‘One infinite God, good,’ transcending borders
There’s no situation or place in the world that is beyond the guiding, healing, unifying, hope-bringing reach of divine Love, which knows no borders.
Separated for decades, my mother’s family members lived on opposite sides of the Berlin Wall. They cared deeply for one another and in 1991 finally met in person again. When at last she could talk with her sisters face to face, my mother told them that she’d always had them in her prayers. “We could feel the prayers!” they said through their tears of joy.
Such heartfelt experiences tangibly illustrate the connections we each continually have through God. Toward the middle of Mary Baker Eddy’s transformative work, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” she makes this insightful observation:
“One infinite God, good, unifies men and nations; constitutes the brotherhood of man; ends wars; fulfils the Scripture, ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself;’ annihilates pagan and Christian idolatry, – whatever is wrong in social, civil, criminal, political, and religious codes; equalizes the sexes; annuls the curse on man, and leaves nothing that can sin, suffer, be punished or destroyed” (p. 340).
That encouraging, stirring statement certainly points to God’s power to solve, correct, and cure. Just as the effect of prayers could be felt on both sides of the barbed-wire-topped, heavily guarded, reinforced concrete that once split Germany, God’s healing power can transcend any boundary, national or otherwise, regardless of the circumstances. God, whom the Bible reveals as ever-present Love and Spirit, exists fully and actively everywhere.
This was proven to me dramatically when, during the Cold War, I inadvertently boarded a train that took me into a Communist country that at the time was closed off from much of the world. When it was discovered who I was, soldiers came to my seat and confiscated my passport. It was clear that they felt animosity toward and serious mistrust of me. They told me to stay seated and then surrounded me.
It kind of felt as though I were in a movie. The barrier of mistrust between us felt very tall. I didn’t have much time to be afraid, though, because I was praying so hard. I was inspired by the realization that all of us on that train shared the same Parent, God. And as the train moved through the plains and mountains, I found I could feel God’s presence wherever we went. And soon, that harsh barrier fell.
On a map, I showed one of the officers where I was trying to go. He smiled – actually, he laughed – and through gestures conveyed to me he hoped to go there himself someday. With another soldier’s help, I got my passport back, found my way to the border, and made it to my destination.
In a small way, but momentous to me, “one infinite God, good” unified a handful of people who’d earlier regarded one another as enemies. This experience illustrating the power of prayer wherever we may be has been a highlight of my life.
We may not often think of people who are on the other side of some border. We know that they exist, certainly, but perhaps they seem faceless and impersonal to us. To God, though, they are anything but faceless. Each one of us everywhere is, without measure, cherished by God, who created us as the very image, or spiritual reflection, of Himself. As such, we are treasured specifically and thoroughly, as Jesus taught.
Even though we may never interact face to face with most of the people across the world’s borders, there’s still value in embracing them in our prayers. God’s love and power transcend all boundaries – God knows no boundaries – and prayer impelled by divine Love is tangibly felt, as my mother’s family members proved and as I experienced on that train.
It’s invigorating to be receptive to the Love that is God, revealing to us what really and fully permeates all of God’s spiritual creation. While it can appear that the globe is stained with selfishness and animosity, the goodness of divine Love actually delineates and defines the true spiritual nature of us all. Affirming these spiritual facts effectively defends us against mistrust and fear and thereby brings greater unity and healing into our experience.
The Bible explains, “The kingdom is the Lord’s: and he is the governor among the nations” (Psalms 22:28). That the “one infinite God, good,” is the ever-present, unchallengeable authority of the universe means that God’s hope-bringing, guiding, healing goodness and love are powerful enough to transcend any border.