To heal, begin with God

If we want to heal through prayer, we have to start with God. The Bible brings this out. In both the Old and New Testaments there are many accounts of physical healing, and in each instance the healing can be attributed to, or is related to, an understanding faith in God. The most notable healer of all, Christ Jesus, indicated that healing is always God's work. He said, ''The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.'' n1 The Master had a clearer understanding of God than anyone before or after him, and therefore he healed with greater authority than anyone else.

n1 John 5:19.

Christian Science adheres strictly to the teachings of Jesus and strongly emphasizes that understanding God is the prime factor in healing. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, stresses the importance of beginning with God, and in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures she states: ''The starting-point of divine Science is that God, Spirit, is All-in-all, and that there is no other might nor Mind, - that God is Love, and therefore He is divine Principle.'' n2

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n2 Science and Health, p. 275.

As our comprehension of Deity grows, we are able to realize with greater clarity the nearness and power of God, and this leads to healing.

How may we best gain the needed understanding of Him? Through study and prayer - study of the Bible and prayer that acknowledges God's presence and all-power. This may require dedicated effort, but it is helpful to remember that God gives us the needed ability. Such study will reveal many statements that enable us to see more of the glory of God and of His divine nature.

Study of the Christian Science textbook is also invaluable. The definition of God on page 587 of the textbook, Science and Health, is a particularly helpful declaration of what God is. Valuable insights are gained by contemplating the meaning of each of the seven Bible-based terms for God given in this definition - Principle, Mind, Soul, Spirit, Life, Truth, and Love.

We are enriched and uplifted as we give thought to passages which declare that God is supreme, almighty, omniscient, ever-present, infinite, and the like. Added unfoldment comes as we enlarge our comprehension of God as the only cause, creator, controller, and governor. Discerning that God is Mind, the only source of intelligence, we see there cannot, in absolute truth, be a mortal, carnal mind, a source of evil thoughts.

With a clearer grasp of God's allness and ever-presence we can discern other basic spiritual facts: God's creation is good, spiritual, perfect, free from evil; one's true identity is made in God's image and is Godlike, spiritual, perfect. Consequently man cannot in reality be subject to sickness, disease, accident, evil of any kind, for evil is contrary to God and therefore unreal and powerless. These truths may seem unrealistic and impractical to the human mind, which labels evil a concrete reality. But when they are trusted and properly utilized, they bring healing to even the most stubborn problems.

One time during a tennis game I severely sprained my ankle. The pain was great, and I could not walk. I started at once to pray for healing of the situation. I began by refusing to be afraid, knowing that God is certainly not afraid and that man, His image, cannot be either. I turned my thought to God as this article outlines, and declared His allness and the consequent nothingness of evil, including accidents. I realized that my true being as a child of God could not be injured but was intact, despite the evidence of the physical senses.

I continued my declarations of truth, and within a short time the pain ceased; soon the healing was complete.

When we start with God and grow in our understanding of Him, we are being equipped to heal. DAILY BIBLE VERSE The Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us. Isaiah 33:22

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