The unseen hand that guides us
We can all hear the still, small voice and feel the presence of God, divine Love.
I watched my eleven-month-old daughter focus on the curtains as they billowed out from the windows, seeming to move of their own accord. She smiled in delight at the invisible stream of air as it created an effect of an unseen power.
She didn’t need to understand the force that made the curtain move to appreciate the beauty of the event she was witnessing. Observing her, I saw her innocence and thought about how this could apply more deeply to an embrace of divine Truth as it applies to healing.
Often we see the world through a lens of material observation, rules, and laws. However, as we exchange this belief of life as material for a truly spiritual perspective, we find an understanding based not on human knowledge or the senses but on spiritual understanding. We can each choose to see our current experience either from a material basis or from spiritual Truth.
A statement by Mary Baker Eddy published in her Miscellaneous Writings 1883–1896 elucidates this: “A falling apple suggested to Newton more than the simple fact cognized by the senses, to which it seemed to fall by reason of its own ponderosity; but the primal cause, or Mind-force, invisible to material sense, lay concealed in the treasure-troves of Science” (p. 22).
These “treasure-troves” of Science are found throughout the Bible, from early prophets to Christ Jesus and his disciples. They are the pearls of great value that express God’s Father-Mother love and universal omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience, and omni-action, guiding and caring for each of us as God’s spiritual idea.
One of these pearls is seen when the prophet Elijah was fleeing for his life and took refuge in a cave (see I Kings 19:2–12). There he experienced monumental physical events—a wind so strong that it “rent the mountains,” the roar of an earthquake, and the fury of a great fire. Elijah did not find his atonement with God through these physical wonders. It was when Elijah quieted his thoughts and fears and chose to listen to God’s unseen “still small voice” that he was guided forward, not by material influence, but by the undisturbed spiritual embrace that teaches us and brings us closer to God.
We all have times when, like Elijah, we struggle through mental and physical turbulence. And we can all hear the still, small voice and feel the invisible presence and activity of God, divine Love, guarding and protecting us when we choose to turn away from matter to Spirit.
I, too, felt the Christ—the truth of God destroying human fear—when I was restoring a classic sailboat. One day while working alone, I began humming Hymn 52 (words by Mary Alice Dayton) from the Christian Science Hymnal. The last two lines of the second verse, “The clouds of sense roll back, and show / The form divinely fair,” seemed to support the work I was doing as I reinforced the long joint between the hull and the deck. I was thinking of how the work could reflect the idea of a “form divinely fair” as I made the joint one strong, continuous curve, thereby harmonizing the hull and the deck, until suddenly I reached out, lost my balance, and fell headfirst from the deck, 18 feet to the concrete floor below.
Immediately as I was falling, I turned to the spiritual truth that there never was a moment when I was separated from divine Love. I heard a still, small voice saying, “I have you in My arms; all is well.” The next moment I found myself safely on the ground between the cradle that supported the boat and the wall of the shed.
Lying alone on the concrete, I was tempted to take material, sense-based inventory of what might be broken and if I could move my body. But instead, I thought of Christ Jesus’ disciples when they faced a great storm, fearing for their lives. Waking Jesus, they asked, “Master, carest thou not that we perish?” (Mark 4:38). As Jesus must have done amidst the raging storm, I turned my thought to the spiritual truth that I was made in the image and likeness of God—upright, whole, and pure.
This strengthened my resolve. I again resisted the temptation to take inventory and instead acknowledged God as All-in-all. I understood that my true identity was a reflection of His spiritual perfection. My thought became calmer, and I recalled part of the answer to the question “What is man?” in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mrs. Eddy: “Man is not matter; he is not made up of brain, blood, bones, and other material elements. The Scriptures inform us that man is made in the image and likeness of God. Matter is not that likeness. The likeness of Spirit cannot be so unlike Spirit. Man is spiritual and perfect; and because he is spiritual and perfect, he must be so understood in Christian Science” (p. 475). The truth of my being was that I was now, and always had been, safe, unable to fall from grace.
God’s unseen power holds us safely in every activity.
This prayer stilled the storm in my thought and calmed the sea of fear. I stood up and walked toward the other end of the shed. As I reached to open the door, I saw that the fingers of one hand were bent backward and disfigured. Again, I turned away from the material picture and affirmed that Love had protected me. I was not only safe but whole and complete. As I reached to open the door, my fingers returned to their proper alignment.
The protection and healing we experience in Christian Science are a result of our willingness to turn to God with true desire and see ourselves and others as wholly spiritual ideas. We each express integrity, beauty, harmony—are conceived by Truth and Love as a “form divinely fair.”
God’s unseen power, which is not unlike the invisible force my daughter was witnessing with those billowing curtains, holds us safely in every activity. As Elijah heard the still, small voice and Jesus’ disciples witnessed the calming of the sea, so each one of us can feel the invisible power of divine Truth and Love, wherever we are.