Capsules or God's comforting presence?

I CAN'T take those capsules anymore. My body has built up an immunity to the medicine.'' ''I've given up taking that drug. It produces bad side effects.''

One sometimes hears such comments.

Where, then, can people go for help?

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There is another way to go. In today's drug-oriented society, there are some who have never swallowed a pill or taken drugs for an ailment.

I'm one of those. As a child I was taught to look to God for comfort and freedom from any trouble, and He never has let me down. In our family we've experienced the spiritual healing of numerous ailments. I've been freed from such ills as the flu, abdominal pains, recurring dizziness, and many others.

These healings have come about through my own prayers or by seeking help from a Christian Science practitioner, one who is devoting full time to the healing ministry of Christian Science. It has been comforting through the years to turn to God whenever illness has threatened my well-being.

One might ask, What do you do when sickness confronts you or pain shrieks at you?

First, you can refuse to be afraid. God is on your side, defending, upholding , strengthening you. In fact, He made you as the expression of His perfect being. This is the spiritual reality of man.

No power can withstand the divine all-power. In truth God is the only power. The Bible represents God as saying, ''Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.'' n1

n1 Isaiah 41:10.

We don't have to accept discord as a legitimate part of God's creation. We can refuse to acknowlege its supposed validity, because God has not sent it. God does not permit evil. The Bible describes Him as Love and Spirit, the supreme intelligence of the universe, causing only good and seeing everything He has made as good. n2 Perfect God was pleased with His creation and everything in it. This has not changed.

n2 See Genesis 1:31.

Where, then, does suffering come from? From what St. Paul called the ''carnal mind,'' which he said is ''enmity against God.'' n3 This supposed mind would have us think of ourselves as confined to flesh and blood, subject to disease and deterioration. But as Paul continues, ''Ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.'' n4 As we express love, forgiveness, mercy, honesty, purity, God's spirit dwells in us. We cannot be victimized by sickness as we come to realize that God is holding us forever intact, and as we strive to express the divine nature.

n3 Romans 8:7.

n4 Romans 8:9.

Clearly, Christ Jesus proved the continuity of good and his own God-given dominion over every condition. As sons and daughters of God, we too have dominion. God has provided us with freedom, health, and holiness. His grace and love are at hand. But we need to trust this comforting fact and to realize it more deeply and consistently.

I felt that comfort one day in an overheated, crowded store when I was suddenly taken with a nauseous headache. There was no quiet corner where I could retreat for prayer, no place to lie down. I couldn't have driven home at that point.

Even so, I quietly prayed, acknowledging God's unchanging love for His children and affirming my eternal unity with Him. This sentence by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, came to thought: ''Harmony is produced by its Principle, is controlled by it and abides with it.'' n5 Wasn't God, the producer of harmony, right there, controlling me? What comfort it was to know that God is uninterrupted Principle, always producing harmony. I realized that as His likeness I was abiding only in His harmony and that my well-being couldn't be intruded upon.

n5 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 304.

Jesus said to a woman whom he had healed, ''Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole.'' 6 My faith rested on the understanding that this same God-given authority, this tender touch of the healing Christ, was present with me.

n6 Matthew 9:22.

I felt enveloped in God's love, and the feeling of tension vanished. Shortly I was free from all nausea and pain and able to complete my errands.

This freedom did not come from a time-released capsule. It was the result of God's eternal, comforting presence. DAILY BIBLE VERSE I am the Lord that healeth thee. Exodus 15:26

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