Uses of Adversity

Why is discord? we have often asked ourselves in extremity. Why could not all suffering have been left out of mortal existence and life made a path of roses? Answers to this question are available in abundance in the Bible, and in Mrs. Eddy's writings as well. "We need 'Christ, and him crucified,' " she tells us. "We must have trials and self-denials, as well as joys and victories, until all error is destroyed." "Better the suffering which awakens mortal mind from its fleshly dream, than the false pleasures which tend to perpetuate this dream" (Science and Health, pp. 39, 196).

Causation, we learn, is in Mind, not in matter. All discord, to mortal sense a reality, originates in mortal mind, so our efforts toward eradicating discord should deal with this mental cause, not with material effects, whether the condition be physical suffering, sin, sorrow, or financial lack. If we could destroy pain with drugs; if we could overcome poverty merely by getting money; if we could find balm for grief in material pleasures; if we could atone for sin by doing penance,—by none of these processes could we experience healing. The cause of the discord being mental, the remedy must be Mind, the healing being accomplished only through a reformation in consciousness.

The purpose of healing should be, not merely to restore physical ease by banishing pain, not merely to meet financial need by getting money, or to forget grief in pleasure-seeking, but rather to correct the mental state which has permitted these errors to seem real; and when this has been done the healing will be accomplished and the discords will vanish. If one has no other desire in seeking healing than to restore bodily comfort, he would be more consistent to employ material remedies than to seek ease of body through mental processes. The constant aim should be to purify thought, to reflect more of God.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.