Beyond Hope and Faith

Bringing a spiritual perspective to daily life

When you need peace, comfort, or healing, having hope, an expectation of good, is a first step. Beyond hope would be faith and trust.

But beyond this is the inspired understanding of God, which heals. This involves finding the unbroken relation we have to Him as His spiritual sons and daughters. When we have the conviction that God is All, that He is Love, and that He is in control of creation, this brings peace and healing in time of need.

An event recounted in the Bible illustrates this. Sitting outside a temple was a lame man. He was begging for money. Two disciples of Jesus Christ, Peter and John, had just arrived. Now, this man was hoping for one thing from them - money. However, they gave him a gift much more precious than money. According to the book of Acts, "Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him [the lame man] by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God" (3:6-8).

I have learned in my study of the Bible that listening to the teachings of Jesus and following them was what enabled Peter and John to bring healing to that man. They healed through an understanding that God loved the man and had created him perfect.

Just so, a growing understanding of God enables us to expect healing today - the understanding that you and I are God's perfect child, His spiritual image. God does not create His children to suffer or ever to be without good. Changing our thought from believing that we are limited and mortal to knowing that we are made spiritual and whole brings healing at any time.

How can you learn more about God and about this identity you have in Him? A good place is in your own study of the Bible. And a book that helps here is the textbook of Christian Science, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," published in 1875 by Mary Baker Eddy. Together, these books offer spiritual inspiration regarding the nature of God and His healing love for each of us.

The desire to gain spiritual understanding is certainly an attainable goal. Science and Health refers to God as divine Life, Truth, and Love: "Life, Truth, and Love are the realities of divine Science. They dawn in faith and glow full-orbed in spiritual understanding. As a cloud hides the sun it cannot extinguish, so false belief silences for a while the voice of immutable harmony, but false belief cannot destroy Science armed with faith, hope, and fruition" (Pg. 298).

There was a time in my life when harmony seemed anything but "immutable." After more than 20 years of marriage, I was ready to pack up and leave. A friend persuaded me to seek marriage counseling. The counselor I saw said it would take many months to correct the challenges my husband and I were having - and even then she couldn't promise anything. I went home feeling hopeless.

Then I did what I should have done in the first place. In prayer, I turned to God. I couldn't accept that discouraging assessment of my marriage, and decided to listen for the voice of God. My thought changed. I found myself leaning only on Him for my help.

What I didn't know at the time was that my husband was praying also.

That evening, we had a long talk. The feelings of pride, anger, and upset gave way to ones of forgiveness and love. There was no need for us to separate. No need for counseling. We saw that the need was for us both to express the spiritual qualities of humility, gentleness, and kindness. My husband and I agree that this was a healing. It was so natural that the discord in our relationship was completely gone. Today we remain happily married.

Learning to express God's love for us heals discord of every kind - including sickness. If you are feeling challenged in your life, hoping for good to happen, even doubting that it ever could, you can find help by changing your thought. You can gain the spiritual understanding that good is happening right now because God is here. You don't have to wait for good, because you are never apart from God.

Understanding that God loves us heals!

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