A Lesson from the Forest Reserve

In the recent days of stress and anxiety the attention of the Christian Scientist and in fact of every Christian was called again and again to the thought of protection,—protection in battle, on the seas, in the air, and even in the quiet fastnesses of the home, protection from the various phases of evil, which at times have seemed almost overwhelming. Never before has humanity been so awake to the need of something higher, outside and above itself, to appeal to for safety and comfort. To the lay mind this sur turning has been surprising and a bit disconcerting, and a great struggle to meet this desire is going on, but the Christian Scientist knows it is a marvelous spiritual awakening, which, if rightly directed, can revolutionize the thought of the whole world.

Although during the conflict I had no near relatives serving in the battle zone, from the first the mental side of the struggle claimed attention. I knew it was my duty constantly to work and pray for the protection and victory of those serving, and I am particularly grateful for an experience through which I passed shortly after the United States entered the war, and which, helping me to know how lovingly God stands ready to protect and save from any trouble which may assail, gave my work for others a surer foundation.

A trip in a small automobile had been planned and was being carried out. The party consisted of two, my husband and myself. We had had several adventures and had overcome minor difficulties. One day it was found necessary to make a very long detour in order to reach a certain city included in our itinerary. This detour led five thousand feet up into the mountains and across one of the large Government forest reserves, without so much as a postal station or a farmhouse the whole of the way, a distance of over one hundred miles. No apprehension was felt, however. The weather was perfect, and after a thorough examination of the car an early start was made. In a short time the last post office was left behind, and the road began to wind up and up into the mountains. When at last the top of the mountain was reached, the road had become a mere wagon track, leading through great pine forests. We enjoyed to the utmost the wonderful views. Dry needles cracked under our tires, the air was like incense, and the sky a beautiful blue bowl. We knew that there were wild animals all about us, but we were not disturbed, the car was making fair progress, and I remember as we rolled along I was humming to myself a song from our Hymnal, "He that has God his guardian made."

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September 20, 1919

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