The most powerful starting point

When things go awry, recognizing the power and presence of God, good, opens the door to solutions and healing.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
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It’s so often true that one’s starting point can determine everything else. I’ve found that this applies to prayer, too.

Jesus, in explaining to his students how to pray, started the Lord’s Prayer with “Our Father,” as Him to whom we turn. Then, in the prayer, he further identifies “our Father” as all-powerful. God, good, is in total control of His spiritual creation.

Mary Baker Eddy, a devout follower of Jesus and the discoverer of Christian Science, wrote in “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” “The starting-point of divine Science is that God, Spirit, is All-in-all...” (p. 275). As infinite Spirit, God created us as forever spiritual, pure, and safe, not vulnerable to material circumstances. What a powerful starting point for prayer!

Many years ago, shortly after my father and I had become interested in Christian Science, he had a wonderful healing. He was on the top of Mount Washington in New Hampshire, mid-winter, doing experiments on super-cooled moisture flows. It was time for him to leave, but the weather was bad – two feet of fresh snow. On the way down (on foot), my father’s leg slipped into a deep hole, apparently dislocating his knee.

His first reaction was to panic because of the pain and the thought of not surviving the night where temperatures go way below zero. But then he thought of a different starting point: God – God’s allness, God’s governing presence, God’s protective love. He told me he stayed mentally with that starting point, holding on to a sense of God’s tender caring, knowing it was there to help and heal whatever needed to be healed.

Eventually, while moving his body to try to be more comfortable, he found the knee functioning normally and painlessly. He got up and strode naturally the rest of the way down the mountain.

Making God the starting point of our prayer prevents us from mentally wallowing around in the problem. Instead it starts us off in the right direction – sensing more fully the allness of God, good.

Adapted from the July 21, 2021, Christian Science Daily Lift podcast.

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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.

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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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