Everlasting home insurance
I knew I could trust God to fully restore my home.
It was a warm, humid day in early August five years ago; several heavy thunderstorms had already rolled through the area where I live, and more were expected. I live less than two miles from Lake Michigan, and it is not unusual for strong winds and storms to sweep across the lake often over the course of the year. This particular afternoon, one storm picked up tremendous speed and force, and it hit the Michigan coastline with straight-line winds estimated at ninety to a hundred miles an hour. My town was directly in its path.
Thousands of trees were blown over, and power lines went down in a tangled mess, leaving roads impassable and hundreds of homes without power. Six trees had fallen on my roof, and dozens more on my property. I will be forever grateful that my adult children, who were visiting at the time, and I were unharmed. In fact, we all immediately turned to God in prayer, acknowledging His presence, protection, and authority and listening for direction as to where we should begin the cleanup.
Each one of us is always at home—and forever insured—in the arms of our Father-Mother God.
Our prayers included gratitude for the many friends who arrived over the next few days, having walked under, over, and around more than a mile of downed trees to reach my home. They brought chain saws, fuel, water, food, and most important, love. I felt I was witnessing what it means to “love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:39). Everyone came at the right time with the right knowledge and equipment to be of service, as if orchestrated by the divine intelligence I believed was moving them to care for us in this way.
I was serving as First Reader in my local branch Church of Christ, Scientist, and a week after the storm, we were able to reopen for a Sunday service. It was a precious hour. One of the hymns we sang that Sunday was especially appropriate. The second verse says:
What though my human comforts die,
The Lord my Savior liveth;
What though the darkness gather round,
Songs in the night God giveth.
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that Rock I’m clinging;
Since Love is God of heaven and earth,
How can I keep from singing?
(Pauline T., adapted, Christian Science Hymnal, No. 533 , © CSBD)
These words were meaningful to me as I looked ahead to all that was still to be accomplished, which included working with the insurance company. I’d heard stories of bad experiences people have had with insurance claims, so I knew that as I approached this process, I needed to continue praying. I decided to stay on “that Rock,” God, and keep singing, refusing to let the enormity of the task or the challenge of paying for it overwhelm me.
I also resolved to understand more clearly what insurance really is. I looked up the word insure and found that it means “to make sure, certain, or secure” (The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language) and “to guarantee against loss or harm” (dictionary.com). Through my study and practice of Christian Science, I’ve learned that my security and my protection from loss and harm have their source in God. So, my true insurance is from God.
My prayers also took me to the Bible, where I found so many references to what I saw as the first “insurance plan”—the covenant of provision and security God made with His children from the beginning. For example, God promises Noah and his sons after their time in the ark during the flood, “I establish my covenant with you and with your seed after you” (Genesis 9:9). And God promises Abraham: “I will set up my covenant with you and your descendants after you in every generation as an enduring covenant. I will be your God and your descendants’ God after you” (Genesis 17:7, Common English Bible). These assurances of God’s everlasting covenant of love and protection for us, His loved children, recur throughout the Bible.
I also found helpful an idea shared by the builder I worked with. He said the work his crew would do was not about repair but restoration. I loved that idea and knew I could trust God to fully restore my home. My home had always been a place of hospitality to others, and I realized it really wasn’t a structure of wood and windows. It was an expression of divine Love, welcoming and embracing all those who came through its doors. That expression of Love could never be lost.
My interactions with the insurance company were harmonious. Everyone was clear in explaining the process, fair in the compensation for the work, and supportive of the entire restoration project. As it turned out, I was fully compensated even before all of the work was completed.
Within a year, my home and property were fully restored, and today it continues to be a blessing to me and others.
Each one of us is always at home—and forever insured—in the arms of our Father-Mother God, who is divine Love. We can never be cast out or left out of this Love by weather events, economic circumstances, changing family relationships, or anything else. As Mary Baker Eddy reminds us in the beautiful rendition of Psalm 23 in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house [the consciousness] of [love] for ever” (p. 578).