How I found Christian Science

Light broke through

Many years ago I was, in the words of Mark’s Gospel, one who “had suffered many things of many physicians, . . . and was nothing bettered” (Mark 5:26). I had been in and out of hospitals for four years in the large city where I worked. The diagnosis and treatment changed over that time, but the illness continued. 

A family member, sensing that a less stressful environment might help, moved me to their home in a quieter area. While I was there, I had an attack of acute abdominal pain and was taken to the emergency room. The doctors finally diagnosed me with severe Crohn’s disease and told me I had only six to twelve months to live.

My situation appearing desperate, a kind friend asked an Episcopal bishop to visit me in the hospital and pray for me. Afterward the bishop left me a religious pamphlet. I was not in the mood to read anything, but I noticed on the back flap the words God and healing in the same sentence. I had never considered those two words together before, and it gave me pause.

Moments later, alone in my hospital room, I was suddenly surrounded by light and felt the most all-encompassing love I had ever experienced. In this light, my body seemed to disappear, and I heard a voice say commandingly, “Welcome back!” I was overwhelmed, yet I knew I was OK. All I could do was cry. Feeling like the prodigal son from Jesus’ parable, I wept in the embrace of my Father, divine Love. Even now, so many years later, I can still recall the vivid sense of God’s presence.

Not long after that, I realized that the disease was healed. A series of X-rays confirmed this, and I was soon released from the hospital. 

I had been raised in the Episcopal church, and my first instinct was to reach out to the bishop with the intent of signing up for the ministry. After I explained to him what had happened and said that I considered it a miracle, he reached over and patted my hand and said, “All that has happened is that a very small light has gone on in a very dark room. Follow that light.” 

For the next two years, I did just that. I first went to some traditional Christian churches, trying to find answers. I was met with everything from sympathy to skepticism, and sometimes even annoyance or hostility when they didn’t believe my account of my healing. I then tried New Age churches, which were more welcoming but still missed the heart, and provided no understanding, of what I had experienced. 

Then one day when I was measuring a room for a renovation project at an inn owned by friends, I noticed on the bedside table a book with a cross and crown on it. Out of curiosity I opened the book randomly, and there were the words healing and God together in a passage. I had found Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. 

I asked my friends about it, and they responded lovingly and eagerly about the book and Christian Science. They invited me to a service at their branch Church of Christ, Scientist, where I heard the best explanation of Christ and its healing effect that I had ever heard. 

Continuing to follow the light, I began studying Christian Science. I couldn’t take in the truth fast enough! I soon became a member of The Mother Church (The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston) and a branch church and then took class instruction in Christian Science. That is where my spiritual growth really began.

It was humbling and sometimes discouraging that the more I absorbed of this truth, the more I realized how little I knew. I kept on, though, because a little bit of light is still light. The demonstrations of my understanding were small, but they proved to be important landmarks along the way. 

Step by step, each challenge has brought growth and confidence as I strive to prove what I’m learning of Christian Science. With every challenge, I inevitably go back to the primal fact of the omnipresence and omnipotence of God, divine Love—the Love that I felt in that hospital room many years ago. When I fill my thought with gratitude for the allness of Love, I find that healing is very close behind, if not already there.

I am still following the Christ light. And I share all this in the spirit and love of Christ and Church with all who want to follow the light.

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