A Prayer and a Cat   Leave a comment

The Christian Science Church – a part of the Canberra community.  Members share testimonies and talk about their lives as Christian Scientists. 

shutterstock_124754725This article, A Prayer and a Cat, is by Debbie who is a member of the Christian Science Church in Canberra.  She describes how her prayers for the world also resulted in healing for a friend’s cat.

I would like to share a healing that happened some years ago but it’s one that has meant a lot to me.

At the time I was working as a teacher in a local primary school.  There was one particular colleague that I sat with sometimes at lunch; she often talked to me about her cat, Hershey, who seemed to be a big part of her life.  However, at this particular time much of her conversation was about her upcoming trip to the US – a holiday for which they had been saving for a long time.

One day I walked into the staff room to find this friend crying gently while she ate her sandwich.  I sat with her and asked what had upset her.  She said that Hershey was sick and the vet had said he would die any day.  She was supposed to leave for the US in a few days and no cattery would take a cat that was about to die.  The kindest thing to do, the vet said, was to put him to sleep before she left.

My friend couldn’t bring herself to put her beloved cat down and felt guilty that she was leaving him when he was so ill.  Yet the holiday couldn’t be cancelled at this late date.

Without thinking too much I said:  “Would you like me to mind Hershey?” Immediately she jumped at this idea and within the minute it was settled.  She said she understood that he would not be alive when she returned but that at least he could go in his own time and in comfort.  I agreed.

Two days later Hershey was delivered to my place.  I admit I was not prepared for the sight of him.  He lay motionless in his basket; he was skin and bones with dull tufty fur and sore spots; his eyes remained closed.  I was informed that he needed his own quiet, dark room with no interruptions except for his medication.  I had not considered the issue of medication. He had so many!  She explained that Hershey had an immune deficiency condition – a cat’s version of AIDS she said.  We installed Hershey in his room and she said her good-byes.

For two days I tried to give Hershey his medication but it seemed to cause him so much stress.  I couldn’t see the point so I stopped.  I had been brought up in Christian Science and had always solved problems quickly through prayer.  Prayer for me was not a passive asking God for help but an active change of base in my thinking and spiritual reasoning.

There had been a lot of news coverage at this time around the issue of AIDS and I had been praying about this.  In my reasoning I went back to my basic beliefs:  I believed that there was a controlling order or principle to the universe and that principle was Love – another name for God.  A God of love I reasoned could not make a dangerous universe; that a God of Love protected creation, it didn’t expose it to harm.  I had proved many times that holding to spiritual truths, even in the face of evidence to the contrary, resolved inharmonious situations.

Now I applied this reasoning to Hershey. He was part of Love’s creation and I knew this Love was a powerful force for good.   In the textbook of Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy writes:  You embrace your body in your thought, and you should delineate upon it thoughts of health, not of sickness (p208) so I embraced Hershey in my thought in this way.  I didn’t dwell on him, but I held to this idea every time I did think of him.  I felt safe that he was safe.

Very quickly he began to respond.  In a day or so he was up and walking about his room; another day or two he was out and exploring the house.

At the end of two weeks my friend returned and phoned to see how things had gone with Hershey.  She was very surprised to hear that he was ready to be picked up.  When she arrived to collect him he was sitting on the back of the lounge in the sun looking out the window.  He was plump and healthy, his fur was flawless and sleek and shiny, and he had a playful sparkle in his eyes.  He was very glad to be going home.

Sometimes when I pray for the world I am tempted to wonder:  Are my prayers doing any good?  This experience with Hershey gave me further proof that spiritual truths are powerful, more powerful than material evidence, and that prayers are effective in bringing about harmony in any situation – even those given up as hopeless.  I continue to be grateful for all that I am learning in my on-going study of Christian Science.

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