Prayer and Practice

We often hear the remark from those who are endeavoring to practice Christian Science that they do not have the opportunity for spiritual growth which they feel they need, because they are so much occupied with the material that they have not time for study and meditation upon the things of Spirit. The complaint is very general. In considering this problem, we need to ask, first of all, what constitutes material and what constitutes spiritual work. The answer to this question would seem simple to most people.

Spiritual work, they would say, consists of prayer, meditation, the reading of the Bible and other religious works, attending divine service, and so forth. All these things call for a certain amount of leisure, seclusion, and more or less time, that men may be alone with God and their own thoughts; and they are necessary. In fact, so great has seemed the demand for them that various kinds of institutions where conditions are favorable to these practices have existed for ages. Jesus evidently felt this need when he retired to the Mount of Olives, and spent the night alone with his Maker.

The answer to the query as to what constitutes material labor might be given in various ways. The housewife might reply that it is dish-washing, bed-making, preparing meals for the household, or superintending the various duties of like nature about the home. Those occupied in business would answer in terms of the business world. The day laborer, the mechanic, the clerk,—all would answer differently; but each would offer the same general concept of what constitutes material labor.

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The Helping Hand
February 10, 1923

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