Freed of doubt and Covid-19 symptoms
I was wrestling with some tough questions, including this one: Does Christian Science heal?
I’m a lifelong Christian Scientist and have always loved the simple Bible quote found on the walls of many branch Churches of Christ, Scientist: “God is love” (I John 4:16). But I had been dealing for quite a while with a sense of God seeming far away and of not feeling God’s Father-Mother love and care for me.
At this particular moment, I was experiencing symptoms of Covid-19. Although I had chosen to be vaccinated out of care and respect for my friends and colleagues, I came down with the virus during a well-publicized surge in cases. I had three positive tests over the course of a week. Paying close attention to government requirements for isolation and distancing, I quarantined at home. I also alerted people I’d been in contact with, and I’m grateful to say that none of them came down with the symptoms.
I called a Christian Science practitioner to pray with me when I started experiencing symptoms. I was, and am, so grateful for her prompt response every time I reached out, day or night, and for the steadfastness of her prayers. But the problem, as I perceived it, was that I didn’t seem to be feeling or responding to those prayers, or to her conviction of my true identity as the spiritual reflection of divine Mind, God, free from disease.
I was discouraged, and wondered, in a particularly down moment, if being a Christian Scientist just meant trying to find some glimmer of spiritual comfort while slogging through an illness and waiting for the physical symptoms to pass—or if healing was based on human effort on the part of either the practitioner or patient, and I just wasn’t doing enough.
That’s where I was, mentally, when I sat on my front step one sunny afternoon, feeling alone and tired. Within a few minutes, I realized that although the sun was millions of miles away—and shining in a lot of places—I was feeling its warmth, specifically and individually. It was a childlike moment of hope, of realizing that that’s how God as Love expresses Herself. Love radiates everywhere, and by its very nature warms everything in its light. I realized that I didn’t have to try to get close to Love or work hard to feel Love; I am naturally embraced in Love itself, and Love by its very nature comforts and cares for all, just as the sun warms all that its light rests upon.
In the next moment or two, I heard a quiet voice in my thinking that said, “Sara, you’re wrestling with all these questions, but there is only one question that matters: Is there love?”
I was overwhelmed by a sense of love so powerful that I started to cry. I knew, without a doubt, that the answer was yes. I saw love in the friends who had been bringing me food and carefully leaving it on my doorstep and in the kindness of a friend who read to me via FaceTime on a night when I felt particularly alone and in need. I recognized and felt the very simple ways that I express care toward others—I greet all the dogs in my neighborhood with genuine affection and joy when I’m out on a walk, and my work on a long-term project has been deeply motivated by love for people who have been unjustly treated.
So many instances of love came to thought, and with them the conviction that every single expression of love, no matter how “small,” is proof of divine Love itself. This wasn’t an intellectual exercise. It was a flood of pure love that I felt with absolute certainty in every part of my being. I knew I could answer the question with my whole heart, “Yes, there is love,” which of course meant, “Yes, there is God, who is Love.”
I then thought about the pandemic and the aggressive argument that it has made people feel separated from love, from community, from family—that the narrative of the pandemic has become one of frustration and anger and divisiveness among so many people.
So I prayed with my revitalized sense of love and of God’s love for each of us, knowing that nothing can separate anyone from infinite Love. I just wrapped my arms around everyone who came to my thought in prayer, knowing that Love was comforting each and every one. I refuted the narrative of frustration and anger and reminded myself of the many extraordinary acts of love that have been expressed by so many over these past few years. I felt deeply, in a new way, the truth of one of my favorite passages in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy: “The depth, breadth, height, might, majesty, and glory of infinite Love fill all space. That is enough!” (p. 520).
Over the next day or two, the aggressive symptoms of Covid-19 simply faded away, as if they were being pushed away by the love and joy that were growing within my consciousness. I felt a great peace and calm. I knew without a doubt that Christian Science heals. And I felt God’s very tender love for me.
There was no recovery period from the symptoms and no lingering experience of the illness. It was gone. What remained, however, was the quiet buoyancy of Love and the conviction that the answer to the question “Is there love?” is—and always will be—yes.
Los Angeles, California, US