"The chart of life"

Truth is always practical. Only error, human opinions and theories, are misleading and impractical. Christian Science is thoroughly practical because it is true. It is founded upon Principle, upon absolute Truth, and Principle cannot be untrue, mysterious, or misleading. Every sincere student of Christian Science has found that the textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mrs. Eddy, meets human needs because it contains that which satisfies, comforts, and helps. Its truths are revealed in love, and because of that fact it satisfies, because Love does satisfy—it does not deceive, or mislead, or mystify. This explains in part why Christian Scientists love "the little book," read it, ponder over its lessons, rejoice over its possession, and revere its author. A Christian Scientist would as soon expect to go on a journey without his hat as to start out without his textbook, and he considers a day passed without reading it as lacking something essential, whatever the circumstances which interrupt his customary study.

The adaptability of the lessons taught in Science and Health were recently brought very forcibly to a student of Christian Science. Having occasion to visit one of the large cities on the Pacific coast, he secured passage from his home city on one of the river steamboats which makes nightly trips between the two points. On going aboard he met one of the pilots, who was also a student of Christian Science, and after supper the two sat on deck talking of the subject they both loved, while watching the changing panorama of bends and stretches as the boat made its graceful way down the stream. The visitor expressed a keen desire to witness from the pilot house the boat's journey from the point of reaching the bay to the city of its destination. The pilot stated that he would be on duty during the early hours of the next morning, and very kindly invited the traveler to come up and sit with him during the trip across the bay. The invitation was accepted, and the early morning found the two peering out into a fog so dense that one could not see a boat's length ahead. Now and then a buoy appeared off one side or the other; occasionally a light was seen and passed, and at short intervals a horn sounded out into the gloom. The pilot turned his wheel to this side and that, ignoring the seemingly impenetrable mist, and confidently going forward. The passing of the other boats, the bellowing of horns, the ringing of bells, were all accepted smilingly by the pilot, for each meant something to his understanding of boat language.

The visitor stood much interested, as he turned the pages of Science and Health, now and then reading a paragraph aloud and asking questions in turn. "How do you know where you are and which way you are going?" was asked. For answer the man at the wheel turned to a chart at his side and said, "I have it all here." Pointing to lights and buoys, he said, "When I reach one of these, I know as well where I am as you do on the streets at home, and the darkness makes little difference because I know the chart." Then he explained the necessity of the chart and of its careful study, even in some cases through years of apprenticeship. To be successful, he emphasized, one must have a keen desire to be a pilot, and to be watchful at all times; and he ended his interesting explanation by saying, "To be a trustworthy pilot one must study the chart at low tide and in fair weather."

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"I will dwell in the house of the Lord"
August 9, 1919

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