him as you would your closest and dearest friend, for
that is what he is. Don't allow yourself to be pushed here and there by
people and circumstances without thinking through these moves and
changes. And through it all, find the way in which love is made more
real, not less so. But be assured that you are doing very well.

Q: Do you have anything for Rebecca?

Ham: Yes, my dear. You are doing very well my daughter and are joyfully
discharging the tasks before you and this is as it should be. Gradually,
you are coming to remove the yoke you have placed upon yourself, which
is heavy, and are taking up the lighter burden of the Master's tasks.
Walk with him. Veer not to the left or the right but rather walk in the
way he is showing you. Take up his burden with joy and thanksgiving for
the way ahead is pleasant and filled with shady places of rest.
Gradually my dear, you are coming to understand and appreciate the
Master's hand upon your hand and his voice within your ear saying "this
is the way".

Q: Jarad?

Ham: Yes my son, you too are gradually lessening your own burden as
well. You too had struggled against a burden that was of your own
device. And now as you free yourself and grow in the stature of your
greater self, you are finding the way to be joyful and light as well. It
is difficult for you to let go of the old habits of self-denigration.
You too have the mallet within arms reach at all times. But, you will
find as you gradually let go of this old pattern that your way becomes
much more enjoyable, easier, and more sustainable. Keep in mind always,
you work for the Master and for his pleasure and purpose. All the minor
ups and downs are as nothing compared with the joy of working hand in
hand for his purpose. It is wonderful also for you to be supportive and
encouraging of another for this will give you much more than you
realize. Is this helping?

Q: I believe it is.

Q: Howard was hoping he could get a message?

Ham: My son, you do very well. Gradually, you are coming into a
realization that you are loved and cherished in the universe and an even
greater realization that this love has nothing to do with what you do or
have done. No, it is only concerned with who you are. It is hard for you
not to continually take the measure of life. But my son, life cannot be
measured. As you grow and increase in loving acceptance of yourself, so
too will your love and acceptance of others increase and the old fears,
resentments, and disillusionments will gradually shrink to nothing as
love grows and crowds out the errors of life, both yours and others. You
are doing well in many, many ways. Continue to find ways to accept those
few times when you feel you are not doing well. Overall, your progress
is steady and very solid. Rest assured in this knowledge.

Q: Can you give a personal message to Bob?

Ham: Of course. My son, you are doing very well. Some times you find
yourself drifting back into old ways of thinking without realizing how
destructive some of these impulses can be. But, overall, your balance
and sense of purpose continues to grow as increasingly you come to find
love in your life and all around you. Human beings, on the whole, are
surrounded by love and yet do not see it. Your life and your efforts
continue to show fruit and to be a very positive force in this world.
Nurture yourself as you nurture others, love yourself and you love
others. Don't be afraid to take chances but rather be ever more secure
within yourself so that these chances are that at all but rather the
confident efforts instead.

Q: Do you have a personal message for Wendaring?

Ham: Certainly. My dear, be at peace. You worry needlessly. Make your
ambitions spiritual ones and your ambitions for others also spiritual
ambitions. In this way, you will see things more clearly for the
Father's plan concerns only the spiritual. His measure is only spirit.
All the troubles of this life are mostly concerned with the material
things of life but these are as nothing to God. Work then to reorient
all your thoughts toward seeing life as God sees it. In this way, you
can rise in calm assurance above the daily strife and you will be a
source of strength and comfort to others.

Q: Do you have a personal message for Charlie B?

Ham: Certainly. My son, your life has also been filled with ups and
downs and the stress of coping with too much. Be careful not to take on
too many burdens for you must have time to spend with the Master and to
commune with him and with the Father as well. Sometimes activity is a
way to avoid inner adjustments. So be very careful not to fall into the
trap of masking inner anxieties with outer busy work.

Q: So as we look back from eternity, will we not focus all the mistakes
and shortcomings but instead see how we learned and grew through these

Ham: Of course. You will see the times of greatest difficulty for what
they are, the times of greatest triumph and the bitterest pain will be
simply remembered as perhaps a turning point or a time of growth. The
suffering, yes, will be forgotten and truly you will see your life in
its greater perspective.

Q: I also want to say I am truly thankful for the beautiful and profound
lessons you bring us each week. I feel we are among the most fortunate
people on this planet to be given such a clear presentation of truth. I
also want to thank you for your consistent support and gentle, loving
efforts to give us each feedback and guidance.

Ham: Well, I would direct your thanks not to me, but to the one who sent
me. I am simply carrying out the Master's plan. I am his instrument,
nothing more. But I do certainly cherish your friendship and I will
honor and cherish your gratitude as well. Thank you.

Q: Is there any feedback you have for me this week?

Ham: Yes, my son. Truly you are going through some periods of rapid
growth which can be unsettling and make the simplest things seem
difficult. You will find that growth tends to occur in spurts and then
these gains are consolidated and there are periods of balance and
relative calm. Growth will make you feel anxious and unbalanced. But,
remember this is simply a passing phase. All in all, your growth has
been very even for you are quite well grounded in your life and your
work. Even rapid growth spurts don't push you too off center. Remember
though, that your partner is also going through periods of growth and
this is a time when she requires all your empathy and support. Always
remember how truly blessed your marriage is and give thanks for this
blessing for it is truly a great source of happiness for you both.

Very well my children, you are all doing well. We are constantly amazed
at the lengths to which you will go for the Master and his plan.
Continue reaching for his hand and grasping it in times of well being as
well as times of uncertainty. As always, my love and prayers go with
you. Until next week, farewell.

David G. Schlundt, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology
Department of Psychology
Vanderbilt University
301 Wilson Hall
Nashville, TN 37203

Phone: (615)322-7800
Fax: (615) 343-8449
Email: David.Schlundt at Vanderbilt.edu
Many of the temporal troubles of mortal man
grow out of his twofold relation to the
cosmos. Man is part of nature -- he exists
in nature -- and yet he is able to transcend
nature. Man is finite, but he is indwelt by
a spark of infinity.

The Urantia Book - page 1221

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