I was blessed to have grown up in a Christian Science Sunday School where some of my teachers were class taught. They brought with them a lot of understanding and love for Christian Science.
One of them instilled in us the need to study the Church Manual on a daily basis, even if it was a page a day. That is how I found out about class instruction and the study of the chapter “Recapitulation” from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. English was not my primary language, but the blessing of having the original text already translated into my own tongue was a tremendous help.
Years passed, and my country’s government became totalitarian. As a young mother, my greatest wish was to come to the United States so my children could grow up in a free country, and so I could fulfill my desire to take class instruction.
It took a number of years to have these desires granted. After going through a divorce, I was given permission to leave my country with our two young children, but first I had to stay and work in the fields for two years. Then I could travel to a host country and remain there for six months before being allowed to enter the United States.
From that host country, I wrote to a Christian Science teacher. I had heard of her wonderful healing work, and we corresponded back and forth for several months until I was accepted for class in the United States the following spring.
Then things suddenly changed. The United States government lengthened the time that prospective immigrants needed to remain in their host country to two years. I prayed about this and was granted an interview with the American ambassador. I explained to him my need to be in the United States the following spring. He gave me two options: I could send one of the children ahead to reunite with the children’s father (who had immigrated to the US earlier) or I could remarry this man.
Since remarrying would have meant coming to the United States under false pretenses, I couldn’t do that. That left only the first option—to send one of my children ahead. That night I struggled mightily, going back and forth as to which of the two children should go. Since they were both very young, I could not bear to send either one. Finally, I prayed with all my heart for an answer and heard these words: “You stay together or you go together.” This brought me a measure of peace, and over the next few weeks I continued to pray for a truly right solution.
Then a most extraordinary thing happened. Without explanation, a government official called and told me to be ready to leave the country shortly. Two weeks later the children and I boarded a flight to the United States. It turned out to be the only flight available for people who were not going to reunite with families, and truly through the grace of God, we were on it.
To my joy, though a refugee, once in the United States I quickly secured a wonderful job at a bank. After working there for a few months, I spoke with the personnel department about my need to be away for two weeks to take a class pertaining to my church. Again I was given a choice: I could keep my job or take class instruction.
As logical as it might have seemed to choose keeping my job, I decided to enter class. I knew that if I did not, the carnal mind would continue to find an excuse, year after year, to keep me from going forward and forever delay my spiritual progress. And I knew that my spiritual progress could only bless my children as well as me, even though this meant leaving my job at the bank. To this day, I can see the wisdom of my decision.
Class instruction provided a priceless foundation for my life. My children and I have been blessed in countless ways. In fact, following class instruction, I was able to secure a job that ensured there was no disruption in the care of my children or me. Truly class instruction is the greatest gift of all, and I will be forever grateful.
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