No shortage of good

A woman called a Christian Science practitioner to ask him to support her as she prayed for her husband. Her husband taught at a university, and it appeared that one of his classes would not meet the enrollment requirement. He needed a minimum of eight students for the class to go forward and only two had enrolled by the end of the pre-registration period. If the class was cancelled, he would lose a substantial percentage of his income.

The Christian Science practitioner agreed to pray with the woman, noting: “God gives you His spiritual ideas, and in turn, they give you daily supplies. Never ask for to-morrow: it is enough that divine Love is an ever-present help; and if you wait, never doubting, you will have all you need every moment” (Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellaneous Writings 1883–1896, p. 307).

A few days later, the professor’s wife called the Christian Science practitioner to report that over 200 students had registered for the course. Multiple class sections had to be offered and additional instructors employed. The idea that had come to the professor was to offer the course online instead of face-to-face. The response to this change was overwhelming.

When it becomes more apparent that supply is spiritual, one begins to realize that supply must be from divine Mind, God—infinite and unlimited, consisting of spiritual ideas. For example, there is never a shortage of kindness, honesty, creativity, order, love. The true substance of these qualities is spiritual. They emanate from Mind and are therefore infinite.  Recognizing this spiritual truth brings it to light in our experience, and solutions come to light. Similarly, there is no shortage of numbers for doing calculations or balancing budgets. Numbers are ideas, not finite objects in limited supply. There is never a shortage of 5’s or 9’s. Whatever God unfolds, there’s never a shortage or restriction in His unfoldment. So, in the case of the college class size, why limit expectations to only eight students?

Quite a few years ago I left a comfortable teaching position in Alabama to return to graduate school. I was relying on a scholarship I had been offered to cover the majority of my anticipated expenses. But after enrolling at the university and beginning my studies, I was notified that the scholarship would not be available. And several days later, having exhausted my savings, I was broke.

When it becomes more apparent that supply is spiritual, one begins to realize that supply must be from divine Mind.

I began to pray about the situation, studying two examples of needs being met in the Bible: Elijah being sustained by a widow during a time of famine (see I Kings, chap.  17) and Jesus feeding the multitude with five loaves and two fish (see Matthew, chap. 14). Contemplating these stories, I knew that these accounts of supply meeting demand were not isolated miracles from biblical times, but were grounded in divine Principle, ever present and ever operative, although I couldn’t humanly outline what would transpire in my own case.

The following Sunday I attended a service at the local Christian Science Society. With four dollars in my checking account that morning, I placed a check for two dollars in the collection, feeling confident that something would be revealed to me and affirming that divine Love would meet my legitimate need (see Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 494).

Monday morning I was unexpectedly offered a part-time job at the university press and began work the next day. I also was asked to do some substitute teaching, and had enough food and gas to last me until I received a paycheck. About two months later I was offered a regular half-time position with flexible hours that allowed me to work around my class schedule. Three years later I completed my doctorate having no debt to repay.

A poem by Pearle M. Warren published in the Christian Science Sentinel over 70 years ago gives a confident and loving view of supply and demand.

“I do not need to know the way
That Love will meet my need;
I only need to trust each day,
And on Love’s bounty feed.

Then, one by one, as fetters fall,
I’ll see the good at hand—
I’ll see Love answers ere we call;
Supply precedes demand.”
(January 6, 1940)

Divine Love’s ideas are indeed eternally present and meet our daily needs, whatever they may be. It’s such a great joy to realize this.

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