Higher ground after the floods

A Christian Science perspective on daily life.

One can't help being moved by the many scenes of people in several nations, each trying to deal in their own way with the effects of flooding. For some, the loss of farm animals is a devastating blow. For others, their homes and all the photographs and other memories within them have been wiped out. And the losses can seem so real because actual objects are damaged or gone.

At first, it may seem like small comfort to say that prayer can help, but it actually can make a huge difference. The curator at a small museum learned this when the museum's basement was flooded after storm drains overflowed into it. Craft materials, objects in the museum's collection, and books – to mention just a few things – were in the flooded area. Besides that, it appeared that the newly repaired floor had been severely damaged.

Just the sheer work involved was so daunting that no one else wanted to help. So she worked alone, accompanied by the one thing she felt really would help: prayer. She found great strength in the Lord's Prayer, which Jesus gave to his followers. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, provided a spiritual interpretation of this prayer in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures." Her book explains that the principles Jesus lived by are an actual Science that any of us can apply to gain healing in our lives.

The curator determined to cling to this idea of Christian Science being a provable Science as she began to investigate the damage. The Lord's Prayer begins, "Our Father, which art in heaven," and Mrs. Eddy's interpretation reads, "Our Father-Mother God, all-harmonious" (p. 16). The woman thought of the tenderness of a divine Father-Mother, giving only harmony and good, never injury or evil. At first, the evidence of loss seemed substantial. But instead of being discouraged, she began to pray more vigorously, affirming that evil had no place in God's kingdom. And that both she and the museum were in that kingdom.

As she persisted in prayer, she found more and more boxes that were not damaged even though they were all in the same location. Some materials related to objects in the collection were unsalvageable, however, and many art and office supplies were destroyed. But with great joy she found that only one object in the collection had been affected – and it was repairable. Many had been saved even though the outward appearance of the boxes looked grim. Even the damage to the floor was less than expected.

She continued to pray to know that there could be no loss in God's all-harmonious kingdom, and a few weeks later, with no special effort on her part, she gained access to many new office supplies at no charge.

This experience was a much simpler one than the conditions many flood victims are facing, but the Science, or law of God, that it proved can be a help to all who are facing loss. God's kingdom is one of harmony, good, peace, and safety for everything essential to life and joy. And this is where each of us truly lives. As we pray to see the reality of God's kingdom in our lives, we gain its blessings. It opens our eyes to good we may have overlooked until now. It makes us grateful for help from others. It provides strength to face difficult situations with persistence and courage. It also gives each one the blessing of God's love and tenderness, especially when the burden of loss feels overwhelming.

This tender, comforting power is Christ, the spiritual idea of God's love for all of His children. Even now Christ is with each individual who is dealing with flood damage or under threat from floods. Christ is strengthening emergency personnel and giving them intuitions that will keep them safe. Christ is with you – with all of us – saving and healing.

This is what the Lord says ... When you pass through the waters, I will be with you. Isaiah 43:1, 2 (New International Version)

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