The gentle sun chime caught my attention. Its pleasing, tinkling sound roused me. I had spent the past few days deep in thought, not sleeping well, worrying and wondering. The news contained depressing stories of political infighting and domestic violence, worldwide terrorism, disease, poverty, and hunger. The world seemed to be coming apart.
I had seen proof for many years that prayer is truly effective. But recently the world had seemed to me so threatened that I wondered, “What can one individual possibly do to ameliorate this plethora of problems facing the world?”
Then I heard the gentle sound of that sun chime. This tinkling chime, powered only by the light of the sun shining through the window, reminded me of the “still small voice” referred to in the Bible, in contrast to earthquake, wind, and fire (see I Kings 19:11, 12).
In a world where material forces and threats can seem so pervasive, the tinkling chime reminded me of the always present power of God, infinite good—omnipotent Spirit—which is the only genuine power in the universe. Also, having just finished studying in the Bible the wonderful guidance for living contained in the Sermon on the Mount—my “User’s Guide” to finding peace and comfort (see Matthew, chaps. 5—7)—I was immediately reminded of Christ Jesus’ encouraging words to his followers: “ Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid” (Matthew 5:14).
The Master makes clear that we’re to let our light of spirituality shine as a beacon to mankind. Can our prayers and Christly actions bring inspiration, harmony, comfort, and healing? Yes!
Can our prayers and Christly actions bring inspiration, harmony, comfort, and healing? Yes!
Jesus also said, “I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness” (John 12:46). The light he reflected was divine—imparting to others spiritual enlightenment, the understanding that life is actually in Spirit, God, not in matter, that God is ever present, active, vital Truth itself, which causes only good. Jesus showed that this light of spiritual understanding extinguishes the darkness of a mortal, material sense of life, which would pull us downward with doubt and fear, concerns that we are helpless, alone, and without God.
Mary Baker Eddy, speaking of the Science of healing practiced by Jesus, writes: “Christian Science brings to the body the sunlight of Truth, which invigorates and purifies. Christian Science acts as an alterative, neutralizing error with Truth.… The effect of this Science is to stir the human mind to a change of base, on which it may yield to the harmony of the divine Mind” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p 162).
As I pondered this, I saw its broader application to the world. And I recalled a lesson I learned a number of years ago. I was on a business trip thousands of miles from home, and I was suffering from an infection in my foot. Because I was at a business exposition, I was forced to be on my feet from morning until night. The condition quickly worsened, and it was apparent that infection and inflammation were spreading with frightening symptoms.
I was addressing the problem with prayer, as I had learned to do as a student of Christian Science, using Jesus’ example of leaning on God for help and healing. I was identifying myself as a perfect spiritual idea of God rather than as an infected, fleshly presence.
It was so good to finally get on a plane to return home. As I got into bed that night, I read from the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health, to support my prayer. That book, a companion to the Holy Bible, delves into a deeper, spiritual explanation of the Scriptures. Among other things, it brings out how Jesus lived, taught, healed, and uplifted others.
As I opened the book, my eyes fell on this spiritual definition of the biblical term red dragon (see Revelation, chap. 12) in the Glossary: “Error; fear; inflammation; sensuality; subtlety; animal magnetism; envy; revenge” (p. 593). Parts of that definition surely seemed to describe me!
Even through the extreme discomfort, I started laughing with relief, because I saw the mental basis of the trouble. Through the study of Christian Science I understood that, as the textbook says: “Disease is an image of thought externalized. The mental state is called a material state. Whatever is cherished in mortal mind as the physical condition is imaged forth on the body” (Science and Health, p. 411).
As Jesus proved, sin and disease cannot stand in the presence of spiritual light.
I felt a sense of peace. The spiritual light of my real being and harmony was penetrating the darkness.
The problem that seemed so painful, that would convince me that error, fear, inflammation were real—an actual part of God’s entirely good, spiritual creation—expressed a false view of life. I had fallen once again for the error of believing that life is material, subject to every phase of evil, and that we are not really the image of God, as the Scriptures say we are (see Genesis 1:27).
I looked up what else Science and Health had to say about the red dragon. Included was this statement: “That false claim—that ancient belief, that old serpent whose name is devil (evil), claiming that there is intelligence in matter either to benefit or to injure men—is pure delusion, the red dragon; and it is cast out by Christ, Truth, the spiritual idea, and so proved to be powerless” (p. 567).
I went right to sleep, and in the morning there was absolutely no sign of the problem, which had seemed so serious the week before.
As Jesus proved, sin and disease cannot stand in the presence of spiritual light. He and the disciples brought healing to the world, not through physical means or forces but through the light of Truth. There was the answer I sought! Jesus taught and showed that each of us can bring help and healing to the world. He said reassuringly, “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father” (John 14:12).
Thinking about that little sun chime inspired me to gain a fresh perception of what I knew in my heart to be true: We are not slaves to the evils and vagaries of a material universe, and thus unable to help humanity. We’re actually made by God and governed by Him. It’s the very nature of each one of us, as His spiritual reflection, to express the light of His love in our prayers and in our Christlike lives, continuing the vital healing work of the master Christian.
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