Finding safety, wherever we are
A Christian Science perspective: The infinite goodness of divine Love is never out of range.
While online the other day, I noticed the phrase “danger lurks around every corner” as the headline for many articles and lead-in to websites. Topics covered ranged from climate change concerns to watching out for teen drivers to fear of crime. It’s tempting to feel that danger all around is an increasingly normal way to view life.
But over the years, I’ve found hope and confidence in the idea that we are divinely cared for, as is shown by the healing works of Christ Jesus. Jesus taught that God is ever-present Spirit – wholly good – and that everyone’s right nature is the entirely good, loved, and spiritual child of God. His understanding that divine law alone governs God’s creation enabled Jesus to defuse violent situations, turn people from wrong actions, and even to heal threatening diseases.
Our prayers can affirm the spiritual fact that God has created only good. This helps us see that no form of evil and its attending dangers have divine authority, which is the ultimate authority. Each of us can hear the message of the Christ, God’s all-powerful goodness, inspiring mental poise and fearless thinking, and guiding everyone as needed.
Many times in my own experience, I’ve seen how acknowledging the supremacy of God, good, inspires ideas that enable me to feel and be safe. I draw inspiration from Bible stories of individuals finding protection under trying circumstances. One heartening and instructive experience recounted is of the Apostle Paul, who at this point had become a dedicated follower of Jesus’ teachings. Having been subject to false accusations, he had appealed for a trial in Rome and was on a boat heading there with other prisoners when a fierce storm arose, threatening the lives of everyone (see Acts 27).
But by then Paul had gained an unwavering conviction of God’s guiding light, which had brought him through many dark paths. In this situation, he came forward courageously and said to all the men: “Take courage! None of you will lose your lives, even though the ship will go down. For last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood beside me, and he said, ‘Don’t be afraid, Paul,... God in his goodness has granted safety to everyone sailing with you’ ” (New Living Translation).
There’s a way of thinking about angels that can further enlighten us about this experience. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, wrote, “Angels are pure thoughts from God, winged with Truth and Love ...” and “These angels deliver us from the depths. Truth and Love come nearer in the hour of woe, when strong faith or spiritual strength wrestles and prevails through the understanding of God” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” pp. 298, 567).
Clearly Paul, who had learned to remain keenly alive to directions from God, divine Love, heard the message of Love’s protecting presence right in the midst of this raging storm. Paul’s absolute certainty of the truth of this message led him to encourage others to eat, who hadn’t eaten for days, which comforted and uplifted their spirits. The soldiers on board had intended to kill the prisoners so they wouldn’t escape, but they were stopped from doing so by the commander. Everyone – all 276 on board – made it safely to shore.
No one can be out of range of divine Love’s infinite goodness. The willingness to listen and yield to divine Love’s direction has a healing and protecting impact.