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Shut the door on pain
It was a perfect spring day. The air was cool and fresh, but the bright sun was warm. As I walked to the bus stop, though, something wasn’t quite right: I noticed pain and soreness in my legs.
My first thought about the pain might sound a little surprising: It was that the pain couldn’t be true, couldn’t be part of me. That might sound like denying a problem, but I wasn’t kidding myself. I knew I didn’t have to be in pain, because in the Christian Science Sunday School I’ve learned that I am God’s child, perfect, spiritual, and totally cared for, and that means I am always safe—free from pain.
I knew I could keep praying with these ideas and find healing, but every time I tried to pray, I would get interrupted by my friends or normal school activities. I decided to deal specifically with the issue later, but as I went through my day of math, Spanish, science, and art, I tried to hold firmly to the fact that God could not make this pain, as He is only good. Since the pain didn’t come from God, who is all-power, it couldn’t have any power.
I knew I didn’t have to be in pain.
That afternoon I got on the bus, and during the ten-minute ride home, I started praying for myself very specifically. One idea that helped me was from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy: “Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need” (p. 494). I needed to be able to concentrate in school without being distracted by something like pain and to walk freely.
I got off the bus and started walking up the street. As I neared my house, I thought about something we’d talked about in Sunday School—that God knows our needs and supplies them even before we ask. I also thought about the idea of opening the “door” of my thoughts only to good thoughts, not to evil. I realized that since God had already given me everything I could ever need, the only thing that could be knocking to intrude on that good would be the opposite of good, or evil, and there was zero need for me to open that door.
At this point, I had reached my house and was standing at my front door. I decided to apply my prayers to what I was about to do next. I dismissed the pain, which I knew was not part of me, opened the door, walked in, and shut the door behind me—shutting the door both literally and figuratively. I was free from pain at that moment and have been fine ever since.
I learned from this healing that giving prayer my full focus helps me “shut the door” on a problem much more quickly.
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Photograph by Cliff Leeker