Not long ago I woke up in the middle of the night feeling very ill. I don’t know what was wrong, but the symptoms were those I’ve heard that describe food poisoning or stomach flu. In the first moments when I became aware of how I felt, my impulse was to rush to the bathroom. But as I came more fully awake, I realized that before that I could pray, using what I have learned about healing prayer through my study of Christian Science. I thought about Christ Jesus and the healing grace he brought to mankind, including his promise that we, his followers, are able to heal with prayer, as he did.
I have lived in the same house for over forty years. It is not a big house or lot, but I have enjoyed it very much. It is pretty close to my neighbor’s house, but eventually her yard became very overgrown, creating a lovely green zone. I enjoyed the privacy this natural barrier gave both of us.
Then one day I heard chain saws and found the greenery had all disappeared. I met the new owner of the now quite visible house. He said he planned to fix it up, rent it, then sell it. Shortly, he poured a cement slab in the formerly green yard and the house was rented to a single parent with a basketball-playing ten-year-old.
I learned that this little family had moved from a cramped city apartment where he had not been able to practice basketball outside. I was happy that the boy now had a place to play, but I was very dismayed that my privacy and quiet had been replaced with barren cement, glaring lights at night, and the thunk, thunk, thunk of constantly bouncing balls. I decided to have new double-pane windows and doors installed, but this did not eliminate the annoying sounds.
I knew I wasn’t going to move, so I sat myself down, thought about the situation and prayed for a solution. While I was asking God for some direction I heard the familiar sound of the basketball bouncing on the court. I looked up to see the young boy shooting hoops with a face filled with joy. Right then, instead of seeing a noisy neighbor, I saw one of God’s children expressing God’s goodness. I knew he was in his right place, and so was I.
I had an attitude change. The noise stopped bothering me. In fact, now if I don’t hear it, I miss it and when it comes again a smile comes across my face and I know we are all embraced in God’s love. In Science and Health by Mrs. Eddy, page 205, it says, “When we realize that there is one Mind, the divine law of loving our neighbor as ourselves is unfolded; whereas a belief in many ruling minds hinders man’s normal drift towards the one Mind, one God, and leads human thought into opposite channels where selfishness reigns. When we fully understand our relation to the Divine, we can have no other Mind but His,–no other Love, wisdom, or Truth, no other sense of Life, and no consciousness of the existence of matter or error.”
Some months ago, when taking an afternoon walk, I decided to visit my neighbor. I was not alert to a concrete rise in her driveway, however. The last thing I recall was tripping over the rise and I was in flight.
When I awoke, my neighbor said she had called 911 (the emergency number) because I appeared unconscious and she was concerned. I was not sure this was what I wanted, but I recognized that her caring was Love, God, directing her. I was taken to the hospital with my consent. There were head and face injuries and a sprained wrist. I received kind attention, mostly cleansing of the wounds, and when leaving the hospital I was given well-meaning instructions on what to look for in the days to come.
As a student of Christian Science, I recognized these instructions as mental suggestions that I needed to reject, for the expectation of continued problems would not be helpful in healing. I turned from this expectation of discoloration and pain to what I have learned in Christian Science: that Spirit, God, was never touched by an accident, so neither could I, as His expression. The physical evidence did not need to distract me from seeing and knowing this truth about my true being. When I arrived home I referred to page 194 of Science and Health, by Mrs. Eddy, where it says:
“A change in human belief changes all the physical symptoms, and determines a case for better or for worse. When one’s false belief is corrected, Truth sends a report of health over the body.”
In the next few days, my appearance improved greatly and was soon back to normal. I had no pain, dizziness, or headaches. I also remained alert. My neighbors were astounded at the quick healing. I attribute this elimination of the effects of sudden meeting with concrete to the understanding of God in Christian Science.
I am very grateful that this Science of Christianity came into my life manty years ago. It has blessed many around me as well.
Fifty years ago, I became interested in Christian Science, not because I was looking for healing, but because it spoke to me about Truth and Love (God) in ways that I could understand. It spoke to my intelligence and because of this, it reinforced and prepared me to meet everyday life as a worker, wife, mother, and caretaker. The truths of Christian Science, applied, provided a healthy home and world. Both physical and mental healings were worked out without the use of medication for me and for my family.
A recent healing occurred when one morning I could not open my left hand. It was swollen shut and quite painful. Because I am a left-handed person, this was an immediate problem, and I was tempted to be afraid. Because of my study of Christian Science, however, I knew that Mind (God) is in charge of my being and that matter is not. I turned to page 468 of our textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, where Mary Baker Eddy asks “What is the to the scientific statement of being?” She answers,
“There is no life, truth, intelligence, nor substance in matter. All is infinite Mind and its infinite manifestation, for God is All-in-all. Spirit is immortal Truth; matter is mortal error. Spirit is the real and eternal; matter is the unreal and temporal. Spirit is God, and man is His image and likeness. Therefore man is not material; he is spiritual.”
This statement of truth carried me through the healing, which took about a week. This is just one of many physical healings over many years which I can attribute to the spiritual education of this textbook, Science and Health, by Mary Baker Eddy, founder of Christian Science.
Although I attended Christian Science Sunday School during part of my childhood, I did not always study and practice it in my adult life. However, when I was a young adult, several severe life challenges drove me back to the serious study of Christian Science. I knew I needed the comfort, support, guidance, and healing that would be there for me. Later in life, I was glad I had already returned to the regular study of Christian Science when I was confronted with three challenges at the same time.
After five years in a job that was very special and rewarding, I was informed that my job was being abolished and my small staff was to be replaced. Earlier I had suggested a reorganization plan but it did not include these changes so this news came as quite a shock to me.
At about the same time, I sold my home and invested all of the proceeds in a real estate investment plan which was recommended by a friend. After a couple of months I became aware that the key player in that plan had deceived me and absconded with all of my funds.
During this difficult period I developed a severe infection on one hand which was quite uncomfortable and necessitated bandaging.
I prayed earnestly and deeply for comfort, guidance and a greater sense of God’s unfailing care. I had to resist the temptation to blame myself for suggesting the reorganization in the first place and for being tempted to get into an investment that promised great gains without first giving it more prayerful consideration. I engaged the prayerful help of a Christian Science Practitioner, whose tender encouragement and support brought me much peace when everything seemed to be going wrong. Nevertheless, during this very difficult period I continued to express my heartfelt gratitude to God for all of the things I did have to be grateful for. To name a few, I had family and friends, a nice place to live, and I never really doubted that I would always have the supply that I needed.
Soon inspirations came that led me to the right steps to take that would result in adjusting the entire situation. This time I paused to pray and make sure the plan was divinely inspired and not my own will taking charge.
I requested a transfer back to the department I had left to accept the better job. Fortunately, my better judgement had been to take a leave of absence and not resign from my previous job. At that time, several others were also seeking reinstatement. To my great relief, even though the others had greater priority, I was not only reinstated but I was given the one and only job I really felt was suited for me. All of the others who needed transfers were also reinstated. About the same time my hand was completely healed.
I was also led to engage a well-known law firm to pursue the matter of my investment and, although it took about ten years, eventually I was able to recover most of my investment. I was able to work evenings to supplement my income to pay for the lawyer.
Much later I came to realize that the job I had accepted and held for the last fifteen years of my professional career was ideal for me and although it had not the status of the earlier job, it was richly rewarding and not nearly so demanding and stressful. I knew I was really in my right place and I felt I was able to make a difference. Also, I learned a good lesson in turning to God first, and humbly seeking divine guidance rather than listening to friends who meant well but were considering only the apparent benefits and were not necessarily divinely inspired.
There have been other times in my life when I have had to make my way through deep waters but Christian Science has always provided me with the understanding of my safe place in the divine economy, my spiritual nature as the image and likeness of God, and an awareness of His power and willingness to bring a greater sense of harmony into my life through His great love. In our textbook, Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy, she assures us, “Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need.” Relying on this truth has always helped me to patiently await the unfoldment of its promise. Sometimes the outcome is prompt but sometimes it takes longer to unfold and even longer to appreciate its lessons, rightness and blessings.
My introduction to Christian Science came when I met a beautiful young lady. I accompanied her on Sundays to a Christian Science church, though I had never heard of Christian Science or attended that church before. After a while, we got married. When my wife had a physical problem, she would leave the room telling me she had some metaphysical work (prayer) to do. In the beginning I didn’t quite understand, but whatever the problem was, it would quickly disappear. As time went on, I became more interested in the main book about Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, written by Mary Baker Eddy. The ideas in this book were like the math and physics that I enjoyed. If I followed the rules, I would always arrive at the correct answer.
When my wife was pregnant with out first son, she went to a doctor who worked with many Christian Science mothers. She had also asked a Christian Science practitioner to pray along with her during the course of the pregnancy and during the delivery. On the morning she was to have the baby, I was sitting somewhat anxiously in the waiting room when the doctor approached me, then stopped, went to the telephone, and talked for a few minutes. Then he came over to me to inform me that my wife and I had a beautiful, healthy boy. He then apologized for the phone call delay. He doctor had phoned the practitioner to tell her that according to all his medical knowledge this child should never have been born alive! You can understand that from that moment, I became an earnest student of Christian Science. That was over fifty years ago. You can understand my gratitude to God, Christ Jesus, and Mrs. Eddy for Christian Science.
In raising our family of four lively children, we have had ample opportunities to meet challenges of both daily life and emergencies with prayer alone. Turning to God in earnest prayer was our first choice for help, because we found time and again it was the most effective, quick, and unobtrusive healing method.
One Christmas vacation, we were skiing with some friends, and it was almost time to go home. My older son, who was in Middle School at the time, decided to do one final run down a fun hill, but suddenly instead of seeing his grinning face at the bottom, I heard screams half-way down. I made my way over to him as quickly as I could and found he had somehow fallen on his wrist and could not get up or move the wrist. He didn’t feel he could even take his glove off without being in agony. We prayed together, right there in the snow. He attended the Christian Science Sunday School, and had learned from early childhood that God is all good and the only law-giver. Therefore, we could rely on His law and care even in this extreme situation. Gradually, we were able to get him up without using that hand and made our way to the car.
During that long drive back home, it was mostly quiet, as everyone was doing their best to pray to help their brother, but mentally for me there was a loud battle going on. On one hand I would remember wonderful statements of truth in Science and Health that were like messages right from God, like (page 424),
“Accidents are unknown to God, or immortal Mind, and we must leave the mortal basis of belief and unite with the one Mind, in order to change the notion of chance to the proper sense of God’s unerring direction and thus bring out harmony.
“Under divine Providence there can be no accidents, since there is no room for imperfection in perfection.”
Then, as I was holding and pondering this, a terrible fear would assail and I would wonder what the extent of the injury was and if he would be able to go back to school when it resumed in a few days. This mental battle as to which I really believed was more powerful, this vivid picture of injured wrist or God’s ever-present loving government, waged long and vigorously for several hours. I couldn’t at the same time believe that God is supreme and that injury is supreme. Only one is, and I finally was able to trust God enough that I stopped entertaining fear. We got home, and he was able to rest that night.
We asked our son the next day if he would like it x-rayed. He had had a broken bone a few years before, and at that time had decided to have it set. It turned out to be a long and very uncomfortable process, and my son was not eager to repeat it. He opted to continue in prayer, which we did.
Progress was rapid. He was grateful for the use of a sling for one or two days, then put if off as being unnecessary. He was able to return to school with the rest of his class, uninhibited and with free use of the arm and wrist. He has had complete use of it ever since.
My gratitude is unbounded for Christ Jesus who illustrated God’s healing laws, and for Mary Baker Eddy, who had the vision and courage to write Science and Health to make those healing laws available to everyone through Christian Science.
A. L. K.
Early on when I was a novice in Christian Science and didn’t fully realize the power of God, I was daily reading the Bible-Lesson to learn more of God’s Almighty presence. One evening, our cat was not doing too well, having difficulty breathing. My wife took him to the vet to see what was going on. She returned from the visit very disturbed at the veterinarian’s report that the cat had a disease for which there was no available remedy. He said that the cat would not live beyond that night.
Based on the study I was doing, I decided not to accept this verdict and to pray about it instead. With God’s tender care the cat did survive the night, and several more years after that. The result of this experience was that I saw God’s impartial love and powerful care for all His creation, including cats! This realization had a significant impact on me and provided me with the faith that God is omnipotent. I’m truly grateful for His ever present care.
As a Christian Science Nurse, being able to lift patients properly is an imperative skill. One evening as I was working at Fern Lodge (a nearby Christian Science Care Facility), a lift was not done properly and later I began to feel the effects of this in my back. The next two days were my days off, and I worked with a Christian Science practitioner to understand my perfection as a child of God, untouched by what seemed to be a bad lifting experience. As the time approached for me to return to work, by back was still aching. I wondered: do I stay home and rest more, or put forth the effort to go in? While talking with the supervising nurse, I realized I was needed. I called the practitioner again and she gave me the following citation: “…Blessed is that man who seeth his brother’s need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another’s good.” Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy, page 518) When I arrived, I was asked to help get someone up and give her a shower and I was asked if I felt able to do it. I found that with another nurse doing the lifting part, I could do the rest. As I continued to work, the pain disappeared and I was able to fulfill my assigned responsibilities. Within a couple of days, I was assisting with lifts with complete freedom. The first statement of the Preface of Science and Health states, “To those leaning on the sustaining infinite, today is big with blessings.” I like to say that, to those leaning on God, each shift is big with blessings.
A number of years ago our daughter was leaving to take a job across the country. She had just graduated from a nearly college and now she was setting out by herself on this new adventure. I found it was very comforting to know that she would not be alone, that God was with her. When I was tempted to worry, I remembered the Scripture, “He shall give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” We helped her pack all her things in her little car and sent her off happily, knowing that God’s angel messages would help her make right decisions and all would be well.
Now my granddaughter is leaving to go the college on the East Coast. As a new high school graduate, this is her first time away from home. Again worries come to mind, but I know she also will be guided by God’s angel messages and all will be well.