Feeling the reign of Spirit
The sweet words “God is Spirit” and “man is spiritual” are ones I know very well. These ideas were proved to be true when, through the prayers of a Christian Science practitioner, my young son was quickly healed of asthma, a condition that had troubled him for some time. The account of this healing was published as a testimony in The Christian Science Journal (see Joan Whiteside, “Although I grew up in a Christian home …,” September 1990).
Over the years though, there have been times when a difficulty has not yielded so quickly to prayer, and I’ve yearned to go beyond the familiarity of words to feel a tangible sense of God’s presence and power.
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My thought became alive with Christly ideas.
In one instance when a problem was dragging on, I searched hungrily through Mary Baker Eddy’s writings and found many enlightening statements. Among them was this from No and Yes: “Nothing that ‘worketh or maketh a lie’ is to be found in the divine consciousness” (pp. 15–16). I loved what these truths revealed of God’s infinite goodness as the only reality. I also felt strengthened by this statement from the Bible about God: “Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity” (Habakkuk 1:13).
So one day, when I was struggling, I decided to go to the Christian Science Reading Room to pray and to think deeply about my identity as a child of God, with life in and of Spirit.
As I pondered the words “Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil,” I took special note of this dictionary definition for pure: “free from moral defilement; not sullied or tarnished.” I was inspired by the fact that because the consciousness of my Father-Mother God is absolutely pure and holy, it could not possibly be tarnished, and neither could my identity as God’s exact likeness.
By thinking this way, I was firmly saying “No!” to the false belief claiming that I was material. Instead, I was wholeheartedly accepting that my pure Godlike spiritual identity was all that is true. I was truly feeling the reign of Spirit.
My thought became alive with Christly ideas. I was basking in the glorious truth of my spiritual heritage. The painful material condition naturally faded from my thought, and I left the Reading Room about two hours later, joyous—and permanently healed.
This experience gave me a glimpse of what Christ Jesus could have meant when he said to Nicodemus, “That which is born of the Spirit is spirit” (John 3:6). To me, this means that the spotless purity of our God-reflected spiritual individuality is innate and permanent. And it’s unchanging. Elsewhere in the Scriptures, Jesus declared, “The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21). What an assurance this gave me that my whole life and existence are subject only to God’s law of good and will always be under God’s, Spirit’s, government.
Heartfelt prayer that feels the reign of Spirit goes far beyond the familiarity of words. As we accept the reality of ever-present good, our thoughts are enlivened and we not only know, but we also feel God’s power and love filling us with joy and gratitude. Thought filled with such goodness naturally overflows and unselfishly embraces our fellow man; and it heals.