A hidden stream reveals a healing message

When her hands seized up and wouldn’t open, today’s contributor found peace and healing as she considered the idea that even when circumstances suggest otherwise, our God-given health cannot be altered.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
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I was walking the dogs in the woods one day this winter when I heard the most beautiful sound: the bubbling and gurgling of running water nearby. I looked around to locate the source, but there was no water to be seen!

I realized I was walking on top of a stream, yet there was no visible evidence of its existence. I stood transfixed, listening and enjoying the sun sparkling on the fresh snow that covered this little gem, hiding it from sight.

For me, there was something magical and exciting about my discovery. I felt I had stumbled upon some secret watery passageway discernible only to someone who was listening.

I saw a parallel here to what I’ve learned in Christian Science about one’s true nature and identity. As the children, or spiritual offspring, of God, we express His qualities. Our God-given health, goodness, beauty, are unassailable. Yet sometimes they seem covered up – by sickness, deformity, or some other inharmony. As with that stream, sometimes we need a “spring thaw,” a fresh way of looking at things, to help us see what is always there!

This brought to mind a beautiful healing I had a few years ago after my hands began to seize up one evening. They curled into a fist, and I could not unravel them.

Neither my husband nor I had ever experienced anything like that before. But rather than feeling alarmed, I immediately began thanking God for His constant care.

That may sound a bit strange, but I have always turned to God for help no matter what the situation, and answers have come. The Bible promises, “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer” (Psalms 18:2). And not just one time, but all the time.

As one of my church’s two elected Readers at the time, I was responsible for reading part of the Christian Science Bible Lesson during the Sunday service the following morning. I would need to use my hands to read the Lesson-Sermon, which consisted of various passages from the Bible and the textbook of Christian Science, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” by Mary Baker Eddy.

Still, I did not feel pressed or panicked. I was encouraged by a passage in the Bible that tells us our “life is hid with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3). To me, this meant that no matter what my body was telling me, true life and health are spiritual and can never be altered, deformed, or compromised. They remain perfect, intact, and whole, maintained by our Father-Mother God, who created all of us in His spiritual image.

Through Christ, God’s message of love and care, as seen in the healing love expressed by Christ Jesus, we are able to discern this reality and experience it in our lives. Science and Health explains: “All reality is in God and His creation, harmonious and eternal. That which He creates is good, and He makes all that is made. Therefore the only reality of sin, sickness, or death is the awful fact that unrealities seem real to human, erring belief, until God strips off their disguise” (p. 472).

To me, this was similar to my unseen stream. My eyes were telling me one thing, but my spiritual intuition was speaking to me about a very different reality right at hand: God’s reality. Which was I going to believe? I refused to accept a limited, mortal version as the “real me” and chose God’s reality.

I slept well that night, but when I woke, I still could not open my hands. My husband lovingly helped me get ready for church.

I continued to give God thanks for His loving care, and I mentally reached out to hear that stream under the snow – the renewing flow of divine inspiration filled with goodness, joy, freedom, and peace that God constantly sends us.

I was able to fulfill my role as Reader that morning, and by the time the service was over, my hands were completely free. I could use them normally and have continued to do so in the years since.

Our real life, health, prosperity, cannot be altered or misshaped by matter. Everyone’s true, perfect, spiritual self is always “hid with Christ in God” – perhaps hidden from the physical senses but seen in the spring of spiritual understanding that brings comfort and healing.

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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.