It’s one thing to believe that God is always present, but at a moment when a car crash seemed inevitable, today’s contributor had to know it.

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While traveling with a friend, I was driving on a single-lane mountain road that had a sheer drop-off on one side and a wall of stone on the other – no shoulder for pulling over on either side. As we rounded a blind curve, we confronted both a flock of sheep crossing the road and a large truck barreling toward us. With no space to veer out of the way, some kind of collision seemed inevitable.

In my practice of Christian Science, I had already experienced how prayer is a quick aid in emergencies. So my reaction in this situation was a quick and simple prayer: “God!”

That single-word prayer wasn’t a curse or a fearful reaction. Behind it was a vigorous affirmation of the presence and power of God and His care for us all. Christian Science discoverer Mary Baker Eddy, through studying the Bible and proving its practicality through healing, came to a multifaceted understanding of the nature of God as the all-seeing, all-knowing divine Mind that governs us as His spiritual expressions, moving in harmony with each other. And she taught that the honest yearning to better know the reality of what God is and does for His creation enables us to see more of His care in our lives.

Mrs. Eddy’s primary text on Christian Science, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” affirms: “Harmonious action proceeds from Spirit, God.…

“… God’s being is infinity, freedom, harmony, and boundless bliss. ‘Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty’ ” (pp. 480, 481).

Christ Jesus sometimes referred to this spiritual consciousness of liberty as the kingdom of heaven and other times as the kingdom of God, always with us in either case – God’s supreme government present within us all. He explained: “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20, 21).

In that moment on the road I glimpsed something of God’s kingdom; I felt a deep and sudden spiritual awareness of God and of His creation as reflecting, expressing, and experiencing God’s harmony at every moment. This broke through the fear. And as inexplicable as it seemed under the circumstances, I’m grateful to report that there was no crash, and the people and sheep were unharmed.

As God’s precious children, we all have the capacity to experience the kingdom of God here and now – to feel God’s goodness, power, presence, and harmony – in any situation. No emergency is required to propel one there; we can turn to God at any time and experience a better, broader sense of health and harmony. But should we find ourselves in an urgent situation, turning instantly to God with a heartfelt affirmation of His loving care for us all can bring the help and protection we need.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

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