Those ignorant of the teachings of Christian Science are frequently misled into scoffing at what they may term the Scientist's times of meditation, ridiculing him and making crude jokes at his expense. Such persons would feel highly incensed were it said of them that they were speaking lightly of prayer and of the Biblical injunction, "But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly." Yet this is precisely what any one does who indulges in light remarks about the Christian Science method of worship. Furthermore, all professing Christians would maintain that they believe the many Scriptural promises that God will answer prayer. The proof of the correctness or genuineness of a thing is, however, found in the testing of it. A problem in mathematics is known to be correctly solved when it is proved. So, the true Christian Scientist prays in secret,—withdraws himself from the busy hum of human affairs, and in silent communion with the one God strives to come into a more perfect understanding of divine law, in order that he may prove his faith by his works. The demonstration of the healing power of divine Love through the understanding of Christian Science, is so widespread to-day that scarcely a place can be found where its testimonies are not heard.

No member of any religious denomination will admit that he does not value in his own experience a period—even though it be only occasionally employed by him—in which he enters into sacred communion with his God; and he will confess that a more frequent and constant practice of such worship would benefit him. A certain practice in a girls' school showed the general acceptance of the fact that a quiet hour is needed periodically by every person—an hour in which one can "find himself," can draw apart from the pressing duties of everyday life to take account of himself and his relation to people and things. This college was not a denominational institution, and its observance of an hour for meditation was based solely upon the idea that one must regularly pause and think for himself. The hour in question was maintained on Sunday afternoon, and had its origin in the effort of the organization of the Young Women's Christian Association of the college to provide for the students a higher moral and spiritual standard of living. No girl was permitted to visit another's room during this hour, or to absent herself from her own. She was free to use this time as she chose,—to read, to write letters, or to sleep,—but she must maintain a quiet hour. Such observances are not infrequent in our school and college dormitories.

Not only does the Christian Scientist take periods of each day for this secret and silent prayer to God, but he maintains a constant effort to meditate upon the things of God, even while about his regular duties, to do everything his hands find to do as unto God, and to render all service with praise and thanksgiving. In so doing, healing is wrought for him in all that was before a burden or even, perhaps, offensive; his service becomes more valuable, and his healing thought blesses all upon whom it rests. Mrs. Eddy says in an article entitled "Improve Your Time" in "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 230): "All successful individuals have become such by hard work; by improving moments before they pass into hours, and hours that other people may occupy in the pursuit of pleasure. They spend no time in sheer idleness, in talking when they have nothing to say." Earlier in the same article she says, "If one would be successful in the future, let him make the most of the present."

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September 30, 1922

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