I was on a quest to know God

Many years ago, I lost faith in the religious tradition in which I had been raised, frustrated that God was worshiped only once a week. As an expectant mother, I prayed and sought a God for my child to believe in. Then, a college friend called me after receiving my baby announcement. Previously a staunch follower of astrology, she shared that she had now found something called Christian Science that had utterly transformed her life and led her on a completely new path. Through Christian Science, she was gaining an understanding of God’s government of the universe. She also explained how happily Christian Scientists lived. 

When I told my friend that I needed such a God in raising my child, she suggested I go to the local Christian Science Reading Room and buy Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, as well as a compilation of Mrs. Eddy’s other published works called Prose Works. Because this friend had had such a radical change in her life and was the most brilliant woman I knew, I purchased the two books, although I did not immediately embrace Christian Science. I was finding what it said about God far different than what I felt I knew of Him. But my desire to know God kept me reading. 

One day as I was reading Science and Health, I came across this sentence: “The habitual struggle to be always good is unceasing prayer” (p. 4). This enlightened explanation of prayer answered many of my theological questions and revealed a more expansive way to worship God. Before this, my concept of communion with our heavenly Father was narrow. I believed that praying meant getting down on your knees, closing your eyes, folding your hands, and asking God for whatever you needed. This petition would be answered or ignored depending upon whether or not God found you worthy. To “pray without ceasing” as advised by the Apostle Paul (I Thessalonians 5:17) was, therefore, impossible. 

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September 18, 2023

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