I love crisp fall days. I love walking my dog and smelling dry leaves, and in my neighborhood I’ve watched the pure joy that kids have in raking up those leaves into a big pile and then jumping into them.
But the changing season also brings fear of disease, and it seems that wherever I go I see advertisements for flu shots. My e-mail brings banners enticing me to buy remedies against the common cold. I wouldn’t disparage anybody’s chosen means to keep themselves and their families healthy, but I’ve found that there is another way: prayer.
Although my parents were Christian Scientists, they didn’t push me into it. But as a teenager I had a disease – which was never diagnosed, but exhibited all the symptoms of mumps – healed in just a day or so through relying on Christian Science. I read the Bible and passages in books by Mary Baker Eddy, who founded Christian Science. Those passages helped me understand the Holy Scriptures in a practical way, one that healed me. From this experience I realized that my folks did have something, and that I could take advantage of it, too.
At this point I don’t remember what specific Bible verses or passages from Mrs. Eddy’s writings I read, but I do recall feeling better almost immediately, and within a day or so the symptoms disappeared. So as a teenager I made the commitment to join the church. I wanted to learn more about God and my relationship to Him, and I found that Christian Science not only made sense, it was practical. It really did heal.
And it has continued to meet my health challenges for half a century. Christian Science teaches me that God is infinite good and all-power. God fills all space, and His action is the only action going on. Consequently, whatever appears to be a reversal of that all-active good is actually an illusion – no more real than the mirage of water on the road on a hot day.
I love Jesus, the Son of God, for his unparalleled work for humanity. He showed through his healing and his teaching – especially in his Sermon on the Mount – that we don’t have to bow down to any other power than God, than good. He taught us that we carry the kingdom of heaven within us, within our consciousness. So as we keep our thought straight and God-centered, we can have better, happier, healthier lives.
Not long ago I awoke with the feeling that a cold was coming on. It was very tempting to want to pull the covers over my head and try to sleep it off. Instead, I reached for my medicine, but that medicine was mental and spiritual, and I found it by studying the Bible and applying its words of hope to my present situation.
One of the psalms in the Bible says: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea” (46:1, 2). I realized that God isn’t removed from us. God has no hate toward us, His beloved creation. God loves each one of us individually, and so He really is my “very present help.” I realized that God was closer to me than my breath. He is filled with Love, and His Love fills me, animates me, keeps me going. Divine Love is so profound; it was all I could think about for a few minutes. And the symptoms of the approaching cold disappeared.
The voice of Christian Science is able to speak to everyone who seeks healing. It has nothing to do with the power of the human mind over matter but relies absolutely on the divine Mind of Christ. Christian Science presents God’s all power, which heals today. And even more important than the physical healing, it spiritualizes our thinking and brings renewal.