Wednesday, December 22, 2010
I, of course, emailed her right back, and said to her, this book may prove enlightening and helpful to you. I certainly hope that this is the case. Over the years as I've either mentioned this wonderful book to others, or given them a copy, not all have seemed ready for what it offers. And this is fine. In one case, the person who received a copy laid it aside for a time. And later, when a pressing physical condition arose, got the book and began reading, pondering the truths in it. His problem was healed, for which he and I thanked God greatly for His glorious healing power.
I've said in more than one blog post that Science and Health can do wonders for a person. It brings to those who are ready for its inspired teachings the holy experience of Christ-healing. And for someone who has yet to read this book, and may be thinking of getting a copy-- either at a local library, or bookstore, or Christian Science Reading Room, or ordering one on-line-- what have you got to lose?
Friday, December 17, 2010
"There are those who outwardly acknowledge Christianity, but who do not accept it as the guiding light in their lives. Many of such persons would resent the charge that they are not Christians, and they pass for Christians in the world generally. But Christianity was introduced and established by Christ Jesus as a positive regenerative force in human life, lacking which one's profession of being a Christian would become void. And Christian Science is here to restore to Christianity its original vitality and inspiration."
Found myself saying Amen to his last sentence in this paragraph. And I thank God that I am able to have this wonderful religion in my life. My heart overflows with gratitude for Christian Science.
Now to some background on this early worker. He was an accountant in Victoria, British Columbia and found that his eyesight was failing. It became so bad, he had to leave his work. All he could do was sit in a darkened room, which he did for years, the light being so painful to his eyes. He traveled to England to see specialists, but his sight was not restored. One day, a lady came by and mentioned to him the Christian Science textbook. She knew of people who had been healed from just reading and pondering the truths in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. He got a copy of the book, and began to make his way slowly through it. He could still see dimly. Before he was finished, his eyesight was completely restored. One can only imagine the freedom and joy this brought him.
For the remainder of his long life, he devoted himself to establishing Christian Science where he lived, serving the Cause with inspired, crystal-clear writing on many topic and through healing others.
If there had never been any other healing from what the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science gave the world than Mr. Greenwood's, this alone in my view would be more than sufficient to validate what she wrote and taught. And there have hundreds of thousands of such proofs that Christian Science heals. What a privilege to be able to practice it. And a demand. As Jesus says in Luke (12:48): For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required."
Friday, December 10, 2010
Not only did listening to this make me extremely grateful for the teachings of Christian Science. But as I drove back home, I left inspired to take a copy of its textbook to her. Whether or not it will prove what her mother will be receptive to and/or helped by, isn't the main thing. Just one divine truth lighting up consciousness can do wonders for her mother. I feel from discussions I've had with Paula as she was dealing with my mail, she obviously has strong faith that God can heal illness.
A letter I intend to include with the book will be an account of how my own mother was healed from reading this book when doctors had given her no hope of cure. A neighbor, seeing the suffering my mother was going through, especially with 2 very young children to care for, told her that there was a book that had been healing others. Well, long story short, this compassionate woman gave my mother a copy of Science and Health. Thank God she did! Mother began reading and was dramatically and permanently (and I might add, quickly) healed of that condition. She withdrew from the Methodist church which she loved and began a deep study of the Bible together with the Christian Science textbook, put my brother and me in the Sunday School, and never looked back.
As for myself, I wouldn't part with my copy of this blessed book for the world, if I couldn't obtain another one. Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures heals.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
This woman I admire*
Rather than just retire,
Her heart on fire
To reach others with
What had set her free
From years of suffering --
God's divine method of healing --
She prayed and toiled, leaned on God,
Wrote down what He revealed.
This lady loved Christ Jesus
More than all the world, she said.
And her lifework to make clear
What he knew about God and man
Has made Christ's words and works
Understandable and potent for me.
*Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder
of Christian Science
Friday, December 3, 2010
On page 234 line 31 of the Christian Science Textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy states,
"Evil thoughts, lusts, and malicious purposes cannot go forth, like wandering pollen, from one human mind to another, finding unsuspected lodgment, if virtue and truth build a strong defence."
(The italics are mine in the above quote)
A couple of years ago I saw a very dramatic example of this statement in action. In the course of business, I was approached by a woman who began with great enthusiasm to tell me about how the "flu season" was going to be terrible that particular year and she had proof she wanted to share with me. No sooner had she launched into her story than I began to declare vehemently in my own thought that, "This isn't true and I'm not going to accept it!" as well as some other appropriate truths. Immediately it was as if a steel wall came between us. Although I stood facing her with what I hope was a polite smile on my face, none of her story was penetrating my consciousness. Truth had indeed built a "strong defence." Suddenly, she stopped, almost in mid-sentence with a rather puzzled look on her face, and immediately changed the subject entirely. Within a brief moment she was called away to answer the telephone. Allthough I remained in this place of business for perhaps another twenty minutes, this woman was constantly occupied with her own activities and as I left, I gave her a pleasant wave which she returned as I exited the building.
Interestingly, for the remainder of that so-called "flu" season, I noticed perhaps only one or two newspaper articles referring to the "flu." Obviously I really wasn't looking for such stories and perhaps missed them entirely. I certainly didn't read the ones which I noticed.
I am indeed grateful to Mary Baker Eddy and her gift to the world of the Science of Christianity and its daily practicality.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
The latest thing she wanted to talk about was hearing on one hand that Satan has all power and has to be battled all the time, and then learning from what Mary Baker Eddy brings out, that God is the only power and has it all.
Realizing that she will eventually have to settle this conflict in her thinking, and as help in that direction, got Prose Works, a compilation of Mrs. Eddy's writings other than Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. The following is from "Unity of Good", pages 9 and 10 which I read aloud to my friend. "What is the cardinal point of the difference in my metaphysical system? This: that by knowing the unreality of disease, sin, and death, you demonstrate the allness of God. This difference wholly separates my system from all others. The reality of these so-called existences I deny, because they are not to be found in God, and this system is built on Him as the sole cause. It would be difficult to name any previous teachers, save Jesus and his apostles, who have thus taught."
I could see these words were sinking in, and as I saw her to the door, could see she would be turning them over in her thought.
How many times have I experienced God's supreme power by understanding that He alone is present and all-powerful, and that what was challenging me had no cause or power or place in His kingdom -- the only kingdom there is -- nor any right to prevail over me. In sum, that it was unreal.
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Through the study of Christian Science, we're helped to see what that healing truth is, the truth found in the Bible's pages. There we learn that God is omnipotent and entirely good and that man is the image of God. As the likeness of his creator, man forever expresses the divine nature. And because God is Spirit, man is spiritual. To be sure, we appear to be merely flesh and bones and subject to suffering. But physicality isn't the actual or ultimate substance of our being. Life in the flesh is a misconception of man, whose real identity as the image of God is incorporeal, untouched by debilitating physical conditions.
The growing understanding of man's spiritual nature has a purifying effect on the body. It awakens us to the everpresence of Christ, Truth--of the divine healing influence--and the body responds to this uplifting influence. Health is restored.
Not cloud talk, this. So many men and women--children, too--can attest to this. And from my own experience, something that happened to us when we lived in Seoul, Korea. Apparently something we had eaten on the economy as they put it that we Westerners couldn't handle, or the water we had drunk that we shouldn't have, resulted in acute discomfort. We needed help from a practitioner and there just happened to be a worker from The Mother Church in Boston in Southeast Asia at the time for a meeting of Armed Services chaplains. This Journal listed practitioner was staying at a local hotel. My husband phoned and he immediately took a cab and came to our apartment. He spoke to us of strong truths found in the teachings of Christian Science, and prayed for us. Before very long, the extreme discomfort abated, and by the next day, we both were recovered enough to eat something. Oh, were we grateful to God for that potent help from this devoted worker!
Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures": "To ignore God as of little use in sickness is a mistake. Instead of thrusting Him aside in times of bodily trouble, and waiting for the hour of strength in which to acknowledge Him, we should learn that He can do all things for us in sickness as in health." (page 166)
Divine healing in Christian Science is more than a recovery of health; it includes moral strengthening. Turning to God in prayer and relying on Him for healing constitute the genuine Christian way of salvation. This holy activity regenerates and purifies one's thought and life.
We have a God-given right not only to enjoy sound health but to recover it through spiritual means when it is threatened. Jesus has furnished us with a precedent, indicating that as we follow his example we can learn what God is and how to avail ourselves of His power.
The Bible is full of asurances of God's healing help. These are not empty promises. They come to life for us in clear-cut healing when we are equipped with practical knowledge of God's eternal law of harmony and of our relationship to Him. Empowered with the Christly understanding that a study of Christian Science brings, we can turn to God for every aspect of our well-being, including health, proving to our own satisfaction and joy, "The Lord will take away from thee all sickness." (Deuteronomy 7:15)
Monday, November 22, 2010
Mary Baker Eddy describes the physical healing of Christian Science as "...the operation of divine Principle, before which sin and disease lose their reality in human consciousness and disappear as naturally and necessarily as darkness gives place to light and sin to reformation." The term, "Principle", as a synomym for God, is unique to Christian Science which Mrs. Eddy defined as a "scientific system of divine healing", as well as to the age in which she lived when the principles of electricity, the automobile and airplane were being discovered and utilized. These principles had always existed and in were in operation but were only useful to mankind when they were discovered and understood. An airplane seen flying in Jesus' time would have been considered a miracle but today we understand it to be the principle of aerodynamics in operation. Likewise, Jesus' healings had been considered miracles for nineteen hundred years until Mrs. Eddy discovered them to tbe the operation of divine Principle, God.
After discovering Christian Science in1865 she spent the balance of her life stating and explaining it so that all may understand and utilize this system or science of healing which is available in her book, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures". In the final edition of her book of 1907, she defines God in her chapter, Recapitulation, as "incorporeal, divine, surpreme, infinite Mind, Spirit, Soul, Principle, Life, Truth, Love" which express the nature (Mind, Spirit, Soul), essence (Life, Truth, Love) and wholeness (Principle) of God. The understanding of the spiritual definition of these synonyms as well as the order in which they appear are important to healing since Recapitulation is the chapter Mrs. Eddy chose for teaching the healing practice of Christian Science in class instruction. Although I understood that "order" was necessary to understand any science--numbers for mathematics, notes for music, etc., I did not appreciate the relationship of the order of these synonyms to healing until I reviewed an important healing for me--the healing of the fear of death associated with flying. I found the order of events leading to this healing matched the order of the seven synonyms on page 465; each synonym leading to the next synonym and lifting my thought from that of a mortal fearing death to that of God's image and likeness which knows no fear.
Awaiting orders to Navy flight training while serving on an aircraft carrier which had just come back from action in the Korea war, I heard so many horror stories of crashes and casualties involving flying on and off the ship I became very fearful. It appeared I was risking my life due not only on my flying ability but on that of hundreds of individuals from those who designed the airplane to those who maintained and serviced it. I realized I had to heal my fear of flying or it could prove disastrous. I started reading every refence I could in "Science and Health" as well as "Prose Works" on death. One Sunday I saw one of the squadron pilots on board ship in church and, telling him of my fear of flying, I asked him how he dealt with that fear as a Christian Scientist. He took me up on the flight deck where the airplanes were tied down and asked me to look at the F4U Corsair which he flew and which had the reputation of being a "widow maker" because of its tendency to roll and crash when power was applied unless the pilot corrected the roll quickly. He pointed out that there was nothing dangerous about the airplane sitting on the flight deck but the only danger was in what I thought would happen to the plane in a given situation. He then referred me to Mrs. Eddy's definition of man in "Science and Health" as the "compound idea of God including all right ideas". He said, the airplane did not include me but that I included the right idea of the plane.
I cannot explain the freedom and peace I felt as the fear left my thinking. It was as if a heavy weight was lifted off my back. However, as with any spiritual insight, it isn't really understood until demonstrated much as one has to prove mathematical understanding by working out the problems. The following week I was on the flight deck and a Corsair was on approach trailing gasoline from a leak. With the abrupt stop as the hook caught the wire, the plane burst into a big ball of fire as the leaking gas rushed forward on the hot engine. I felt sick as I visualized the pilot being burnt to a crisp in the cockpit and was miserable all afternoon. At supper that night I looked down the table from me and there was the pilot of that plane eating dinner with his shipmates. He had jumped from the airplane after landing and hadn't been touched by the fire ball. I then realized the suffering I had experienced was from what I "believed" and was just as real to me as if it had really happened. I then accepted from all those references I had read that death was likewise an illusion rather than the reality of God's creation, and that I could rely on my spiritual (Godlike) senses to protect me from what the material senses tell me.
Looking back, I saw my healing occur as I understood each snyonym in the order of the definition of God in Recapitulation. it was "Mind" which told me to heal the fear of flying and seek a more spiritual understanding; "Spirit" thorugh studying the Bible and Mrs. Eddy's writings which, in turn lifted the fear of flying from my consciousness. However, this spiritual understanding was not sufficient until I saw that even the material picture I was suffering from was false. This gave me the confidence to trust the spiritual senses of "Soul" which was my identity as God's image and likeness. As my thought was uplifted through Mind, Spirit, and Soul, my prayer brought me into harmony with the operation of "Principle" which in turn demonstrated a career in flying, "Life"; the protection from error during that career "Truth" and the joy and satisfaction of expressing God in that activity "Love".
This healing had a projound effect on my life as it freed me from the fear of being the victim of any accident, be it airplance, automobile or even a crashed economy. I am grateful for Mrs. Eddy's discovery of God as the divine Principle which is always operating in our lives. And as the mathematician identifies his thinking with the laws of math to solve a problem, we can experience the operation of this Principle to heal our life problems by identifying our thinking with the spiritual understanding of those seven synonyms for God.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Loving Thy Neighbor
Jesus' command is alive and well on our street.
We dogs ought to know; we get a lot of love,
Especially from Glenda, who gives us treats
And is always glad to see us.
She brings her pretty little dog
Around to our house to play.
And when I was a tiny puppy,
Our neighbor brought me a stuffed toy
I would chew on in the cool grass.
I still remember this.
And since my sister has come along,
She's had the same love and attention.
Of course, Glenda helps people, too.
She doesn't talk about religion;
This woman lives it.
We dogs know love when we see it in action.
And we think this is what Jesus was talking about.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
to take up the teachings of Jesus Christ)
To avoid destruction worthy to the name,
Embrace the narrow path Jesus taught
His followers to take in life.
Why did our Master say this to us?
To take all the joy out of living?
It was to save us from the sorrow,
The disillusionment and the lack
Of all things worth having,
That inevitably comes from
Taking the world's way.
And the worst thing about
Disobeying Jesus' commands?
It leads to a sense of living apart from God,
To absence of the lasting good
Our heavenly Father alone can give.
No matter how far down the broad way
You have gone -- if almost to the end --
You can turn around and adopt
Today the only way to live.
Your loving Father wants you home.
Monday, November 1, 2010
Eye Examinations at the Naval Academy
In my senior year at the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, many of my classmates were concerned about their eye exams because of the 20/20 requirements for naval aviation, and many were doing various eye exercises because their eyesight had deteriorated from four years of studying.
I didn't think much about it untilI met the photographer of "From Bow to Boston", a book carried in the Christian Science Reading Room in those days, who attended the Annapolis church and was then blind. I knew I had to free myself from fear and decided to do some prayerful work, since I had always wanted to fly for the Navy. I looked up the definition of "Eyes" in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy -- "Spiritual discernment--not material, but mental" and then looked up "Spirit"..."Divine substance; Mind; divine Principle; all that is good; God; that only which is perfect, everlasting, omnipresent, omnipotent, infinite."
I reasoned that seeing good had nothing to do with physical eyes, but was a divinely mental quality which I could never lose,and that there were many people with perfect eyesight who were miserable with what they were seeing physically. Furthermore, my photographer friend would pose us in his studio and take pictures even though he was blind. He was expressing "spiritual discernment" even without his eyesight. Since I firmly believed in exercising since I was on the gymnastics team at the Acaedemy, I felt I could "exercise" my spiritual vision by seeing all the good I could before the eye exams which were a week away. I can't recall a more wonderful week while there, or since.
While standing in line waiting for the eye exam, I felt fear that the doctors would find something wrong since I had stayed up late the night before studing with a dim light after "lights out" had sounded. I immediately countered this suggestion with the thought that the doctors were doing their highest sense of love to insure future pilots would be physically qualified and that only divine Love, God was with me in that line. When I read the charts, my eyesight exceeded the 20/20 requirements and I flew airplanes off and on aircraft carriers as well as performing the demanding visual requirements of air-to-air refueling for 20 years without the use of glasses.
This experience has blessed me in many ways since, and I know that as God's man, we can never be deprived of the only vision that is really important: that of spiritual discernment, the ability to see good.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
A Shining Light
The wisest people
I'm blessed to know
At the Master's feet
No matter what bend low.
And I have observed,
These humble stay that way.
It's the way they live --
Not the words they say.
This city set on a hill,
This shedder of light,
Though resident of Scotland
Reaches far with Christ's might.
Christians such as he
Live not for wealth or fame,
But to follow in Jesus' steps.
May I, dear God, do the same.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Yesterday a neighbor was more than a little inconvenienced by a mix-up at one of the local bookstores. He had driven there to get one of my books, and due to the, what seemed to me, incompetence of one of the employees, came away upset. I called, of course, to try to straighten things out. But the phone conversation didn't go smoothly. The result was less than good feelings on both sides.
Then, early this morning God made it clear that I was the one who needed to lead the way, go out of my way, to carry out what a follower of Christ must do: make peace.
I thought of Jesus' "Blessed are the peacemakers" as well as this from the Old Testament: "He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with they God?" (Micah 6:8)
Initially, "Humble is not something I can do this morning" I said to myself. It didn't seem to me that I needed to do anything. It was up to the other individual, I self righteously thought. But the prompting kept coming. So a letter wrote itself, which I just delivered to the store. And this was well received and smoothed things out--even got a warm hug from the girl. When we try to do what God expects of us, all concerned are going to be blessed. We can count on it.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Some years ago a business associate and friend often queried me regarding Christian Science. I knew this individual was sincerely trying to understand what Christian Science was all about. More often than not, though, his queries came down to, "Okay, Christian Science may be good for little ailments--like colds or whatnot--but what would you do if you were really, really sick?" Many Christian Scientists have probably faced similar queries.
Though I always assured him that I knew I could trust Christian Science treatment under any circumstance and that I would always rely on prayer for healing, these encounters always left me feeling more than a little on the defensive no matter how vigorously I declared my faith. Quite honestly, I sometimes found myself almost dreading these interrogations. However, since this individual was a good friend and I was convinced of the sincerity of his quieries, I prayed to know how to respond in a way that would answer his need.
One day when he renewed his inquiry, I found myself responding by asking him a question: "I've toldlyou what I would do if faced with a serious health issue, now let me ask you: what would lyou do if you went to your doctor and he ran all sorts of tests and then informed you that you had some incurable terminal disease and there was nothing medical science could do for you?"
There was a moment or two of stunned silence. I could tell that this individual had never before had to come to terms with the possibility that anything like that could actually happen with medical treatment. Shortly he responded quietly, "I guess I'd pray." So I said, "Exactly."
Pondering this incident, I realized that this friend, and perhaps many who pursue this line of, "What would you do if...?" questioning are not really asking what we as Christian Scientists would actually do for ourselves, but rather they're asking if they could trust prayer for themselves. Unless brought up short by the realization of the medical field's shortcomings, they may not be able to grasp the real potential of prayer. Interestingly, despite the fact that over the intervening years, I have discussed Christian Science with many individuals, I have rarely, if ever, been subjected to this kind of "what if...?" questioning.
There is certainly Biblical precedent for this kind of response. For example, Jesus when confronted by the Pharisees regarding the adulterous woman could have responded with a discourse on the woman's prefect sinless identity, etc., etc. But would that have defused the situation? Probably not. Instead, Jesus put the ball squarely in the Pharisees' court by saying, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." This is found in John, chapter 8, verse 7. This broke the mesmerism of ignorant bigotry and hatred.
Jesus' "I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." (John 8:12)
And from Mary Baker Eddy, "Immortal and divine Mind presents the idea of God; first, in light; second, in reflection; third, in spiritual and immortal forms of beauty and goodness." (Science and Health with key to the Scriptures, p. 503)
This documentary pointed out that what the amazing builders of those awe-inspiring edifices had in mind was to give men and women light. Their lives were so hard and dark that to go into one of the cathredals with their gorgeous stained-glass windows soaring above was an experience much like being lifted to heaven. One can believe it.
Thinking along further on the light that has its source in God, couldn't help but be thankful to Him for the light of spiritual understanding Christian Science has brought into my life. Well, what if it has, one may say. Good for you, but I don't feel much light in mine.
Let me tell you about someone I knew and what the light of divine truths did for him. This man just out of college was struck with some disease so serious, doctors feared he couldn't come out of it. He was bed-ridden for many, many months. Then someone told him about Christian Science and what it was doing for others. He got the book, "Science and Health" and began reading. His healing was not quick. It took months for him to get over his fear of dying, his weakness so much that finally, he said, to get to go for a brief drive in the car was wonderful. But his complete freedom came. And it came with a bang.
This man later skied, flew a plane,hiked, was one of the most active, healthy, radiant individuals I have been privileged to know. He immediately entered the full-time practice of Christian Science to help others find the spiritual light and freedom he had found. And he continued in this work until a very advanced (to human sense) age.
But what truly stood out to me about this worker was the light in his countenance. He glowed with love for God and man. The spiritual understanding he was getting from the Science of Christ which reveals the truths our Lord and Master healed by illumined his life and that of others. It was uplifting just to see his face.
My point in all of this: what Christian Science has done in my life, the light of joy and freedom and dominion it is bringing me, and what it did for this man who got up off his deathbed to a wonderfully useful and happy life, it can do for you who happen onto this website.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Something just this morning which underscores this for me. An individual contacted me who had read a poem I posted on another website. This is not unusual. But the website my poem was on was a near-porno site! I couldn't believe a poem dedicated to Jesus' words would show up there. Just goes to show that the web with all its downsides can do good things.
To go back to pre-blogging days. I was in Borders Books one day looking through the poetry section when what did I spy? A book of poems titled, "Talking Dirty to God"! This needs to be countered I thought immediately. And right then and there resolved to put out a book of poems of my own to offset this foul stuff. And my first book, "For Love of Christ" came out soon after. It is still being carried by Borders which goes to show, it isn't my writing I realize that accounts for this. It is the words of "him who spake as never man spake." (see John 7:46)
And the poem that appealed to the person running that website I wouldn't touch with a 20-foot pole?
Christ's Followers and Dignity
Jesus' 'Cast not your
pearls before swine'
is a command we as
servants need to mind.
Sometimes (not always) I can see,
we walk a very fine line
when dealing with those
uninterested in things divine.
While we would crawl in the dirt,
or gladly mop the floor
for our Saviour we adore,
groveling Jesus would deplore.
This is not to say we
loving our neighbor neglect.
But obedience to Christ demands
that we keep our self-respect.
Yes, we Christ's followers must obey
when we hear God clearly say,
thus far and no farther;
dignified, you are to stay.
I can hear some commenter already say, where's the dignity in putting your words out on something that can have such smutty stuff on it? I agree that there is much on the web that is repulsive. Don't I know when I see my name attached to porno sites. And along with many others cannot get Google (the worst offender in this) to remove the listings. But all in all, I still think getting the message of Christ's saving power out there through God's Word and the teachings of divine Science are worth it.
Would our Master blog? Would our Leader? Of course we do not know. But as my friend Hal pointed out in a comment left on this blog, telling others about the saving truths we Christian Scientists are learning is vital. We all (and this certainly includes me) could be making our religion available to others much more than we are. And in this use, to me, the internet is a good thing.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Just ran across something this morning from something Mrs. Eddy wrote that answers perfectly the question I've been asked more than once, "How can you be a Christian Scientist?!" This is found in "Miscellaneous Writings" on pages 192 and 193 from the section on Bible Lessons.
"'And these signs shall follow them that believe;...they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover,' This declaration of our Master settles the question; else we are entertaining the startling inquires, Are the Scriptures inspired? Are they true? Did Jesus mean what he said?"
She continues, "His words are unmistakable, for they form propositions of self-evident demonstrable truth. Doctrines that deny the substance and practicality of all Christ's teachings cannot be evangelical; and evangelical religion can be established on no other claim than the authenticity of the Gospels, which support unequivocally the proof that Christian Science, as defined and practised by Jesus, heals the sick, casts out error, and will destroy death."
As I have said to some of my friends in other Christian denominations, get a copy of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures . You won't be tossed in jail; I doubt that your pastor will disown you. See for yourself what I've been blogging about. You just may be blessed more than you know.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
to feel a llife-changing force,
put into practice what
Christ Jesus said to do.
This I have found to be true,
as have most of you, of course.
These sayings, merely read,
are sublimely glorious.
But the power that comes to one,
when they are literally done!
Living the Word has ever been
and it will ever be,
the true test of one
who is Christ's totally.
Not that His commands
are always easy to do,
as no one knows probably
better than I and you,
who may have walked the floor
and shed a tear or two, thinking
"This thing I just cannot do."
Yet, keeping on in the fight,
realizing if we put things off,
we'd delay with Him being right;
so we persevered and won our way.
As encouragement to one
who may feel off the track,
begin living as a child of God ought --
actually doing what Jesus taught
life-saving changes you will see.
Such is the power that comes
from taking Jesus seriously
Our Father wants you back.
Monday, October 4, 2010
Substance Abuse Training Facility:
I visited SATF 4 times where I conducted 8 Bible classes in both the men's and women's sections to 33 attendees, gave away 1 Science and Health and 20 Sentinels. In the men's section a man told of how grateful he was for his family's and girl friend's support, saying they saw more in him than he saw in himself. He has been praying about an anger problem and tells me he sees much progress as he understands how Jesus forgave because "they know not what they do". The women's section has an active group for the classes with new women coming in every week. They were asked to study the story of Abraham, Moses, and Joshua and we discussed how each was a story of man's search for his spiritual identity--the promised land--and how each relates to us today as we journey from sense to Soul for our spiritual identity as the Christ likeness. Like Abraham we must trust God and be renamed, leave Egypt--the slavery of material sense--like Moses, and like Joshua destroy the claims of mortal mind for which the tribes occupying Canaan are metaphors. Introducing the Bible stories as metaphors and allegories is the key which unlocks the Scriptures, making them relevant to ourselves. Even Paul calls the Abraham story an allegory (Gal 4:24). One woman said she didn't want to attend our classes but a voice told her to attend and she feels blessed every time she comes. Another woman who was not released on schedule said the Bible lessons were freeing her from disappointment as she now realizes she could never be separated from God. Several women expressed gratitude for being forgiven by their families for their drug problems. Two women having marital problems reuniting with husbands who are incarcerated found help in the chapter on Marriage in Science and Health where Mrs. Eddy reiterates Jesus' words, "What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder." One of the staff members whose father recently passed away asked for prayers and received help by recalling all the good things about her father and knowing those qualities can never die.
I visited the hall 4 times where I conducted 9 Bible classes to 31 attendees and gave away 1 Bible. With each unit I focus on how to listen to God, based on Jesus' command to "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." (Matt 5:48) and then go to the Ten Commandments and Jesus' summary: Love God and love your neighbor as yourself. When introduced to listening to God, one boy excitedly opened his Bible to Philippians 4:8 where it says, "Whatsoever things are true...think on these things" whic he had just read the night before. I have been impressed with the childlike receptivity the youngsters have to a God who knows only good, but have also encountered those who can't accept a God who only knows good because of being schooled in the literal interpretation rather than the spiritual understanding of the Bible. Occasionally, I enter the unit where girls with self-destructive problems are clothed with padded jackets to prevent them from harming themselves. Sometimes a girl will be eating lunch and not be appearing to listen although she will ask for the Bible class. One girl wearing such a jacket did listen and told me she sometimes became angry and did not want to live. Last week I found her in the "normal" girls' unit and as we discussed listening to God, I asked her how she was doing. She spent some several minutes excitedly telling us she is no longer angry and doesn't want to kill herself because she knows God loves her and she has a lot to live for!
Saturday, October 2, 2010
if for God's guidance I pray,
and earnestly want to stay
in tune with things divine
by realizing God is
the only Mind, and mine*
that things do not merely happen--
whether involving circumstances
or events seemingly brought
about merely by man.
I find there is at work
God's incomparable plan.
And how appropriate it is
to seek His right-on direction,
they way our Lord and Master did.
Thus doing, less and less will one
wake up one day to find
his footsteps, alas, have slid.
So, in matters material or ethereal,
I'm learning it's worth the bother
to seek counsel from our loving
always-with-us, all-knowing Father.
*"The children of God have but one Mind."
Mary Baker Eddy,
Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures
Friday, October 1, 2010
Some months ago, a girl who knew nothing about CS came across this website and began noticing all the references to Mary Baker Eddy's great book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. She was interested to learn more about this, and obtained a copy for herself. As they say, a duck to water. She couldn't leave this book alone, kept reading and very soon began using what she was learning about God and man.
Then in talking with her on Monday, heard about 3 ways in which Christian Science was helping her--the most recent having occurred early that morning. She was out jogging, when she stepped on a cone from a tree and tripped. A pain shot up her leg and she thought, uh oh, did something break? But quickly, she began praying with the Scientific Statement of Being found in the book mentioned above. It reads as follows: "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; mater 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 girl got up, walked a few steps, and continued on her way, completely free of the pain. She was so thankful to God.
Then in another instance of what CS can do for us. She was helping a lady with a project, who seemed to be such a perfectionist, this girl dreaded going over to her house. The woman gave the impression nothing was quite good enough. Working there was a strain. Then one day, this new student of Science was thinking about what she was learning, about being made in God's image, being His likeness. It dawned on her, why I don't have to feel inferior. I don't have to be afraid I won't measure up. I, and this woman I'm working for, are God's children, made in His own image. The situation changed dramatically, and now it's a pleasure to be working with this woman.
The 3rd instance of what a growing spiritual understanding can do came in this way. This girl had grown up quite poor, and when they finally got their own home, was always anxious lest they lose it somehow. "What if we can't keep this house?" was always at the back of her mind. But this fear just disappeared (she can't say exactly when). She attributes this to the continuous, deep, exciting study of the Eddy book, as she calls it. Perhaps it was learning more about God's great love for us, and the infinite ways He has of meeting our human needs, she thought.
These are just some of the examples among thousands taking place everyday in the world of the benefits to be gained from Science and Health. Reading and using in our everyday lives what Christian Science brings out about God and man--divine truths Jesus knew and applied in his ministry--will do for you what it has done and is doing for this very happy girl.
Monday, September 27, 2010
Witnessing an instantaneous healing through the application of scientific prayer in Christian Science is someting that one never forgets for the rest of their life. It is particularly satisfying to witness a healing of a much-loved pet.
Our first rescued/adopted retired racing greyhound was injured one afternoon during a play-group romp at an enclosed ballfield. It's something that happens frequently to greyhounds when they bump into each other as they're running. They can run up to 45mph! This particular incident left our dog with a 4-6" gash in his side.
We called a Christian Science Practitioner for prayerful support immediately on arrival home. Although it was an open wound right down to the rib cage cartilage there was no bleeding and the dog seemed in no discomfort. Nonetheless we realized the situation was serious and needed to be satisfactorily addressed.
After a couple of days with support from the Practitioner I felt it was time to pray on my own. After dismissing the Practitioner, I took the dog in my arms and sat down in a chair in my home office. This in itself probably looked strange as the dog weighed over seventy-five pounds and was slightly more than a lapful under any circumstances. I bowed my head humbly reaching out to God with a deep yearning to help this animal. In a very few momeents a line of prayerful reasoning--the details of which escape me now--came very clearly to my thought and as I followed these thoughts their absolute truths came with stunning clarity. I knew beyond the slightest doubt that all was well.
After another few moments I opened my eyes and put the dog off my lap. In doing this it was impossible not to see his side--it was definitely NOT a case of "praying and peeking" but simply that he came naturally within my line of vision and as I put him on the floor, it was evident that the gash was closing up rapidly. My thought was so conscious of his perfection in Mind that I thought no more of it. The entire incident lasted no more than five minutes.
Just a few minutes later the doorbell rang and two neighbor ladies came to visit my wife. The dog ran eagerly to the door to meet them and as they were petting him one said, "Oh, what happened to his side?" and before I could answser she looked closer and said, "it looks like he was hurt, but it's all closed up"! And it was. The scar disappeared rapidly--covered almost completely by hair--and the rest of the time this dog was with us, that particular scar was the least visible of several on his body. It was quite evident he had been a very successful and aggressive racer during his career. Although I don't know for certain, I have to assume the other injuries were attended to by vets at the track and most likely had been stitched up. Nonetheless they were far more visible than the one healed entirely through prayer.
Over the intervening years this healing has stood out to me as dramatic evidence of God's healing power. It is particularly satisfying to realize that healing accomplished mentally requires no recuperaative or convalescent period.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Agonizing to make a decision which I thought would either sacrifice a career opportunity or a personal relationship, I spent hours in a Christian Science reading room researching everything I could find only to leave undecided and dreading the decision. Mary Baker Eddy's statement, "Your decisions will master you, whichever direction they take." ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures", 392:22) was even more terrifying since I had recently made some bad career and relationship decisions.
I contacted a Christian Science practitioner who patiently listened as I explained my "hopeless" situation in great detail. He then told me that if I had no hope, there was nothing he could do to help me. Shocked because I had never had a practitioner tell me he couldn't help me, I told him I would "get" some hope. He then said I needed to use the truths I already knew and asked me to correct every negative, unGodlike thought that came to me with the truth I knew about God and myself as His image and likeness.
When the fear of losing the relationship came, the thought also came that I could never lose my relationship with God, my most important relationship. Then the thought came that my God-given career was to express God which I could do in any job. I soon regained my peace and joy and when the decision time came, I made it as best I could and it led me to both a wonderful career and relationship...there is never an "either, or" in God's kingdom. "Science and Health" tells us, man "is the compound idea of God including all right ideas;" (475:14-15). I can never express enough gratitude for this practitioner's demand that I both hope and use the truths I had.
In retrospect I learned several lessons:
1. We must always turn to God rather than ourselves for decision.
2. Use the truths we know...Elijah and Elisha both told widow women to use what they had and Jesus used the loaves he had to feed the 5000.
3. Finally, our deicions, good or bad, can never affect God's loving truth about us any more than they can affect the sum of two plus two, but as we replace our fears and concerns with God's thoughts, we will find ourselves having that Mind which was also in Christ Jesus, making beter decisions which always bless us.
Monday, September 20, 2010
To do all the things you need to do?
Your priorities are out of whack.
Consider placing God's demands
Above other people's and your own.
Look at Christ Jesus, someone
Who was never stressed out or hurried,
Yet was always on time for healing.
Why was this, do you think?
Could one reason have been,
"I do always those things that please him"?
A holy example, this.
But something all can shoot for.
Even the willingness to pray,
May this day be lived the way,
Heavenly Father, You know is best
Will begin adjusting circumstances
As only God can do.
Wanting to please Him,
And do things His way,
Can't help but weed out the
Unnecessary in your day-to-day.
There will then be enough time
For Him -- first don't forget --
And time enough for you.
Friday, September 17, 2010
Yesterday, I passed it along to Joel, a friend who works at Starbucks, who postively loves Christ. This young man attends the University of Tennessee, works at what he considers a humble job, since Jesus was among us as one who serveth. And this man yearns to be a preacher someday, and even now has an opportunity to preach at a friend's church.
Reflecting on what I read in those publications, and the glow Joel has for things of the Spirit, couldn't help being grateful for every individual who has Christ front and center in their lives. They have a joy and peace of mind and purpose--a real zest for life--that ones who don't have this love central to their lives, just cannot be experiencing. Without love for God's Highest, and a desire to follow wherever this leads us, something vital is missing. And of course, we see it in the lives of those who should know better, those who have an abundance of help in the Holy Scriptures. And in the writings of Mary Baker Eddy! (Hint, hint)
This was a woman who was willing to give her all to do what God inspired her to do. And these words are among my favorite. They're found in "Miscellaneous Writings" (page 281): "Admiral Coligny, in the time of the French Huguenots, was converted to Protestantism through a stray copy of the Scriptures that fell into his hands. He replied to his wife, who urged him to come out and confess his faith, 'It is wise to count the cost of becoming a true Christian.' She answered him, 'It is wiser to count the cost of not becoming a a true Christian.' So, whatever we meet that is hard in the Christian warfare we must count as nothing, and must think instead, of our poverty and helplessness without this understanding, and count ourselves always as debtors to Christ, Truth." (This follower of Christ was later martyed for his faith, I read.)
The above incident that Mrs. Eddy writes about occurred during the Protestant Reformation. Having read widely of the heroes and heroines of this grand time has brought much inspiration into my life. To learn of what Martin Luther, William Tynedale, John Wycliffe, and John Wesley, to name just a few, endured--often unspeakable hardship--rather than become remiss in their duty to God and man, has shined a light on my path.
And speaking of Wesley, who as everyone knows, is the father of the Methodist denomination, I once read an account of his preaching that left me in awe. He was preaching out of doors, the only place open to him since the Church of England disapproved of his efforts to bring vital Christianty back into the church. This one day, the crowd became unruly because of some ruffians stirring them up. One man hurled a brick at Wesley's head and knocked him unconscious. But this, this part was amazing to me. His friends lifted him up, and according to several eye-witnesses, this holy little man was loving and calm and did not seek retribution on the one who had injured him--a Christlike response I cannot even imagine at this point. Not the not returning evil for evil, but behaving in such a calm manner.
But if this doesn't show the peace and power of a life given over to Christ! If this blog post reaches just one individual who has yet to put love for Christ in their hearts, then God be thanked. A new day is about to dawn for that heaven-blessed person.
Let me close this with something else the courageous woman who founded my church wrote: "Sacred history shows that those who have followed exclusively Christ's teacing, have been scourged in the synogogues and persecuted from city to city. But this is no cause for not following it; and my only apology for trying to follow it is that I love Christ more than all the world..." (Message to The Mother Church for 1901)
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
The first revolves around our neighbors to the right--the husband a tough ex-Navy man with language to match who was once not easy to deal with This is an understatement! Wanting to run things for others, he actually began planting some rose bushes on our property. This was just the culminating "We're not going to put up with this!" intrusion. We spoke to him. One encounter led to another, and pretty soon, we were in the thick of discord. For some time, he and his wife avoided us in the yard, and we returned the favor.
Then one day, I was reading the Sermon on the Mount and Jesus' words, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God" jumped off the page for me. I was not thinking or behaving like I belonged to our heavenly Father at all. I knew the time had come that I needed to get my thinking and actions in line with the divine demand. "I can't do this!" was my reaction. "Not where old Baker is concerned." But wanting to be obedient--knowing I had to be--prayerful work began in earnest. It took some time for things to thaw, but do you know, today Baker and I are real buddies. I really love this man. He helps me in various ways, and we do likewise for him and his wife. It's such a sense of freedom to have the easy, warm relationship we have now.
On one level, the initial reaction we might have, to handle inharmonious situations ourselves, could be satisfying for a time. To fight fire with fire, in a manner of speaking, could be tempting. But this would be like putting Miracle Grow on our flowerbeds. We just should not handle conflict this way. I admit following Jesus' teachings is hard to do at times. But peacemaking in everyday occurrences makes other incidents needing peace-keeping that much easier. And challenges will come for all of us who are soldiers of Christ. No, it isn't always easy to rise instantly to the occasion when discord rears its ugly head. But the Christian warfare is glorious. Whatever praying is necessary to control mere personal reaction and do the right thing is well worth the effort.
"Oh, I can just not say anything under provocation, if that's what it takes to keep the peace," someone might say, "but I sure don't have to like it." Smoldering resentment at the actions of other people won't make the grade. As Jesus instructs, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you." (Matthew 5:44)
Am I telling you that always keeping silent is the one sure way to get along harmoniously with others? No. There might well be circumstances where not speaking up would be cowardly and ineffectual. But in any case there is a need to respond in a Christlike spirit, with loving words and actions meant to heal the situation, not inflame it.
We can each make peace in these small, everyday encounters. The Bible counsels, "If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men." (Romans 12:18) Making earnest efforts to follow this instruction in our daily contacts with our fellowman, we will experience much more harmony. And the best, the really sublime part, we will be conducting ourselves more and more in keeping with what Jesus taught about how to coexist peacefully with others.
The other experience involves a neighbor around the other cul-de-sac. This woman had, and still does I presume, all the juiciest gossip one could wish to hear. Being a person who wants to be kind to others, I let myself be drawn into conversations that left me feeling dirty, not right. But I didn't want to offend her. Then one day I came across something Jesus says about needing to take account for all our words. This is in Matthew 12:36: "...I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgement." This I took to mean me and gossip. I took these words to heart and truly wanted to obey them. As is always the case, I had my opportunity not long after to put my resolve to the test. Here came this woman one day when I was doing some gardening. Although she had in mind to relay the latest gossip, this time the conversation was kept on a higher level. I did not even want to engage in what she had to say, had no interest in the news at all. We chatted without her taking offense or thinking me cold. Ever after, God has caused our paths to not collide. Just haven't been put in the circumstance where there was any problem.
Something from Mary Baker Eddy's writings, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" to be exact, was helpful in all of this as well. "Neither sympathy nor society should ever tempt us to cherish error in any form, and certainly we should not be error's advocate." (pages 153, 154) This helped me see that while I wanted to be neighborly, it was not incumbent upon me to go along with gossip just to keep the peace, so to speak.
Doing what God gave Jesus to give us as guidelines for living does change things for the better. And I find that wanting to follow in Jesus' steps brings a sense of dignity as well. We become more discriminating in what we do and say. We have a right, under God's direction, to think our own thoughts. The determining factor in our everyday harmony is our obedience to what we know is right, to what will please our heavenly Father--never what other people may be thinking or wanting us to go along with. At the door of our own thought is where we maintain our Christly composure and sense of dominion.
Let me repeat: the desire to do things Jesus' way unfailingly brings the right distance, balance, freedom, to our dealings with others. And rather than letting down our standards, it causes us to become more judicious. We learn to keep human opinion and influence at arm's length and are empowered to entrust our unfolding spiritual understanding and progress to God alone. No neighborly, Christian behaviour is forfeited, just harmony and helpfulness to others increased.
How practical and powerful are Jesus' words!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
By: Harold Shrewsbury
Mary Baker Eddy's discovery of Christian Science is as revolutionary today as it was when she discovered it in 1866 because it is based on a spiritual understanding of God which heals the sick and the sinning, rather than on the faith of most Christian churches. She describes how to reach this spiritual understanding in her book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, in which she writes: Divine metaphysics is now reduced to a system, to a form comprehensibvle by and adapted to the thought of the ae in which we live." (146:31) In the preface she explains healing in Christian Science as the "the operation of divine Principle (a term she uses to describe God) before which sin and disease lose their reality in human consciousness and disappear as naturally and as necessarily as darkness gives place to light." (xi:9-14) This phenomena is similar to mathematics where a mistake such as 2 plus 2 equals 10 is corrected by the understanding of the fact that 2 plus 2 equals 4. As any mathematical error can be corrected by "mathematizing" consciousness, so the errors of material sense can be corrected or healed by spiritualizing consciousness in which all unlike God or good disappears much like all the wrong answers disappear to someone who understands mathematics.
Her discovery was based on her lifelong study of the Bible and Jesus' healings. Genesis 1:31 tells us of a creation where evil can exist only as a lie or mistake. "God saw everything he had made and behold, it was very good:" So the devil, a name for evil, is described by Jesus as a "liar and the father of it." (John 8:44) The remedy for any lie is the truth, and Jesus tells us to "know the truth and the truth shall make you free." (John 8:32) Christian Science heals by knowing (understanding) the truth about un-Godlike errors in human experience which in turn transforms material consciousness, where sin, disease and death appear, to spiritual consciounsess, where they disappear.
Science and Health gives a step by step explanation of how to achieve this transformation in consciousness and the last chapter, "The Apocalypse", gives us the summary of this process in its unique and profound interpretation of the sacred city descending out of heaven from God in John's Revelation whose four sides are the Word, Christ, Christianity, and divine Science (575:17-20). She says "the four equal sides of (the city) are heaven-bestowed and heaven-bestowing." (574:22-24) The city, New Jerusalem is heaven-bestowed because it comes "down from heaven, God" and it is heaven-bestowing because it explains how the Word of God transforms human consciousness from a human basis, where both good and evil exist, to the spiritual or Godlike base in which only good exists,and all that is un-Godlike such as sin and disease disappear.
This process is similar to the way we learn any subject: we learn addition (Word or statement of addition); adopt or become one with this principle (Christ); use it to solve a problem (Christianity); and achieve an understanding of addition (Science). So to heal in Christian Science we acknowledge the Truth (Word); identify ourselves with it. (Christ..."I and my Father are one." John 10:30); express it in our human experience (Christianity); and the Truth becomes a self-evident fact to our now spiritualized consciousness in which all unlike this Truth disappears (Christian Science or spiritual understanding).
The following instantaneous healing is an illustration of this: As a student of Christian Science, my needs had been met through my understanding of the statement from Science and Health, "Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need." (494:10). During flight training in the Navy I found myself lonely and depressed at a new base where I knew no one. Turning again to that statement for healing, I felt I was going back to "square one" but instead I found myself at "square two" when it suddenly dawned on me that since I was God's image and likeness, I was the expression of that Love that meets the human need, rather than the human in need of this Love. Instantly the loneliness and depression left me and I felt a sense of peace and well being as if a light was turned on in my lonely BOQ room. As the expression of Love I felt I should be meeting a human need and busied myself at the base swimming pool that afternoon teaching youngsters how to dive as I had done at summer camp as a boy. Attending a Christian Science church in town the next Sunday, a lady introduced herself and her daughter to me and for the rest of my stay at that base I had the wonderful companionship of this daughter and her family. My experience changed as my consciousness changed and my human need was met. As I accepted Love (Word) as my identity (Christ) and expressed it in my experience (Christianity), I gained the consciousness of Love, and all unlike Love disappeared (Science). In the above illustration I do not imply that all one has to do to demonstrate the healing power of Christian Science is to read the preface and last chapter of its textbook.
On the contrary, each chapter prepares the reader to understand the next chapter. Furthermore, each spiritual concept must not only be read, but applied and lived, before it is truly understood just as addition isn't really understood until the student can demonstrate it. In her last chapter of her book Mrs. Eddy tells us to read this book from beginning to end (again since we've already read it thus far), study it, ponder it. (559:21) Students of Christian Science should continuously be reading Science and Health from beginning to end because consciousness is constantly evolving as one reads and gains new views of divine reality. Each time I read this book and the Bible, I feel I am reading it from a new, more spiritual viewpoint. I feel I am constantly putting on the "new man" Paul describes in Ephesians and Mrs. Eddy describes as God's idea "forever developing itself and rising higher and higher from a boundless basis." (258:13-15) Understanding an infinite God is an infinitely ongoing experience.
In my healing I moved from identifying myself as a needy human to the expression of the Love that meets the human need, and my experience reflected that new understanding. You can measure your progress in your prayerful study by noting the change in consciousness from "sense to Soul" as Hymn 64 goes, rather than watching for a change in your material situation. I was healed while still in the lonely room and John saw his vision of the city foursqure while still in prison on the island of Patmos. As we spiritually digest the truths of the Bible through our understanding of Christian Science, we become the expression of those truth wherever we are. The city foursquare is an infinite, on-going, eternal journey of new views and healing.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
His piece talks about far too many Americans not wanting to do the work required to excel, only wanting the past few years to have it easy, get the rewards without expending the effort required. And sadly, our country now being rated in 11th place in the world.
This naturally made me think of my religion and something its Discoverer and Founder, Mary Baker Eddy, writes in Message to The Mother Church for 1900: "The song of Christian Science is, 'Work -- work -- work -- watch and pray.'
I am glad that this is so, that what I believe and live by does take a lot of work. And along with other students of Christian Science, have learned to start the day with "work" -- that is to say, prayerful affirmation of God's control of all things, that He goes with me in everything I do, that I am in fact His spiritual image and likeness, maintained by His divine laws. These are just some of the truths I like to get clear before anything else comes up. There are an infinite number of ways and things we can pray-- "work' to establish about ourselves and others.
Is doing what our great Master commanded demanding? Absolutely. Is working in Christian Science a serious business? Absolutely. It is essential if we're to keep on upward wing, pleasing God as we should.
However, it is mental activity that is refreshing/strengthening/uplifting. I recall when just a new practitioner and praying for a lady who was having a baby, a wonderful lesson I learned. Oh was I working up a storm. The husband kept calling me as things went along. It seemed they were not going as well as expected. I redoubled my praying. Finally, I was about to wear myself out. It was then that I called upon my teacher in Christian Science and related my experience. She listened, then almost chuckled, "My dear, let Christ do the work"! Almost at once, the husband phoned that the baby was here and all was well.
I've never forgotten this excellent counsel, and of course, just after she said this, realized that the truths I was knowing, "working" with, had the healing power--not I per se. It was all-powerful Christ, Truth that carries the day and restores harmony to whatever is the challenge. This has helped me so many times and perhaps it will be freeing for someone else who happens to read this blog.
Have a lovely day!
Friday, September 10, 2010
I was trying to pray for a family member who appeared to be seriously ill and wanted my prayerful help. I couldn't seem to focus for more than a few seconds before I would become distracted by everything that was going on around me. I felt the need to pray but how to do it? It came to me to pray the Lord's Prayer, which our Master, Christ Jesus gave us. I knew I could focus on the Lord's Prayer, because it was so familiar to me. Mrs. Eddy tells us in her great work, Science and Health, that it is the prayer that covers all human needs, and instantaneously heals the sick. So slowly, thinking about each line, keeping my eyes closed, I began to pray. I especially love the Lord's Prayer because when you pray, you are not only praying for yourself, but for all mankind. The prayer starts, Our Father, not My Father!
I was in my third repetition when I heard a huge crash! I opened my eyes and to my surprise, I was totally alone in the waiting room. The crash was a two car accident on the street right outside. Two little girls, who had been playing on the sidewalk while waiting for the folks inside the vet's, ran inside crying. I was able to comfort them and lead them to the room where their parents were located. I alerted the staff to call 911. A young man entered the office, who had observed the accident, saying everyone involved in the accident was fine. He volunteered to wait outside for the police and direct traffic. The state police showed up within minutes, even though the vet was located out in the country. If ever you could call an accident gentle and harmonious, this was it. I was so grateful I was praying right when the accident occurred, and that I was praying the prayer that meets all human needs. Oh and my family member?-- she was quickly healed within days.
I am so grateful for the healing Christ, and the insight and understanding Mary Baker Eddy provides us in her writings.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
You may be someone who believes in God, who relies on divine power for help in many ways. But you have not been taught to turn to Him for healing. Or you may not give God a thought. This is possible, in these times, I realize. But you should be doing both!
Let me start with God, with the Bible. This verse from the Old Testament offers eternal comfort to anyone needing to experience better health. "I am the Lord that healeth thee." (Exodus 15:26) The Bible speaks of the all-power of God, Spirit. It tells of men and women through the ages who have proved God's uplifting and healing power. Paaramount among these, Christ Jesus put his total trust in God in all the circumstances of daily life. He did mighty works of healing through what he knew of God's power and of man's nature as the child of God.
Christians very rightly gain tremendous inspiration from studying Jesus' life and works. A person could never feel too much reverence for what our Saviour said, taught, and did for us. But it is equally right for you and me to understand the Christ, or Truth, demonstrated in his life, words, and works. Our Master's unequaled example was not merely to inspire mankind but to help us to understand how to be free from every form of material bondage, physical suffering included. He promises, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also." (John 14:12).
This can be accomplished as one understand the spiritual truths, or laws, underlying Jesus' words and deeds. Explained fully and clearly in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, this scientificaly Christian way of health does not ignore disease; it undermines the very foundation of disease. It enables one to master fear and the discord associated with it, through applying to one's own life the spiritual truths found in Jesus' teachings and acts.
Showing the spiritual nature of health, Christian Science teaches that God, Spirit, who maintains man, knows nothing about sickness, nor does His creation, man. This might seem unrealistic to some people. Nonetheless, such a view is backed up by the first account of creation in the Bible, where man is declared to be the handiwork of God. Since you and I are actually God's spiritual, perfect offspring, we can't be deprived of God's care, can't be robbed of the spiritual well-being He provides. This is our true health, our wholeness. Since we have our perpetual being in Him, divine Spirit, we are not at the mercy of fear or disease.
The spiritual is the actual. Man is not, in fact, what the physical senses report -- flesh, blood, and bones. The material present an illlusory view of man. If man is the image of God, good, made in His likeness, then you and I are, of necessity, spiritual, perfect right now.
"To ignore God as of little use in sickness is a mistake. Instead of thrusting Him aside in times of bodily trouble and waiting for the hour of strength in which to acknowledge Him, we should learn that He can do all things for us in sickness as in health." (Science and Health, page 166)
I am not writing airy things to you. Were I to list in detail the physical healings I've had through the years from relying on God's power, you might not have time to read them. Just let me say that obtaining the book I mentioned above could be what you are looking for. What do you have to lose? Nothing. And you may well gain more than you know.
Monday, September 6, 2010
Going back a few weeks, it seems a woman felt it her religious duty to send me an email saying that she was praying for my soul, that she was burdened with the thought of my heading to hell! This isn't the first time someone has been disturbed that I am a student of Christian Science (as a recent blog post points out -- "Reply to someone trying to save me"). But this appeared more stirred up than some others. I answered her, in effect, that while I appreciated her concern, I wouldn't think of leaving my religion that I thanked God for every single day.
This continued for a bit. Then I received an email suggesting I visit the website that is run by former Christian Scientists who feel they now have Jesus and didn't before. I, of course, have read through this site and couldn't help but note the bitterness of some of the individuals who have posted on it. And in fact, it was being aware of their website that inspired me to start my own blog 2 years ago this month. I replied, "And I have a suggestion for you. There is a wonderful book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy that you might wish to check out." She replied that she was going to read this book that weekend.
Well, I didn't hear from her for a few days. Then last Friday afternoon, the phone rang and when I picked it up, it was this lady calling. Obviously had gotten my phone number from my blog. She was reading the textbook, said she didn't understand all of it (this is understandable). But the marvelous part was, she was not combative, sounded meek and sweet. I said, "Now we don't need to debate our beliefs. You are doing what you feel God wants, and so am I." I said this when she identified herself as the one who had been emailing. We chatted a bit about where do you live, I live in Michigan. Do you live in the mountains and so forth. I said, "God loves you, and so do I." And that was that.
I couldn't help noting that she sounded rather ill (which I denied) and it struck me that any truth which lights up for her in Mrs. Eddy's book can't help but help her.
Isn't God wonderful the way He works to bring good to all concerned!
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Because they have not been taught the joy and practicality of developing their spiritual sense,many people deprive themselves of a better and happier life, looking to some future heaven to provide them with fulfillment and happiness.
However, my religion shows that it is unnecessary for anyone to wait before experiencing happiness, health, and well-being. Man does not have to postpone good to some future time -- he receives it from God and reflects it now. God, divine Love, is contantly bestowing on His spiritual likeness, man, blessings that are satisfying and unending.
When Christ Jesus was approached by someone in need,, he did not refer that person to a future paradise. Instead, our Lord and Master blessed the receptive seeker right then and there. Did Jesus not say (Luke 17:21), "Behold, the kingdom of God is within you"? When we sincerely open our thoughts to the ever-present Christ, Truth, we are given the spiritual ideas to meet our present human need, whether for a job, companionship, safety, a place to live, or release from pain or suffering.
Does a loving human parent -- aware of his children's needs -- intentionally withhold good? How much more, then, may we expect from our heavenly Father, infinite, ever-present, divine Love!
Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, (171), "Through discernment of the spiritual opposite of materiality, even the way through Christ, Truth, man will reopen with the key of divine Science the gates of Paradise which human beliefs have closed, and will find himself unfallen, upright, pure and free."
One may have been taught by the religion he follows to look to heaven as the only place where a person can find constant good. But because Jesus declared that the kingdom of God, all good, is already within us, I would like to say to any non-Christian Scientists reading my blog (and I'm aware there are quite a number), accept what our Saviour teaches as the God-given truth. You do not have to wait for heaven!
Saturday, August 28, 2010
In my years of studying and practicing Christian Science, I had seen God's power demonstrated in so many ways. However, teeth problems were another situation. This day I longed to see His power at work with this tooth condition so I said to the dentist," I'll think about having it removed."
I went home and called a family member who also happens to be a Christian Science practitioner to pray for me. That week was a very challenging to me. But do you know, (and I recall the day), on Sunday of that week, I felt the healing taking place. I was so grateful to be feeling better. And the interesting part was what took place over the next few days. My ear began draining yukky stuff (won't go into too much detail on this) and within a week, I was completely free of the infection. And when I next went back to the dentist for teeth cleaning, I asked him if such a thing could happen. He said, "I don't know. I've never heard of this before." But I know, and Christian Scientists know, that God can do what man cannot. I still have that tooth and it's perfectly sound.
How can I ever be thankful to God enough for revealing to Mary Baker Eddy the divine laws that underlay what our blessed Master, Christ Jesus, employed in his sublime healing and saving work!
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Since one hundred percent obedient
Is what our Master was we see,
Making our own terms with God
Will never be allowed you and me.
Life shows us this:
Suffering almost always does.
But by whatever way we come
To learn to say (and mean)
"Do with my life as You know best,"
Only then do we know real joy,
Feel deep peace of mind,
Experience what Jesus taught and knew --
That our loving Father longs to see
All His children absolutely blest.
Is the one sure way.
(From my first published book,
"For Love of Christ" --
Thursday, August 19, 2010
A few years ago, a dear lady who tried every way she could think of to dissuade me from Christian Science received a, I trust, loving reply from me. This stopped it, and I excerpt some of the thoughts I shared with her, below:
Since I see no other way to follow in Jesus' footsteps 100% without striving to understand how to heal as he did--through the aid of Christian Science -- I ask myself, how can you be 100% obedient to his commandments? Just a thought I have, and have had. This isn't to say the road isn't terribly rugged for followers of my religion at times. You would have to have stayed with its teachings these past few years to understand just how rugged. But I could not go one day without its truths that encourage and help us to rely on God for every problem we have.
Christ and Christian Science are what I need. More than I could desire, in fact. And my admiration and respect for Mary Baker Eddy, who as you will recall, once wrote, 'I love Jesus more than any man who ever was and is' can't be shaken. I do not know where I would be without CS and could never pay off my indebtedness to God for making it available in my life. As you know, my mother left the Methodist church she loved when CS healed her dramatically of something she had suffered for years which kind doctors could not relieve her of.
I know you are genuinely doing what you feel your beliefs endorse. But your praying for my "soul" is not going to change my beliefs -- no, my convictions -- in the least. So, let us agree to part in love for Christ our Saviour."
Sunday, August 15, 2010
is somewhat like
a child's Yo-Yo:
do you remember
playing with one?
Send it out,
bak it comes.
When love impels
though not always
from recepient per se,
or in kind,
will do what Jesus
said it would:
"Give, and it shall be given
unto you; good measure, pressed
down, and shaken together, and
so full of good
for all concerned.
God's law of love,
impartially covering all,
sees that this is done.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
The woman who discovered my religion writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" on the topic of becoming closer to God, finding out our true selfhood as His image and likeness: "This scientific sense of being, forsaking matter for Spirit, by no means suggests man's absorption into Deity and the loss of his identity, but confers upon man enlarged individuality, a wider sphere of thought and action, a more expansive love, a higher and more permanent peace." (Page 265)
I have certainly found this to be the case. God has opened up channels for blessing others beyond anything I could have imagined even 4 years ago. And I am not talking just in my locality, but all over this planet.
To go back to when my first book was published: my sole hope was not to just share pretty poetry and interesting essays with others, though there have been plenty of them devoted to the beautiful things in our Father's universe. And I know some readers have found enjoyment, on a certain level.
And frequenting the local public library where I grew up, to check out as many books as they would let me have, I thought how nice it would be to have a book of mine on the shelf of some library. But what I was aiming for in my 4 books so far, and the one due out in September, is to bring God to the thoughts of the reader--to honor our Master, Christ Jesus, and publish the Good News of Christ's saving power. And the heartwarming results of this! rather than just earn money for my books, I wished them to be accepted in public libraries where they could more widely bless. And the places where they have been accepted, and the feedback I have received from readers in many countries, has nearly overwhelmed me at times.
To give my readers an idea of how God has brought about a "wider sphere of thought and action" in my life, let me list just some of the foreign libraries where my books presently are. Too many here in the USA to list.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Port Adelaide, South Australia
Noumea, New Caledonia
Bangor, Northern Ireland
Manilla, the Philippines
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
Fort Saskatchewan, Canada
Isle of Man
East Kilbride, Scotland
Hong Kong, China
Raratonga, Cook Islands
Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Rio de Janiero, Brazil
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dorado, Puerto Rico
Cork City, Ireland
Dunedin, New Zealand
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Wellington, New Zealand
Hamilton, New Zealand
Rotterdam, the Netherlands
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Grenada, West Indies
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Aitkenvale; Queensland, Australia
Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
Selkirk, Scottish Borders
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
Tauranga, New Zealand
Greater Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
St. Andrews, Scotland
Hastings, New Zealand
The way God's goodness is poured out on us, I except to hear from many more. I suspect there are more libraries that have put my books in their collections being that not all foreign librarians take the time to send me a letter that has to be translated into English. But I'm thrilled with the letters I have received.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Jesus said of His words that they shall not pass away, though everything else perish. And those adoring souls who do what they can, who use whatever ability they feel God has given them, can see their poetry -- if they listen to inspiration divine -- reach the hearts of those now living. And those lives yet to be. Can we who are His think of any activity higher?
Saturday, August 7, 2010
I have felt a sense of awe that when the tempter went at our Master to try to get him to magnify himself, pursue aims just for himself, he dealt with the evil immediately. He didn't fall for it, knew better than to have in thought anything other than seeing that his Father was glorified. In Jesus' case, and aspiration and actions were 100% pure.
For what it's worth to someone reading this blog, I have found that subjugating self to being about God's business doesn't take anything good away from us. It doesn't cause us to shut down and no long be able to employ talents. Not at all. Areas of usefulness will probably not be in the direction we once outlined for ourselves. But when we desire to serve Him, He sees to it that wider avenues of blessing others open up before us. They never fail to, when our motives are pure, and we want God to get the glory--be in the limelight, so to speak.
On the topic of laboring more selflessly, the woman who founded my religion has a statement that has always impressed me. She writes: "Goodness and benevolence never tire. They maintain themselves and others and never stop from exhaustion. He who is afraid of being too generous has lost the power of being magnanimous. The best man or woman is the most unselfed." ("First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, page 165)
I am so thankful to have countless examples of selfless men and woman down the years who being Christ's followers, did the praying and struggling at times to overcome self, in order to be more useful to God and mankind.