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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