Meeting supply and demand
A Christian Science perspective: How can we overcome financial adversity?
I get a daily snapshot of the global economy from the news coverage I hear on my way to work each morning. As I listen to the radio, I’ve learned to give deep, meaningful prayer to news going on – especially to recent reports about the financial challenges people are facing.
In my prayers, I can’t help but notice that the Bible presents a radically different view of supply and demand – one where thousands of Israelite refugees fleeing from Egypt found food and water in unlikely places (see Exodus 16:11-16; 17:6), where a prophet was fed by ravens (see I Kings 17:1-6), and later helped a widow and her son survive a famine (I Kings 17:10-17). Understanding the ability of divine Spirit to transcend material limitations, Christ Jesus fed five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish (Matthew 14:15-21).
To me, these accounts demonstrate the economy of divine Love. In her textbook of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy explains, “Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p.494). This is more than a nice saying. It is a provable law. And a friend of mine shared with me a specific example of how that law operates:
Some years ago when oil and automotive gas prices were extremely high, my friend became desperate over finances. She shared her home with an acquaintance who had been laid off, so their combined income for paying for household expenses had been cut in half. They had economized in every possible way, but when a major expense came along, for which there was no extra money, it was a major blow.
As a Christian Scientist, my friend knew that she could turn to God in this time of trouble. She prayed earnestly, recalling not only Mrs. Eddy’s statement about Love’s ability to meet every human need, but also a line from the Lord’s Prayer that she thought deeply about: “For thine [emphasis added] is the kingdom.” My friend explained that this line meant that only good could go on in this kingdom, because God is good, and that under God’s government, her needs would be met, because divine Love cares for all of its children.
After praying this way, my friend received a letter from an organization that she was contracted to do work for. Expecting that the letter would have more details about the work to come, for which she would be paid later, she opened the letter to find that the project was being canceled altogether!
She had been praying about supply, affirming and understanding that divine Love would meet every genuine need. The money from the job had been seen as an answer to an unexpected bill that had come, but this letter seemed to close the door on that solution. As she proceeded to read the rest of the letter, though, she realized that the organization appreciated the work that she had already done and wanted to provide compensation for it. The envelope included a check that was enough to pay her bill and have some money left over.
This wasn’t manna in the wilderness, but receiving money under the circumstances was unexpected. And even though the check was not large, it met the need. This experience proved to be a turning point financially. Things have remained financially stable for her ever since.
What I’ve learned from the teachings of Christian Science is that each time someone proves, even in a modest way, that divine Love meets every human need, a little more light is shone on the divine reality of God’s love for all of us. This light can open up unexpected solutions even in the midst of what seem like intractable problems. Every time this law of God’s goodness is tested and proved, there is more evidence that this law can also bless the larger economy and prove God’s care for all of His children.