As fears about deficits rise in the eurozone, austerity has become the word of the day. The troubled economies of smaller nations, especially Greece, have driven other members of the European Union to embrace austerity, even in the face of threatened and actual strikes, as well as a general atmosphere of fear about what these cuts will mean for their citizens.
Some analysts of the world economy agree that the only safe path is to cut budgets severely, even though the impact of these changes could be very painful. Others have criticized the American effort to follow a more moderate route. A number of US economists warn that severely cutting back on spending and related austerity measures could precipitate an even deeper recession, such as the one that occurred in the 1930s. Just before the Group of 20 meeting at the end of June, Martin Crutsinger of the Associated Press noted that “leaders of the world’s major economies will come to Canada facing a good deal of tension over the best approaches to make sure that the global economy continues to emerge from the worst recession in decades.”
Uncertainty and fear are not good groundwork for unity and progress, especially when they are felt on a global scale. It’s vital to bring prayer to bear on the issue, so that even if nations pursue different paths, they can do so in the spirit of fellowship, uninfluenced by fear, doubt, or anger.
The Christianly scientific thinker can approach such problems with the knowledge that healing doesn’t come through accepting distressing material conditions as real and asking God to fix them. Rather, scientific prayer insists that divine harmony is the already established law of being, and that a higher, spiritual economy puts everyone under the control of a totally good and impartial God. This is true not just for individual conditions, but for global challenges as well.
In her landmark book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and established Christian Science, described what happens when human consciousness becomes convinced of this law of harmony: “Both Science and consciousness are now at work in the economy of being according to the law of Mind, which ultimately asserts its absolute supremacy” (p. 423). Note the words “are now at work.” Today’s prayer can exude the spirit of confidence that says rescue isn’t distant and doubtful. It is present now.
The Bible is filled with examples of people who saw this economy at work in the moment. Through Moses’ obedience to God, the Israelites had food and water in the wilderness. Elisha’s prayers multiplied a pot of oil into a supply sufficient to pay the debts of a woman who had been left destitute after her husband’s death. An army that needed water in the desert was advised by Elisha to dig ditches. By morning, the once dry and empty spaces were filled with sufficient water for man and beast.
Christ Jesus proved time and again the power of divine law to supersede the material conditions, and he did this with consistent confidence in God’s power to reveal solutions and provide for human needs. In one of his parables, he made the point that healing and safety come from one’s choice of building materials: rock versus sand. One might liken these materials to the thoughts one chooses to accept into consciousness. Thoughts built on the sand of material thinking and living have nothing to support them, and will inevitably collapse. Thoughts that rest on God and His goodness are built on rock and can withstand local and global storms.
So within the world’s economy, it’s logical that decisions built on fear and uncertainty only increase fear and uncertainty. Those based on the Christ are built on rock. Christ, which Christian Science explains as the spiritual nature God has given each of us, is at the heart of all being. Christ reveals Spirit as our actual Creator, the one who nurtures and protects its whole creation. Christ, the voice of Spirit speaking to each of us, can guide individuals and nations to the solution that is right for them.
The voice of fear and uncertainty may seek to drown out Christ’s message, but it is not part of God’s plan and never has been. Taking a stand on this issue is vital, so that even if individual nations pursue different courses, the spirit of love and unity among them can be strong. God, the only Mind, must ultimately lead each nation and individual to inspired and courageous answers that are supported by divine law.
Analyzing data and developing individual solutions for oneself, or working with others on behalf of one’s nation, are important activities. But our choices will become more confident and more practical as we are able to trust that ultimately “the law of Mind” is guiding and directing. This is the law that Moses, Elisha, and Jesus – among many others – relied on in order to prove the presence of needed supply, of healing, and of peace to the people who came to them for help.
Now, in our time, we are privileged to turn to this same law of God, and to let it work in “the economy of being” and in our hearts to save and unify an uneasy world.
From an editorial in the Christian Science Sentinel.