MY family experienced health-care reform some years ago. My grandfather had a lung disease associated with his work in a foundry. His kindly doctors informed him that they had done all they could and that he would not live much longer. Then he turned to Christian Science and was healed through studying and applying its teachings. Since then, I've been healed many times myself through prayer in Christian Science. Is it any wonder that when I'm ill, this is the treatment that I reach for?
Christianity teaches that when we realize the love of God and the spiritual, perfect nature of man, and let Christly thoughts dominate our thinking, healing results. Is this not the ultimate reform in health care--a revolutionary, Bible-based reform?
The Bible's Old and New Testaments include examples of people experiencing the healing power of God through prayer, and these Scriptures are still the best authority on health care. The healings in the Bible point to a God-given Science of spiritual healing that is available to us today.
The Bible teaches that God is perfect Spirit, divine Love, and that man is the image and likeness of God. This reflection of perfect Spirit is not material, but spiritual and perfect. Man is made up of spiritual qualities, of attributes that reflect God's nature, such as love, wisdom, purity, integrity. This perfect selfhood is perpetually harmonious and whole. An understanding of these spiritual facts is what brings healing in Christian Science.
Christ Jesus healed many people, and he did so without medication, without examining bodily symptoms or ascertaining a sufferer's health history. Jesus' healings were based on his understanding of spiritual reality, and show that illness comes from thinking one is separated from God, from crediting a disease with more power than God, or from being ignorant of God's love and ability to heal.
People who came to Jesus for help found themselves inspired, purified, spiritually reborn, as well as physically healed. Healing was the effect of that spiritual cleansing and renewal. For example, Luke's Gospel tells us that Jesus healed a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years. She had made her way through the crowd to touch just the edge of his clothes and was healed. Even though Jesus was on his way to another place where healing was urgently needed, he stopped to be sure that this woman understood what had, in fact, healed her. ``Daughter,'' he said, ``be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole'' (8:48).
Today, more churches than ever before are holding healing services. It is a modest trend, but isn't it reasonable to feel that healing that comes of God is the kind of healing that was illustrated so perfectly by Christ Jesus?
Mary Baker Eddy, the Founder of the Church of Christ, Scientist, discovered that healing is a natural effect of Christian rebirth. She was healed through prayer when physicians could not help her. Describing how deep communion with God and Christian regeneration result in healing, she writes in her Miscellaneous Writings: ``Nothing aside from the spiritualization--yea, the highest Christianization--of thought and desire, can give the true perception of God and divine Science, that results in health, happiness, and holiness'' (p. 15).
This spiritualization of our lives brings the Biblical reformation that renews our health and brings with it happiness and holiness transcending mere improvements in our physical well-being.