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Expressing the Christ-spirit

The Comfort That Heals

From the June 6, 1977 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

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Every human heart is yearning for love and comfort in one form or another. Yet, even when we are endeavoring to watch our thoughts and keep them in accord with Christian Science, we may overlook the need for tenderness, compassion, and a desire to comfort others. We may slip into just making cold, scientific statements of Truth. Christ Jesus, on the other hand, lived love. And he commanded his followers to "love one another." John 13:34; Christian Science teaches that to bring healing, the letter of metaphysics needs to be accompanied by selfless love and compassion, the spirit and inspiration of the Christ.

It is often right and necessary to make clear, firm statements of Truth when talking to someone wanting and needing healing. But even at these times it is well to give some tender word of comfort. Mrs. Eddy writes in Science and Health, "The tender word and Christian encouragement of an invalid, pitiful patience with his fears and the removal of them, are better than hecatombs of gushing theories, stereotyped borrowed speeches, and the doling of arguments, which are but so many parodies on legitimate Christian Science, aflame with divine Love." Science and Health, p. 367;

One may have the desire to comfort and yet fail to do so despite the compassionate love in his heart. What else is needed? The spiritual discernment and wisdom that enable one to understand where the individual is mentally—what his particular need is, what he is ready for at that moment. Then one knows where and how to reach him and comfort him.

In the parable of the good Samaritan, Jesus tells of a man who was left wounded at the side of the road. Others had passed by on the other side. But the good Samaritan went to him where he was. He discerned the man's thought and so was able to touch it with love and compassion and comfort him, at the same time doing the practical thing.

But to bring the comfort that heals, still more is needed — namely, the ability to dispel the illusion of discord and replace it with spiritual reality. This demands that we live the Christly qualities: honesty, selflessness, generosity, forgiveness, love. For only through such Christliness do we reach the point of understanding where we can discern and uncover error and perceive its nothingness, and know and see what is true.

The love that comforts and heals is not personal and emotional but spiritual, impartial, and universal. This is the love we reflect from God, the impartial love that loves simply because it is love and sees everything as God created it, lovely and beautiful and worthy of God's love.

We read that once when Mrs. Eddy mentioned to some of her students the great need of love, one of them asked, "Do you mean love of person?" And Mrs. Eddy answered, "No, I mean love of good." We Knew Mary Baker Eddy, First Series (Boston: The Christian Science Publishing Society, 1943), p. 84 .

We must have this love if we are to practice and develop the art of comforting. We must have it if we are to heal and keep healing —and so help the Church of Christ, Scientist, to comfort and heal the world.

How buoying it is to realize that as you and I express the Christ-spirit, we can bring comfort and healing to a troubled world! The Comforter, which Jesus promised would come, is, of course, not a person but divine Science. It comforts in every situation: in sorrow, sickness, lack, loneliness. Every problem can be solved by turning to this Comforter, this Science of Christ, which consists of the laws of God and manifests the spirit of the Christ.

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