Prayer and the environment

Step by step you can prove that prayer is pivotal
to meeting environmental challenges.

When I first heard about the oil tanker Braer caught in the rocks along a coast of the Shetland Islands, a sense of acute distress overcame me. It was reported that its cargo of twenty-five million gallons of crude oil was beginning to leak out of the ship, and the rough seas caused by hurricane-force winds were making it impossible to tow the ship off the rocks.

It certainly appeared that there was nothing I could do personally to be of help in this agonizing situation. Then the thought came that I could pray. I opened the textbook of Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, to the chapter titled "Glossary." There I found the word oil and its spiritual meaning: "Consecration; charity; gentleness; prayer; heavenly inspiration." This spiritual concept of oil was totally different from a physically destructive substance leaking from a tanker, and it helped to disarm my fear of matter's supposed destructive force.

The qualities associated with oil in its spiritual signification cannot possibly harm our environment but must instead be a blessing to it. Such qualities express the real substance of God's creation, and, in truth, there is no destructive substance that can annihilate or even harm what He creates. The King James Version of the Bible explains in Genesis: "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." God did not make anything destructive. To understand clearly this spiritual fact has a purifying effect on everything we experience, and it enables us, through prayer, to contribute toward the resolution of challenges even in remote areas of the world.

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No nuclear midnight in God's care
April 19, 1993

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