About 10 years ago, a swine flu or H1N1 outbreak was all over the news. One day, I wasn’t feeling great all of a sudden. As a student, I was required to be tested for this illness because of the nature of the symptoms I was experiencing. The test came back positive for swine flu.
I followed the protocol I was given, staying by myself for a while. During this time alone, I realized I had a choice: I could mentally freak out, or I could pray about this. I’d experienced before how helpful, calming, and healing it can be to turn to God, so I chose the latter.
This was not about positive thinking or willful prayer. It was a humble listening, a desire to understand and accept what I had been learning in Christian Science about the nature of God as all good. In light of that, I understood that God created each one of us, His children, as the very expression of divine goodness.
That goodness cannot be taken away, and no evil can influence God’s spiritual offspring, because God is All, the only legitimate cause or power. The Bible says, “God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31) and “Whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it” (Ecclesiastes 3:14).
The whole concept that God created all and made everything unchangeably good can feel challenging to accept in times of tribulation. But the Bible also has these words of encouragement from Christ Jesus: “The kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17).
This points to the idea that there is good going on right now, at every moment. There’s value in letting that spiritual good magnify in our thought, instead of focusing only on the bad things we are fearing. As God’s creation, we are made free from fear. When frightening situations present themselves, we can affirm this to be true about ourselves and let God’s healing love bring us the comfort and peace of yielding to what is spiritually true.
That was the gist of my prayers, and I felt that divine peace and comfort firsthand, lifting my fear. The symptoms disappeared more quickly than was usually expected and did not return.
When illness seems prevalent, we can often find ourselves caught up in “what ifs.” Affirming the spiritual facts about everyone’s true identity as God’s forever safe, spiritual child is helpful. This truth applied in prayer has wonderful benefits; it can assuage fear, protect, and heal. That’s what I experienced: Quiet, prayerful listening for God’s inspiration removed the fear and mental disturbance. I found I could be calm in tribulation, and experience healing, too.
We don’t have to go through a scary situation to know our safety in God. But whatever the circumstance, we all can turn to God and feel this freedom. God is here for us, today and every day.
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