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Back trouble quickly healed
A friend of mine asked me if I would be available to help move a family member to a new location. I told her I would be happy to help, and arrangements were made to rent a moving van. Making several trips from the house to the new location turned into an all-day activity.
The following day I was scheduled to serve as an usher at a Wednesday testimony meeting at my church (a branch of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston). But when I woke up that morning, my back was stiff, and it was difficult to get out of bed. I thought about getting a substitute usher, but ultimately felt that I should be at my scheduled post that evening.
A familiar statement from the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, came to mind: “Whatever it is your duty to do, you can do without harm to yourself” (Mary Baker Eddy, p. 385). In the margin next to this paragraph are the words “Honest toil has no penalty.” I’ve always felt that this truth applies to any activity we’re engaged in. I found, though, that as the day went on, getting up from a seated position was becoming more challenging.
That evening, I arrived at church early and took my seat on the bench in the back, which is where the usher sits in order to see the whole congregation. When someone stands to give a testimony of healing, it’s the usher’s job to bring the testifier a microphone so that everyone can easily hear.
Before the service started, I began to practice getting up from the bench. I would slide off the bench, drop down to one knee, and then stand up from that position. My hope was that no one would see me do this whenever I had to stand during the service.
Suddenly the thought “What are you doing?” came to me. It dawned on me that the way I was approaching this was not in line with my understanding of Christian Science. Instead of rejecting the mistaken belief that I was material and could suffer, I was accommodating it. When we give this error legitimacy in our thought, we see its ill effects manifested on the body.
I sat quietly for a moment. From my study of the Bible and Science and Health I’ve learned that each of us is truly spiritual, the image and likeness of God. And God’s being is “infinity, freedom, harmony, and boundless bliss” (Science and Health, p. 481). So I reasoned that, as God’s image, I reflect infinity, freedom, harmony, and boundless bliss. Also, when we are helping or in service to others, we are being Godlike, and no material so-called law of suffering could keep me from expressing the spirit of Truth and Love demonstrated by Christ Jesus.
The testimony meeting started. As the first testifier stood, so did I, completely free of pain or discomfort. And my freedom has continued. The next week I stood up and testified myself, with overwhelming gratitude for this healing.
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