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There's a kind of joy that just won't quit. It's stronger than the most devastating of mortal sorrows. Stronger than family turbulence, political oppression, financial disaster, sickness, or even death. People who have this kind of joy can look even tragic circumstances in the face and say, "I believe there's something vastly more real and more powerful than all of this. And that something is God."
A Christian Science practitioner I know caught her first vision of this kind of joy when she was praying for a very unhappy teenager (let's call him George) a few years ago. George had been fighting a lot with his parents. He felt they were unreasonable and out of touch with "the real world." Besides that, they'd taken his car away from him as a disciplinary measure, even though he had paid for it himself. Worst of all, he'd been waking up in the middle of the night with chest pains and other sensations that really scared him. So he decided it was time to pray—and to ask a practitioner to pray along with him.
At first, frankly, the practitioner wasn't sure where to begin in praying for him. It seemed so many things were going wrong. So she prayed for a few minutes about how to pray. Suddenly, she felt sure that her Father-Mother God had already given her the spiritual understanding to meet the demands of this situation—or George would never have felt impelled to ask her to help. Then she opened Mrs. Eddy's book Miscellaneous Writings to the page she'd been reading when George called her. Here's what she found: "Joy is self-sustained; goodness and blessedness are one: suffering is self-inflicted, and good is the master of evil" (p. 209).
from the Editors
Joyce K. Marin
The Christmas gift
M. Rosalind Twinn
The unselfishness of praying for yourself
FROM HAND TO HAND
N. W. M.
Prayer that heals
Richard Amand Hogrefe
Is there really enough for everybody?
The unfailing care of God
Richard C. Bergenheim
Mary Metzner Trammell
In the fall of 1979 my husband was involved in a serious car...
Linda M. Newgent with contributions from Philip L. Newgent
God has protected and cared for me all my life, but I didn't...
Dorothy L. Stockton
Our family had a healing recently involving our two young...
Anne E. Dixon with contributions from Todd Dixon
When one's only child leaves this earth, it is not easy to accept...
Melvina S. Keeler
with contributions from Michael D. Kreiter