Greetings, brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series where we seek to
explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly
Father has revealed many revelations of spiritual truth to me, and I want to share them with you. This
morning we seek to understand the meaning of spiritual lemonade.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
"A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is
delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into
the world." John, Chapter 16, verse 21.
Brothers and sisters, today in our discussion we shall discuss certain techniques for dealing with the
down sides of life. Life on this world is full of unexpected twists and turns. Some of these
vicissitudes are not easy to adjust to. Some of them are very bitter, but a way must be found to
integrate them into our lives if we are to continue on the road of progress. And though we must
traverse this factual reality, we would like to grasp the spiritual values and meanings contained
within them. We shall use several examples of how we can transform disagreeable changes into the
more enduring spiritual realities. We shall look for the good in these experiences, as if we were
making lemonade from lemons.
The lemon is a very bitter and sour fruit taken by itself. But when we dilute it and mix it with sugar
and perhaps ice, we have a delicious drink. The drink is still comprised of the bitter fruit but we have
added something else that transforms the taste. We now explore the possibility of there being a
corollary in the realm of human experience. Is it possible to combine the values of human experience
in such a way that we make lemonade from life? We know that all things work together for good for
those who do the Father's will. So, to make spiritual lemonade, we must expand our perspective. We
must stop viewing life from only the material perspective because it is like seeing with only one eye.
There is no depth perception. We must view things with two eyes in order to fully appreciate the
view that is being presented to us. Likewise, human experience contains spiritual reality as well, and
we must find a way to integrate these two in such a way that we make spiritual lemonade.
Long ago, someone stumbled upon the idea of making lemonade out of lemon, water and sugar.
Long ago, even before the beginning of time, the heavenly Father proposed to make man in his
image, and he then followed this proposal by commanding man to be perfect even as He is perfect.
Now it has been revealed to us how to make lemonade from life. Our understanding has been
expanded to the point that we know there is more to our lives than just the purely material
experiences of day to day life. There is another side to life other than the struggle for material
survival. Human life is the beginning of a stupendous eternal adventure of finding the eternal Father
and becoming perfect as he is in the process of finding Him through His Son, Jesus.
Viewed alone, without the spiritual perspective, human life can be despairing. Scarcely a day goes
by that we are not made aware of our awful limitations and powerlessness in the face of some of
life's painful experiences. Not a day goes by that we are not disappointed in some way, and the
crowning insult of it is all is the knowledge that each day we are slowly and sometimes not so slowly
being pulled toward the dark night of eternal oblivion. Such a fate looms large in the consciousness
of those who think. But there is something else in that same consciousness: the desire and hope of
surviving this human life, a way to make spiritual lemonade. This mixture of the bitterness of
mortality combined with the sweetness of hope and desire for immortality is the lemonade of life.
We understand that it is produced by the combined mortal facts of life with the spiritual values of
Whence comes the power to make spiritual lemonade? The power resides in our faith in Jesus. For
Jesus says, "this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should
lose nothing but should raise it up again at the last day." By simply believing Jesus, and accepting
him, salvation is made fully available to our consciousness. As we have made note before, the human
experience is still real, and we must go through it. But the transcending combination of human
values and spiritual values is sustaining, and hopeful, and inspiring. This is so because His grace is
sufficient for all human experiences; these combined values are inspiring because we receive a
conscious sense of survival, along with the truth that generated spiritual values of human existence
are to continue. And these combined values are hopeful as we realize that we are just beginning an
eternal growth and developmental period of ever-increasing magnitude, joy and happiness.
By our faith, we must now begin to view the down sides of life as essential stimuli for increasing
growth. To remove stimuli removes growth, just as removing the lemon from the lemonade destroys
the lemonade. The stimulus is hard, just as the lemon is bitter, but when combined, appreciation of
the lemon is what gives flavor to the drink. When thinking about the difficult stimuli in combination
with the achieved values of growth, we experience spiritual joy. These sometimes painful stimuli
bring out the potential of spiritual growth in us. And with the understanding that all things work
together for good for those who do the Father's will, the assurance of peace and tranquility replaces
the sense of dread and despair, causing our souls to rise above such retarding influences.
And concerning the translation of potential growth to actual growth, consider this folktale. A frog
was thrown into a peg of milk and could not get out. It seemed like a disaster, but the frog begin
doing the only thing that he knew to do, and that was kicking his legs. And as he kicked his legs, the
milk began to thicken, and initially this required even more effort. But as he continued, the milk
thickened and became butter. At this point the frog got a tasty treat as an award and also hopped
away, escaping from what appeared to be a milky tomb. The frog made lemonade.
When life forces us between a rock and a hard place, and we just don't have much left with which
to fight, when our emotions collapse, we should let our faith fight for us. Faith fights by declaring
that God is our Father. We, His sons and daughters, are precious in His sight. This faith knowledge
will sustain us and eventually deliver us from the mortal struggles that have stimulated our growth.
Our faith will deposit us safely on high in one of Jesus' mansions, for he said, "In my Father's house
are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you." Let us
learn to make lemonade from lemons.
This concludes today's message on understanding the meaning of making spiritual lemonade. We
hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day.
Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.