A couple of years ago, I decided to become a caddy at a local golf course because I love to play golf, and I thought it would be interesting to see the game from an entirely different perspective. A caddy carries a golfer's bag of clubs while the golfer is playing. Part of the job is to clean the clubs, tend to the flags, help rake the sand traps, and do other tasks as well.
Although I'm athletic and participate in many sports like lacrosse and running, I was a bit concerned about my duties as a caddy. I would have to carry a 20-pound bag for four hours at a time while walking up and down very steep hills. Sometimes, I would even have to trek through the woods and wade through water to find my golfer's ball.
A week into this job, I started to experience painful shin splints. At first I thought they'd go away in a few days. I didn't really pay too much attention to them. But I realized later that just ignoring a problem isn't helpful. As a Christian Scientist, I'd seen how useful and effective prayer was, whether in healing an injury or when taking a difficult test at school. As far back as I can remember, I've been living the ideas from "the scientific statement of being" in Science and Health (see p. 468). It reminds me that every person, no matter who they are, is spiritual, not material. So after a few days of putting up with the shin splints, I began to pray as I'd learned to, in order to find healing.
I could clean the clubs, rake the traps, and tend the flag "with Love along the way."
One day, when I was waling on the course, I had something like a revelation. The opening line from Hymn 139 in the Christian Science Hymnal came to me: "I walk with Love along the way." Love with a capital L is one of seven synonyms for God found in Science and Health. I realized that since God made everyone in His image and likeness, as stated in the Bible's first chapter of Genesis, and since God is Love, I could never be separated from God. This means that I could walk with God throughout my day, no matter what I was doing. This hymn also meant to me that I could naturally do everything I needed to do with love. I could focus on how I could love more and serve others through caddying. I also could clean the clubs, rake the traps, and tend the flag "with Love along the way." This is what my real purpose was: to express Love.
I really stuck to those wonderful ideas while caddying, and they helped me progress in terms of how I thought about my situation. The more I focused on how I could love others, the less I thought about myself and any pain I might feel.
After a few days, I realized that the shin splints were entirely gone. And they didn't come back. I continued my job as a caddy without any more difficulties. Looking back, I can see how fear was clouding my thoughts and making me think I couldn't do something that I loved. But fear was no match for Love. Even after this healing, I continued to see that "God's healing truth is free to all,/Our Father answers every call" (Hymn 139).
By the end of the summer, I actually became a "double-bagger," a caddy who carries two bags at the same time for two golfers. I felt very excited that I was being promoted, and I made a lot of new friends. This healing started my summer off on a good foot because I was doing everything with Love. |
FOR MORE ON THIS TOPIC
You can hear Colby speak on this topic on a Sentinel Radio program called "Kids find healing through prayer." To purchase a download of this program, #825, go to www.sentinelradio.com and click on Audio Download Store.
Colby is in ninth grade and lives in Massachusetts. He looks forward to one day beating his dad in a friendly round of golf.
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