A spiritual path out of uncertainty

Desperate and afraid in the face of sudden financial uncertainty, a woman prayed. Learning more about the nature of God as Love itself lifted her fear – and soon she experienced God’s loving care in tangible ways.

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Perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of the coronavirus pandemic is the many questions it raises, both for today and for the future. How will it impact people we love? How will we manage financially? Will life ever be the same? The uncertainty of the present – as well as the future – makes answers elusive.

An ongoing series in The Christian Science Monitor focuses on “navigating uncertainty,” exploring topics ranging from economic change, technological change, and climate change to the future of democratic governance and human rights. The series brings out that one way of navigating uncertainty is for individuals and groups around the world to step up to shape their future and chart a path toward progress. Another way I’ve found is through a faith that grows into spiritual understanding.

At a time of great and completely unforeseen financial uncertainty in my life, I found myself seriously questioning whether I’d be able to keep my house. I felt unmoored and afraid. I had no idea what the future held, and at first, the idea that I would ever feel secure again seemed unfathomable.

In those moments of desperation, I prayed. Through many years of reading the Bible and “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” by Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, I had learned that God is ever present and good, always there for us in times of need. And I had experienced this on many occasions before. So in that moment of extreme need, I asked God for help.

Help came through a simple but powerful idea that carried me through this difficult period. It was a statement in Science and Health: “Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need” (p. 494). This was so comforting, since the future felt like something I couldn’t even begin to navigate, much less figure out. Here was the promise that Love, another name for God, would meet my needs. But how?

As I prayed, it was very helpful to consider what God as Love does. Divine Love nurtures; Love supplies; Love restores. And because God, who is Love, is truly ever present, there can be no place where divine Love is not actively loving. And this loving nature of God defines each one of us. As God’s children, we are actually the spiritual reflection of the Divine – the very expression of God’s endless love.

My thought became so filled with a sense of the bigness, the wonderfulness, and the all-embracing nature of divine Love, that it felt completely natural to trust it. And my fear about the future gradually dissipated.

As the days and weeks went by, it was amazing how my every need was met. For every challenge, there was a solution. Often it came step by step, but at every turn, I could see evidence of God’s care, and I was able to keep my home. Above all, I continue to be content in life, which feels really blessed and satisfying. This is something I never would have imagined possible without prayer.

Divine Love is present now, giving us strength during this difficult and uncertain period. We can understandingly trust in Love’s power to take care of all of us, because Love is an actual law, which is operating universally. The forever near and dear presence of divine Love assures each one of us of the promise of good going forward.

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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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