Thirsty?

MANY people are searching. They're thirsty for an understanding of existence that is reliable, and for a deeper sense of who they are. There's a great yearning in the world for an inner peace; for a solace that can't be broken. This is really an unquenched thirst for God.

The thirst isn't new. It has been around for thousands of years-probably since the first people walked the earth. Christ Jesus spoke about it in his Sermon on the Mount. He said, ''Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled'' (Matthew 5:6). This means wanting to understand God. And that does fill us. How? By revealing the spiritual facts of existence. These spiritual facts are found throughout the Bible. They include the basic truth that God is perfect and that He created us all perfect. When we turn to God in need, thirsting after spiritual understanding, we find a solace-the peace we're seeking. It lies in an understanding of God that is relevant to everyday life-applicable, because understanding God and His laws brings His power to our lives and brings satisfaction and transformation.

One place to learn more about God, besides in the Bible, is in a book that has satisfied the thirst of many people looking for a deeper understanding of God. This book is Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, written by Mary Baker Eddy. After this woman was healed of a near-fatal injury by reading the Bible, she wrote simply about her experience, ''The Bible was my textbook. It answered my questions as to how I was healed. . .'' (Retrospection and Introspection, p. 25). She spent the rest of her life elucidating to others what she learned from studying the Scriptures and from her discovery of Christian Science.

One thing that is particularly interesting about Science and Health is that people can be healed by reading it. In fact, the last one hundred pages are full of testimonies from individuals who were healed just this way. One testifier wrote, ''I was a great sufferer for many years from internal cancer and consumption. I was treated by the best of physicians . . . , and was finally given up as incurable, when I heard of Christian Science. . . . In three months' time, I was healed, the truth conveyed to me by this book being the healer, and not only of these diseases, but I was made whole mentally as well'' (pp. 610-611). This healing occurred years ago. But healings occur today as well. The same spiritual facts by which Jesus healed, and which healed that testifier, can heal now. These healings prove that, when one honestly searches for a spiritual understanding of God, it's found. This understanding cannot fail to satisfy any sincere searcher of the truth.

Recently the importance of searching for righteousness became obvious to me. I had been invited to speak to a university class about Christian Science. The night before the talk, I prayed. I wanted to be able to share with those in the classroom the spiritual truths that have touched my heart through studying Christian Science. I prayed to be able to help satisfy the hungering and thirsting of those in the class after righteousness-after a better understanding of God.

The next day I shared with them some experiences that I'd had. We talked about God as infinite good and all-power. And we talked about how Christian Science is based solely on the Bible. Mere curiosity turned to earnest questioning. The students began to ask if Christian Science had something for them. Perhaps they saw in it the ability to satisfy them. By the end of the hour, all of the ten students who had walked into the classroom not knowing much about Christian Science asked to have their own copies of Science and Health.

The book says this of such seeking: ''Millions of unprejudiced minds-simple seekers for Truth, weary wanderers, athirst in the desert-are waiting and watching for rest and drink. Give them a cup of cold water in Christ's name, and never fear the consequences'' (p. 570). Are you one of the millions of unprejudiced minds-a simple seeker for Truth, ''athirst in the desert?'' Are you looking for the rest and drink of a peaceful, productive life?

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