IF you or a friend has been diagnosed as having some serious disease-or if you just wish to pray about disease-there is something you can turn to. It is Christian Science-the Science of Christ.
This Science is the essence of Christ Jesus' teachings; it is literally the law of God. When accepted into our lives, and allowed to inform our thoughts and actions, it cannot fail to provide the help we need. Christian Science operates from this standpoint: reality is spiritual, governed by God; man is spiritual and perfect because he is made in God's likeness. Man's purpose is to express the qualities of God, such as purity, intelligence, love, and strength. God's qualities are always good.
If you compare this perfect condition with human existence, where people are often diseased and in trouble, the divine reality may seem impossibly idealistic. That is because you are thinking of man as material, or as a mixture of the material and the spiritual. Christian Science proves, however, that everyone's true nature is and always has been completely spiritual. Material existence, with all its troubles that seem so real, is not the absolute truth about anyone.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, makes this clear in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: ''If a sense of disease produces suffering and a sense of ease antidotes suffering, disease is mental, not material. Hence the fact that the human mind alone suffers, is sick, and that the divine Mind alone heals'' (p. 270).
Here divine Mind is synonymous with God. The presence of divine Mind heals by correcting human thought. To the degree that you accept your true being as God's spiritual idea, you learn to know more closely the goodness and lovingkindness of God. Recognizing His presence as the only presence, and letting divine Love and Truth fill your consciousness, effectively eliminates from thought anything that is not like Him, whether this is disease, anger, fear, or some other evil element.
Considering these spiritual truths is one way you can pray. And praying along these lines, you can grow in the conviction that nothing unlike God can actually be a part of man. So disease, fear, self-hatred, and so forth, have no real place in anyone's life. Each of us needs to learn this, instead of being lured into believing that life is material.
One fact you can count on is that God, who is infinite Life, never causes disease. And He certainly does not cause death. The life of Jesus makes this clear, since he was resurrected from death; the Bible tells us plainly that he came to save mankind. He is often called the Saviour. This means that God never causes anyone to suffer with disease, nor does He ever condemn anyone to death. To spiritual man-and this is who we are in fact-death never comes.
Whatever the apparent causes are for disease, we must, through God, move beyond them. As Paul wrote in his letter to the Philippians: ''Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus'' (3:13, 14). This ''high calling of God'' is an opportunity to put our lives on a more spiritual basis. Thinking of ourselves in spiritual terms rather than as material beings at the mercy of biological and chemical forces, enables us to see that there is no material ''place'' in us or in someone else where any disease can operate.
The Science of Christ shifts the balance of thought, opening the door to mental and physical healing. And this shift, though perhaps in small ways at first, makes all the difference. It is even capable of healing instantaneously.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits:
who forgiveth all thine iniquities;
who healeth all thy diseases.
Psalms 103:2, 3