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Praying about the "small" stuff

From the Christian Science Sentinel - July 4, 2011

Originally appeared on spirituality.com

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A while back, I was washing the windows on my house and got to two very small ones in a door. I had never washed them before because they looked frosted. My thoughts in the past had gone something like this: “Why should I wash a window that I can’t see out of anyway?” But this time, I decided to give these tiny little windows a good scrubbing.

I was so surprised to find that they were not actually made of frosted glass at all; they’d just been dirty! I also discovered that on the outside of them, there was some paint from when the house was painted six years prior. Now, post-cleaning, the outside light that comes through them shines directly on a stairway and really helps in illuminating the way up the steps in the daytime.

This experience made me think about other things in my life that I had considered “small frosted windows” or, in other words, things that I had accepted as not clean and orderly but difficult or impossible to change. Several things came to mind such as a couple of relationships with folks who had been close friends in the past but with whom I hadn’t been in contact for some time because of rough patches in communications, a couple of small health problems, and a few things about my house that I thought I couldn’t afford to fix.

It’s not that I looked for troubled spots. We never find peace or good by looking for trouble, but in the same way that I happened to discover the paint on the outside of my freshly washed window, when I looked at my life in a fresh way I discovered these things that needed to be cleaned up. So I decided to get to work cleaning my thought about these other “small frosted window” type situations that had been uncovered. To do this, I knew I needed to pray about each one carefully.

One experience that has encouraged me in this endeavor is that some time ago I had a tooth that had been hurting for a couple of years. I had never prayed about it because it was a small annoyance and hurt only when I ate or drank certain things, though it did wiggle a little bit too. As I consciously handed this problem over to God’s care, I found that there was a small part of a Bible verse that kept coming to my thought: “rooted and grounded in love.”

When I looked up the verse, I found that it is from Ephesians 3 and the entire sentence (verses 14-19) goes like this: “For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.”

“Strengthened by the might of his Spirit” and “rooted and grounded in love” – this was just what I wanted to feel! So I decided that it would be helpful to get a better understanding and appreciation of the Christ. As I studied, I did a search in the Bible and in Mary Baker Eddy’s writings for the phrase, “Christ is.” It was so helpful to contemplate deeply the references that came up. I found that one of the references in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures says, “Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness” (p. 332).

I thought of the many times in my life when ideas came to me—ideas that I attribute to God because they were calm, persistent, and not necessarily ideas that I had in my own plan for myself. When I implemented these ideas, they turned out to supply just the right solution to a problem or bring a physical healing. I became profoundly grateful for this Christly presence that I feel with me whenever I am still and listen with my heart to hear God’s voice. It occurred to me how true it is that the Christ is “the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever” (Heb. 13:8). I felt blessed and calm. I felt the light of Love.

That evening when I was eating dinner, I accidentally bit down on a bone that was in my meal and there was a sharp sensation in the tooth that had been painful off and on for so long. I was calmly able to dismiss any fear that I had broken the tooth or that it would hurt again, or that the Christ had not already brought healing. In that immediate dismissal of fear and pain, the tooth was fully healed. It has been years now, with no further pain in the tooth, and it also became absolutely stable with no more wiggling.

I am so grateful for God, who has sent the timeless Christ to us to heal, lead, and protect us when we listen for its Godly messages.

I still have some “small frosted window” type situations in my life, and cleaning them with prayer is a work in progress, but this new strong push not to let small challenges linger unaddressed has brought an ongoing process of prayer that has let in more of the Christ light. This light of Love has healed relationships, fulfilled my financial needs, and brought healing of lingering physical conditions. Do you have any “small frosted windows” that you’d like to wash with your own prayers?


Sue Holzberlein is a Christian Science practitioner in Ashby, Massachusetts.

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