“What is gratitude but a powerful camera obscura, ”wrote Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, in her book The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany . The full quotation reads, “What is gratitude but a powerful camera obscura, a thing focusing light where love, memory, and all within the human heart is present to manifest light” ( p.
I was not looking for a new religion. But I was looking for Truth.
The incredible had happened! My GI husband had survived the war, and after six years of living through World War II in England, I was finally with him in America. We had two lovely little girls and were living in a home we shared with my husband’s parents and grandparents in a safe and peaceful community, when suddenly the peace and security were snatched away at a family gathering when I was told we were on the verge of war again (the Korean War).
When I was a child, the thought came to me that “God is a God of love only” and not a God of both love and hate, which was taught by my father’s religion—something I could not accept. This new view of God came during a time when my mother was beginning to study Christian Science.
While taking time during the day for prayer and spiritual study, I have found myself reflecting on the many ways in which my thought was prepared for Christian Science. One of the many memories that comes back to me is of being in graduate school several decades ago.
I began drinking as a preteen. By the time I was a young man in the late ’60s and early ’70s, I was a functional alcoholic with the added vice of narcotics.
At age twenty-seven, I was going nowhere fast. I had no job, no close family, and no discernible path forward.
About four years ago, prior to becoming a student of Christian Science, I began to experience crippling headaches. One February night, due to the inclement weather, I had to stay overnight at the yoga center where I was working.
In the early 1970s I was living in London and trying to fill a sense of emptiness with food, but the problem had nothing to do with physical hunger. Back then, I didn’t recognize the hunger for what it was—a spiritual yearning to feel God’s control and presence in my life.
I’ve always sought a deeper spiritual purpose in my life. I grew up attending a church of another denomination, where I liked the hymns and the beautiful stained-glass windows.