A superpower we all truly have

Today’s article explores the idea of God as the infinite Mind that sends us inspiration and ideas even when we’re feeling stuck.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
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Our family loves comics. My husband has hundreds of issues of “Thor,” “Spider-Man,” and “The Fantastic Four.” He often regales us with stories of The Hulk, Dr. Strange, and Superman.

Because of this, many of our dinnertime conversations revolve around our most desired superpower. Would we rather be super strong or intelligent? Fly or be invisible? Or how about being able to burst into flames like the Human Torch or stretch like Reed Richards?

Answers vary depending on the mood or what happened that day at school. But the desire for super intelligence is pretty consistent.

Of course, comic books are not all that we read! We also do serious reading. And recently a statement on intelligence that I read in a favorite book – “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” by Mary Baker Eddy – got me thinking. It says: “Intelligence is omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence” (p. 469). “Omni” is Latin for “all,” so I thought about intelligence as unending, always present, and supremely powerful.

“Wow ... intelligence really is a superpower!” I thought. Not in the sense of being miraculous or limited to just one or two large-brained people. What really caught my attention was the idea that intelligence is an unlimited source readily available to all of us, right now.

Science and Health uses several synonyms to describe God, one of which is Mind. Therefore, God Himself is intelligence. If God is Mind, and we are His image (see Genesis 1:26, 27), or spiritual expression, then it’s our very nature to reflect the intelligence of the one divine Mind.

Why is this such a big deal? Think of all the wonderful ideas it assures us we have at our disposal! An infinite source of inspiration has all that could possibly be needed to get us through whatever is being asked of us. We just need to be open to that divine inspiration, divine intelligence.

During my junior year in college, I was in danger of flunking one of my civil engineering classes. After failing the midterm, I asked the professor about dropping the course, but he wouldn’t let me, saying that if I did well on my final, I would be okay.

Easy for him to say! As the final approached, I got more and more concerned. I was studying hard but just wasn’t getting the material. Finally, I shut my books and went for a walk around campus.

It was early morning, and few people were awake. It was a great time to commune with God, which has always been a regular practice of mine – especially when I feel stuck.

I wanted a deeper, more spiritual perspective of the situation, so I asked God what I needed to know. Not about fluid mechanics, but about God’s universe and my place in it.

I remembered a line in the Bible that says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). I realized that everyone has the same Mind because it is the one true Mind, God. It was through Mind that Jesus was able to heal and help so many: He was listening to the divine intelligence that reveals the spiritual fact of God’s goodness and care, in any situation.

That morning I caught a glimpse of what it means that there is only one true Mind, which we all inherently reflect. It was not me, or the professor, but God alone that had the intelligence that was needed. He is the Mind – with a capital “M” – that knows, creates, and governs all its spiritual creation. I realized that the divine Mind is always there to guide us, direct us, and supply us with the ideas needed to help others as well as ourselves.

I went to the test confident. My focus was no longer about my grade specifically. Rather, I had a deep desire to glorify God and see evidence of Mind’s presence – not only for me, but for my classmates and professor, too. Everyone is capable of discerning God’s inspiration, after all!

A few days later, grades for the course were posted. Apparently, I did all right on the exam. I received an “A”!

Intelligence is a superpower – God’s real, tangible power – that is there for all of us to express. We only need to be humble enough to yield to it.

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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.

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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.

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