MUCH has been said and written on the subject of gratitude; yet there remain many angles from which the subject may be considered with profit. Few are willing to admit they are ungrateful; but as we come to have a better understanding of what comprises real Christian gratitude, is it not true that much we had reckoned as gratitude may have been but forms of selfishness? To illustrate: children usually are grateful, sometimes inexpressibly so, for toys and other nice things they receive from their parents. But do they not often become so interested and occupied with the pleasure these afford that they forget their daily round of duties, and are sometimes not a little peevish when reminded of the fact? As we are all but "children of a larger growth," is it difficult to see the correspondence between their experience and ours?

Let us suppose that the thing we believe we are most greatful for is physical healing. Like Job, we might have said, "Wearisome nights are appointed to me." Days had passed into weeks, and weeks into months; and although we may not have expressed Job's words, we at least echoed his thought when he said: "Even to day is my complaint bitter: my stroke is heavier than my groaning. Oh that I knew where I might find him!... I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments." Then, in our extremity, Christian Science was thrown out as the life line; and it rescued us. What inexpressible joy! A new world! But what was the reason for this new-found joy! A new world! But what was the reason for this new-found joy? Was it that we had obtained the "pearl of great price;" that we had learned to know more about God? Or was it the physical ease and comfort we had gained?

Physical healing is not the whole aim of Christian science. Physical healing does not in itself make one a Christian Scientist; just as the solving of a problem in arithmetic by a pupil at school does not make that pupil a mathematician. Did all those whom Jesus healed thereby become Christians? It is not so recorded. Mrs. Eddy writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 569) : "Alas for those who break faith with divine Science and fail to strangle the serpent of sin as well as of sickness! They are dwellers still in the deep darkness of belief. They are in the surging sea of error, not struggling to lift their heads above the drowning wave. What must the end be? They must eventually expiate their sin through suffering."

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The Challenge
February 2, 1924

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