Repeating the wonder
REPETITION seems to feature prominently in human experience, from what some consider the tedium of daily routine to the tyranny of addiction. But the only power of a repetitive thought pattern rests on our own consent to it, either conscious or unconscious. We are always free to choose our own patterns or to change them--or better still, to be continuously responsive to the one divine Mind, or God, and to the infinite variety of ideas that come from Him, always demanding individual expression. God is good. Good is infinite. And man, as God has truly created him, is the expression of His infinite, unfolding goodness, not a mortal passively acting out the dictates of human thought patterns. Understanding this can bring freedom from harmful, repetitive conditions, including symptoms of disease. Unless the individual asserts his God-given control and refuses to believe that matter has volition, or that it can do what it seems to have done before or what it appears to have done to other people, the cycle of symptoms will tend to repeat itself. But Christ Jesus instantaneously healed conditions that seemed to be deeply ingrained in human consciousness. Through healing prayer he brought regeneration to human thinking, which erased the pattern of disease. His prayer wasn't an exercise in willpower or mere positive thinking. Nor was it some kind of formula. Didn't Jesus' prayers embody the living Christ, the healing power of God, which he came to demonstrate? A woman learned something of this divine power soon after she took up the study of Christian Science. She had been told when she was a girl at school that she would always have to have her ears syringed regularly, because the apertures in them were unusually small. For years she had complied with this requirement, and it had become a fixed routine. Now she recognized this as a limitation, and she decided to break away from it. One ear behaved quite normally, but the other one became blocked, which impaired her hearing. She tried to open her thought more unreservedly to the healing power of God and His Christ, and to recognize the divine control over every aspect of her being. One day not long afterward a large piece of wax worked its way out of her ear without any syringing. Her hearing immediately returned to normal, and she didn't have any more trouble with it. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes: ``There is more Christianity in seeing and hearing spiritually than materially. There is more Science in the perpetual exercise of the Mind-faculties than in their loss. Lost they cannot be, while Mind remains. The apprehension of this gave sight to the blind and hearing to the deaf centuries ago, and it will repeat the wonder.'' 1 Healing prayer reflects the power of the one Mind and therefore is not merely repetitive. It should always have an element of freshness and wonder in it, because the divine Mind is infinitely wonderful. True prayer is so much more than just saying the same words over and over again. Prayer can't be genuinely effective if it imitates the unthinking repetitiveness of the conditions it seeks to remedy. Jesus said: ``When ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.'' 2 Sometimes prayer can be quite wordless, just a silent feeling of nearness to God. It brings the right thing to think or say to help the particular situation. Understanding this makes human thought more spontaneous, confident, and clear; less stubborn, doubtful, or confused. Then we can go on repeating the wonder instead of just repeating the problem. 1 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 487. 2 Matthew 6:7, 8.