Years ago, I had an experience that proved to me God’s ability to heal and save in any circumstance and showed me that prayer can bring healing when we are faced with malaria or any other disease.
I had been in Niger, West Africa, for approximately 11 months, volunteering for the Peace Corps, when I began to display symptoms of malaria. In accordance with Peace Corps protocol and regulations, I was placed under medical care, and the doctors diagnosed me with malaria.
Though I was able to return to my post within a few days, when I was back in the United States about a year later, the symptoms came back even more aggressively. This time I was free to rely wholly on Christian Science treatment. I had spoken with a Christian Science practitioner when in Niger, and the same practitioner was called again. And, of course, we looked to God as “a very present help in trouble” (Psalms 46:1).
The practitioner had previously reminded me that no matter how strong the belief that man can be harmed may be, it is nothing but a lie, because God knows nothing of illness or inharmony, and man is His spiritual image and likeness. These words reflected the essence of a passage in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy that has always been important to me. It reads, “To the Christian Science healer, sickness is a dream from which the patient needs to be awakened” (p. 417). Sickness is never part of our true, spiritual identity.
Another idea from Science and Health that gave me much comfort was: “Man was not created from a material basis, nor bidden to obey material laws which Spirit never made; his province is in spiritual statutes, in the higher law of Mind” (p. 307). I had a growing conviction that this claim of illness had no law behind it, and that spiritually I was innocent of breaking any supposed material law. God had ordained perfect wholeness for His spiritual ideas, and I had the right to experience perfect health indefinitely.
The healing came when, one night, a clear sense came over me that I was not personally responsible for healing this problem, and that the most powerful, only real force in existence—divine Love itself—was taking perfect care of me, so I had nothing to fear. Within minutes of this quiet and gentle assurance, which removed all fear and concern, I suddenly regained my appetite, my normal temperature returned, I became awake and alert, and the frequent bouts of delirium and fevers stopped, never to return.
This proved to me that it is God, Truth, who heals and whose love transforms human consciousness, removing all fear and any false sense of danger or disease. As the Bible puts it, “For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Habakkuk 2:14).
I never saw a period of relapse again, and when I later applied for Naval Flight School, a medical exam at the Centers for Disease Control showed no sign of the disease.
It is certainly true that God is taking perfect care of us, and no other so-called power can disrupt this perfection. As Jesus stated, “With God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26), even the destruction of disease. I am so grateful for God’s love that destroys all lies, for the diligent prayers of the practitioner who helped me, the example set by Christ Jesus, and for the tireless work of Mrs. Eddy to share with us this Science we can rely on at every moment.
Somerville, Massachusetts, US
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