I grew up depending on God. But I never thought of Him as the source of my health. That old attitude seems odd, now that I can look back on more than two decades of total reliance on Him. Through prayer I have recovered quickly from all kinds of physical ailments-from flu, to sprains and other injuries, to heart attack.
What formed the link in my thought between God and consistent physical healing was the book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science. This book not only tells how Christ Jesus healed people but also explains clearly how each of us can follow his example.
Because I had thought of myself as a combination of matter and spirit, these statements from Science and Health were inspiring to me: "Become conscious for a single moment that Life and intelligence are purely spiritual,-neither in nor of matter,-and the body will then utter no complaints. . . . Hence the hope of the promise Jesus bestows: 'He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also . . .' " (p. 14). Never before had I thought of being always and only spiritual. Yet, as I considered Jesus' teachings, I began to see them in a new light. He himself said, "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing" (John 6:63).
The Bible shows that Jesus never gave or recommended medication. He turned to God in prayer with such clarity of thought that even people with severe illnesses were healed instantly. Jesus didn't go around saying that he was the source of this healing power. Instead he said, "I can of mine own self do nothing" (John 5:30). He indicated that healing comes solely from turning to God.
Spiritual healing was almost entirely lost in less than four centuries following the early Christians. It began to be restored after Christian Science was discovered in the late nineteenth century. More than nine million copies of Science and Health, which explains the nature of Jesus' prayer and healing work, have been sold. The book declares, "It is neither Science nor Truth which acts through blind belief, nor is it the human understanding of the divine healing Principle as manifested in Jesus, whose humble prayers were deep and conscientious protests of Truth,-of man's likeness to God and of man's unity with Truth and Love" (p. 12).
Christian Science does not ask anyone to believe blindly in God, but rather it asks that we understand that divine power is ours according to God's laws. God is the divine Principle of healing. Once this true view of God takes shape in thought, we see everything differently. Instead of thinking of God's help as random and of healing as something that may or may not happen, we understand Him to be reliable and trustworthy. Then, when we face problems, big or small, we are less likely to be afraid; we know there is a healing choice. Instead of accepting the trouble, whatever it may be, we can turn expectantly to God.
I know this makes a tremendous difference. For example, one night I felt all the symptoms of the flu coming on. I had been around people who had these symptoms. In the past I would never have thought of prayer as an option; I would have simply shrugged my shoulders and prepared to be sick.
But not after reading Science and Health. This time I began to pray. I had found many ideas in the book on how to pray. So I began to declare silently that I was (and would always be) spiritual. I affirmed that no one could be outside of God's love. Also, that since God is omnipresent, there is no place where sickness can exist. Embraced by God, who is ever-present Love, none of us has to be sick. I claimed these facts as specifically true in my own life. Within about fifteen minutes I was totally well. And I remained well.
I could give literally hundreds of other examples. You can learn to know God's healing power, too. In explaining the Bible's message, Science and Health offers a wholly joy-filled, healing way of life.