One winter, during what people call "the flu season," everyone in my office except for me had come down with the illness. As the last person returned, he said to me, "You're next!"
I was ready with a response - "No, I'm not next." My reply was based on a statement that was familiar to me: "The issues of pain or pleasure must come through mind, and like a watchman forsaking his post, we admit the intruding belief, forgetting that through divine help we can forbid this entrance." That's found in "Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures," by Mary Baker Eddy, who found in the teachings of Christ Jesus the healing Science of God's law (Pgs. 392-393). It was in the light of this that I went on to tell my co-worker I refused to be "next."
Returning to my desk, I pondered my response. Over the years, I had become convinced that God loved me. That He was my eternal Father and Mother. Would a loving parent burden a child with illness? My conviction was the result of studying Christian Science, through which I'd gained an understanding that despite its appearance, sickness is illusion - unreal, not part of God's plan for His sons and daughters. An illusion has no power to become real.
The Bible states that God created "man" (inclusive of each one of us) spiritually, and gave us "dominion ... over all the earth" (see Gen. 1:26). Here, earth signifies all that is associated with matter (as opposed to Spirit, or God).
Most of us have been conditioned to believe that the earth dominates us. After all, we're physical, aren't we? Not really. Even a glimpse of the nature of God's spiritual creation can be enough to convince us that materiality is not substantial or final, is not our actual identity.
I gain these glimpses through reading the Bible along with Science and Health. As we become familiar with the truth of God, we gain the ability we need to resist inharmony of every sort. This is a mental resistance, whereby we're allowing spiritual understanding to supersede anything discordant, letting an ever-expanding knowledge of God and His creation overrule evil, which appears to discredit His good power.
I knew I would not get the flu, because I understood that I, as God's spiritual image, can express only what God creates: goodness, intelligence, integrity, purity, wholeness. The opposites, which He did not create - evil, unintelligence, sinfulness, impurity, disease - have no power. God has not caused them. That means He hasn't authorized them, and therefore that they have no real being.
Christ Jesus exemplified our spiritual perfection. He overcame every discord that confronted him. For example, he instantaneously healed a woman of a fever. The Bible says, "He touched her hand, and the fever left her." She was so well that "she arose, and ministered unto them" (Matt. 8:15). It was Jesus' healing thought that counteracted the possibility of illness appearing in human life. Science and Health offers this insight into how Jesus healed: "Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning mortal man appears to mortals. In this perfect man the Saviour saw God's own likeness, and this correct view of man healed the sick" (Pgs. 476-477).
We can learn to emulate Jesus' healing works. How? By holding firmly in our thought to the perfect identity we have in God. The spiritual identity. Jesus must have been convinced that there was no other. And he must have been unimpressed with illness, no matter how real it appeared to others.
I held firmly to the concept of my perfect identity, until I became thoroughly convinced that "the perfect man" is the only man and that this perfection applied to my situation (and to everyone's). I realized that God's law of harmony was supporting me and that it would never let me down. You can be assured that I did not come down with the flu at that time - or at any time in the 20 years since.
You, too, can rely on God's law of health during the so-called flu season, and at any time. This will enable you to prove that you are never prone to illness!
You can visit the home page of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, at (www.tfccs.com).