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Undaunted courage

Inspired by the courage of those fighting the raging wildfires in California and elsewhere, today’s contributor considers how even a glimpse of the power of divine Love arms us with a strength not our own, even when things seem hopeless.

As I sit in the comfort of my home, watching on television the incredible scenes of horrific wildfires in California and elsewhere, engulfing hundreds of thousands of acres of forest along with people’s homes and everything else in their path, a feeling of hopelessness knocks at the door. I’m tempted to think, “There’s nothing anyone can do; these fires are uncontrollable, and nothing will stop the devastation.”

And yet, there are those who are risking their lives to do exactly that – to control the uncontrollable and stop the devastation in its tracks, no matter what it takes. When it all looks so hopeless, what keeps these amazing firefighters and first responders going?

I believe the answer, at least in part, is undaunted courage, a courage that recognizes no destructive force should ever go unchallenged. There is within each of us an ability to recognize that there is a force for good, a power that is ever present and able to extinguish every claim that destruction is inevitable.

Christian Science teaches us that this power is God, divine Love. It teaches us that divine Love is all-powerful, ever present, and ever at work, touching and animating our hearts and minds, causing us to want to be and do good. When we begin to get even the smallest glimpse of this wonderful truth, we are armed with a strength not our own and a courage to use this strength to defeat every destructive force, no matter how daunting it appears to be.

The prophet Isaiah must have had such a glimpse when he wrote these profoundly comforting words to his people as they faced what looked like hopeless conditions: “When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee” (Isaiah 43:2). Surely this is the nature of undaunted courage.

This article also aired on the Aug. 13, 2018, Christian Science Daily Lift podcast.

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