"He departed from him for a season"

The reservation "for a season" is of metaphysical importance to the student in Christian Science. When first entering the study of this Science, the pouring forth of the truth to the unenlightened mind often brings the light so suddenly and clearly that instantaneous healing has resulted, and the student in this new stage of uplifted consciousness expects the same results all along the line of his endeavors. Then sometimes comes the surprise and seeming disappointment if other errors do not yield with the same rapidity; he has now to learn to prove his demonstration through spiritual understanding. In this testing time doubts and uncertainties may assail him and he may even question whether his first healing was demonstration or accident. It is only the lack of spiritual understanding which makes possible the misgivings and the questionings as to why such results as his first healing are not always repeated.

Mrs. Eddy says in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 28), "The trials encountered by prophet, disciple, and apostle, 'of whom the world was not worthy,' await, in some form, every pioneer of truth." Paul writes that Jesus "was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." "Yet without sin"—if the sinless Jesus was tempted, and often tempted, can we, the "lesser apostles of Truth" (Science and Health, p. 40), expect to escape his experiences? How many times he was tempted we know not, but if the devil left him "for a season" we know that evil suggestions must have appeared again in other forms of temptation—perhaps through the crowd which was always present in his healing ministry. We can easily picture this crowd, many among the number always on the alert to put a stumblingblock in the way of Truth, saying, for instance: "Here comes a blind man, a man blind from his birth. Surely he will not be made to see." Jesus, who so clearly "saw" every thought around him, must have seen this one; and may this not have been a form of temptation which he again gloriously overcome? And so through all his work we know the temptations must have still returned until the hour came when he could say, "The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me."

Thus if we accept Jesus as the Way-shower, it must be without reservation and in every experience in life, and so we have to "glory in tribulations" by turning them into opportunities to follow the Way-shower, grateful that we, too, may be classed as followers of Truth. We have only to be honest and sincere in our desire to follow, and we shall be helped by the angels of His care, directing and encouraging us as we remember Jesus' words, "Be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." Can there be greater encouragement than that so beautifully expressed by Mrs. Eddy in "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany" on page 149, "Remember, thou canst be brought into no condition, be it ever so severe, where Love has not been before thee and where its tender lesson is not awaiting thee"? When our trials seem severe, we have to learn how to lean at all times and in all conditions upon divine Principle. The human mind with its finite sense of reasoning, constantly suggests, "So far and no farther;" that some problems are too great, some too unimportant to gain the help of Principle. It is the human concept of God which would limit the power of God in big things and deny its availability in lesser things. This is a common form of temptation and has to be recognized and destroyed by knowledge of divine omnipresence.

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Proving God
November 22, 1919

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