A Pair of Adventure Books
Bringing a spiritual perspective to daily life
If you went into a bookstore, in what section would you expect to find the Bible? Religion? Probably so. But have you ever thought of the Bible as an adventure book? To me it is, with accounts of people who proved that the power of God is available in every imaginable circumstance.
Moses, for one, bravely led the children of Israel out of Egyptian captivity and on to the land God had promised them. Enemies, the weather, hunger, internal strife-obstacles of every kind-could not stop them. All along the way they saw God to be omnipotent and good.
The Hebrew Scriptures are full of compelling stories, spiritual adventures, about people who loved God supremely and courageously. Daniel tamed the lions in their den through his faith in God. The shepherd David saved his people from Goliath and the Philistines with a similar trust in the Almighty. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego walked unharmed in the flames of a furnace, through the protection their love of God provided them.
The Gospels, recording the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, show that God is perfect, divine Love, and that we are the expression of this Love. Jesus lifted the human consciousness to a purer understanding of God. Not only did he preach the Word of God, but he also practiced it by healing disease, raising the dead, feeding the hungry, stilling storms, and ultimately overcoming death himself and ascending beyond human sight. He promised, "He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also" (John 14:12). In the development of the early Christian Church, these works did carry on, against many odds, and the Bible says, "By the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people" (Acts 5:12).
In the nineteenth century a woman named Mary Baker Eddy embarked on the adventure of gaining from the Bible and Jesus' words a clear and practical understanding of God. This led to her discovery that there is a Science of healing that we can learn and practice in our own lives today. Her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures is the textbook of Christian Science. It is a companion to the Bible, leading the reader on a spiritual journey. In another book she wrote, "We live in an age of Love's divine adventure to be All-in-all" (The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, p. 158).
My son and I like to read adventure books at his bedtime. Most of them are about boys who have learned valuable life lessons in going through exciting and often dangerous experiences. We always accompany this with reading from the Bible and Science and Health. He especially loves Bible stories and what they tell him about his own relationship to God.
One evening we came to this discussion of who God is: "The great I AM; the all-knowing, all-seeing, all-acting, all-wise, all-loving, and eternal; Principle; Mind; Soul; Spirit; Life; Truth; Love; all substance; intelligence" (Science and Health, p. 587). My son read this out loud. He told me that this was the class motto in his Sunday School class at church. He paused. Then he said, "I had a headache, but now it's all gone!" He had not complained about a headache, but he recognized that his understanding of God had brought healing. To me this was an example of how quick and simple spiritual insight into God's nature brings us into accord with perfect harmony, including physical well-being.
This reminded me of one of my own healings. For many years I frequently suffered from severe tension headaches. When I began the adventure of earnestly studying Christian Science in an effort to learn more of God, the headaches stopped. When one's consciousness is in tune with God's harmony, his or her body cannot ache.
Christian Science bookstores, known as Reading Rooms, are located throughout the world. They carry this pair of adventure books, which reveal the one God, who is all-good and who governs your life as He did the lives of those Bible characters. Understanding Him guides and heals you. Both the Bible and Science and Health are available in many languages. Whatever the language, they speak the same universal truth, leading you in the journey, the adventure, of spiritual living.