Praying daily brings freedom

Years ago, I was going about my activities one day when it occurred to me that I hadn’t prayed in a while. Prayer had generally been a daily activity for me, although not necessarily at a certain time or about something specific. I had usually taken moments each day to think about God and His goodness or just to give thanks.

At first, I dismissed the thought. But a few days later, the same thought came again, and I felt impelled to resume my daily prayer. Sometimes I prayed to see progress and healing regarding a specific world issue or something in my own life, and sometimes I prayed to understand more about everyone’s spiritual nature as God’s creation.

Several weeks later, I was out running errands in my car when my eyes suddenly became clouded and itchy. To my right was a familiar parking lot, and I was able to turn in safely and park the car.

Although I was uncomfortable, and it was difficult to see, I remember feeling calm and safe, and it felt very natural to pray. I thought of this verse from a hymn:

Thou, Soul, inspiring—give us vision clear, 
Break earth-bound fetters, sweep away the veil, 
Show the new heaven and earth that shall prevail. 
                 Alleluia! Alleluia!
                 (Violet Hay, Christian Science Hymnal, No. 66, © CSBD)

These comforting words also reminded me of something I’d been thinking about from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy: “Sooner or later we shall learn that the fetters of man’s finite capacity are forged by the illusion that he lives in body instead of in Soul, in matter instead of in Spirit” (p. 223).

I realized that my daily prayers are for the purpose of seeing more and more clearly each day that life is in God—not in body but in Soul, not held down by matter but uplifted by Spirit. This was a glimpse of the “new heaven and . . . new earth” described in the Bible (Revelation 21:1)—a spiritual understanding of myself, of others, and of the world. 

Within minutes, the blurriness and itchiness completely left, almost as if a veil had been lifted, and I was able to go about my day without any further difficulty. This occurred over ten years ago, and the condition has never returned.

While I’m certainly grateful for this quick healing, what I’m most thankful for is that I saw more clearly the importance and effectiveness of daily prayer. Through consistent daily prayer, we find release from the fetters of a limited, matter-based life and are free to recognize our true infinite and spiritual life as God’s creation.

Heidi Kleinsmith Salter
Petoskey, Michigan, US

Bible Lens
February 27, 2023

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