Archive for the ‘Christian Science Perspective’ Category

It’s time to elevate the human race   Leave a comment

womans faces in close up
Photo by Anna Shvets 

Important strides have been made toward improving race relations in the United States in the 50-plus years since the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. And there is certainly cause to celebrate progress made in appreciating cultural differences and diversity. But it is sadly obvious that deeply held negative feelings still divide the races. One only has to consider the frequent violence erupting between law enforcement and the black community to realize that the time has come to elevate the human race above the ignorance, injustice, fear, and hatred perpetuated by the long-held belief that we are inherently divided by skin color.

There is something each of us can do – individually, and collectively – by making a decision today that Dr. King, a deeply Christian man, made. He said: “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Hatred springs from ignorance of those we don’t truly know, fear that arises from the unknown, and injustices that have been perpetrated on innocent people. These can be burdens indeed. So, it’s time to “stick with love” – with the courage to have our ignorance, our unjust thoughts and actions, and our fears uncovered and overcome by divine Love, which forgives and heals. In doing so, we can do our part in helping to lift racial prejudice.

Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, said, “Love for mankind is the elevator of the human race; it demonstrates Truth and reflects divine Love” (“The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany.”p. 288).

“Love for mankind.” That’s where we need to start. This involves demonstrating Truth and reflecting divine Love, which is spiritual and universal – so it’s much more than a human emotion. It means elevating our thoughts above defining one another by physical characteristics, and realizing instead that we have one common creator: God, divine Truth and Love, who created us as His spiritual image – one race, that has nothing to do with skin color or human heritage.

This is where we begin to truly know one another. But this understanding also needs to be made practical. And the first step in healing racial divides is to care enough for one another to recognize the challenges and mental wounds that have built up through time, and that pose as barriers to overcoming fears, misconceptions, and injustices. There is a crying need for all of us to get to know and truly value our brothers and sisters of all colors – both spiritually and humanly – and to heal the wounds of injustice through the love that reflects the unchanging love of God.

All humanity is in need of being elevated to that love for others that demonstrates Truth, is just toward everyone, reflects God’s pure love, and brings healing to hearts. In proportion as this is done – through genuine caring and active compassion – the elevation of the human race beyond racial division and strife is accelerated.

Read or listen to the entire article by Barbara Vining from The Christian Science Monitor’s A Christian Science Perspective here

Our divine Mother’s day – every day   Leave a comment

 

woman holding baby

Photo by Elina Sazonova Pexels.com

Right now the world is in great need of a big dose of motherly love and a huge, comforting hug. Where could a loving embrace big enough to cover the whole earth and encircle all humanity come from?

It seems clear to me that this size hug and love could only come from God, 

“MOTHER. God; divine and eternal Principle; Life, Truth, and Love.”

(Mary Baker Eddy“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 592), whom I’ve come to understand through Christian Science as our Father as well as Mother. With the power of God behind it, such an embrace is more than just an expression of affection. It includes God’s protecting, healing power.

Leaning wholeheartedly on this divine Love has helped me navigate this period of widespread fear. I trust God, divine Mother, Love, to meet all my needs and to care for me as a loving parent would care for a child who was afraid. Each morning I pray that the whole world can also feel this healing Love hugging it and telling it not to be afraid.

The reason I feel so confident in divine Love is that I’ve experienced evidence of God’s protecting care for me and my family over the past 25 years. One message in particular that I have consistently been inspired by as a mother is a poem by Mary Baker Eddy titled “Mother’s Evening Prayer” (see “Poems,” pp. 4-5), which has been set to music in the “Christian Science Hymnal.” Its words help me better understand the message of God’s protecting power conveyed in the 91st Psalm in the Bible.

In raising my children in five countries over the years, in Africa and North America, I have sung this hymn hundreds of times. The mothering presence of divine Love that shines through the words has brought not only much-needed comfort in times of sickness or danger, but also healing. The hymn’s opening words, “O gentle presence, peace and joy and power,” point to qualities that God expresses and is the source of – qualities that are also expressed in each of us as God’s spiritual offspring.

Another line refers to God as “Love that guards the nestling’s faltering flight,” and another speaks of being under God’s “mighty wing.” This echoes the 91st Psalm, which explains that God covers us “with [Her] feathers, and under [Her] wings shalt thou trust” (verse 4).

Truly, as Science and Health explains, “Love, the divine Principle, is the Father and Mother of the universe, including man” (p. 256).

This Mother-Love is free to all to know and feel this day and every day, in every corner of the earth.

Read or listen to the entire article by Samuela Orth-Moore from The Christian Science Monitor’s ‘A Christian Science Perspective’ here

Divine distancing isn’t possible!   Leave a comment

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Photo by Daria Shevtsova 

If we’re feeling the pull of loneliness during these times of isolation and quarantine, it’s worth considering what God’s biblical promise, “I will not leave thee,” can mean for us today.

Lately, most people’s day includes physical distancing, isolation, even quarantine. There’s an understandable concern that this can lead to mental darkness, such as intense loneliness. But this doesn’t have to be the case, especially if we understand there’s always one tangible presence close at hand.

Toward the very beginning of the Bible, there’s a very encouraging promise God made to Jacob that truly applies to us all: “I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest … for I will not leave thee” (Genesis 28:15).

Contrary to how it may sometimes seem, time spent alone can be a time in which we feel anything but lonely. When we glimpse how God never, ever leaves us, we can start to feel quite connected with God and centered in Divinity’s pure goodness. It’s actually impossible to distance oneself from our divine source. God is always fully present. To begin to acknowledge this, even just a little bit, makes us feel so much less alone.

A friend of mine just returned from working several months in Antarctica. She had very little contact with the outside world. When I asked her, “What inspired and comforted you when you felt isolated?” she cited a line from Hymn 278 in the “Christian Science Hymnal”: “Pilgrim on earth, home and heaven are within thee” (P.M., adapt. © CSBD). It helped her realize that, as she put it: “I didn’t have to be in my home in North America to feel loved, connected, comforted, or safe. Wherever I was, God’s love and the home God gives me were already there.”

Christian Science reveals that God, who is divine Spirit, creates and consciously maintains each of us – not as mortals, but as immortal, spiritual individuals, safe in God. Monitor founder Mary Baker Eddy explains in her book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” “Infinite space is peopled with God’s ideas, reflecting Him in countless spiritual forms” (p. 503).

Yes, there is no parting from God’s love, companionship, or endless goodness. A desire to open our eyes to the holy fact that we cannot be distanced from God, good, is deep and comforting prayer. Now (and anytime!) is a time we can let divine Love bring a more solid awareness of how, even when we are physically isolated from others, we are in perfect unity with God, who brings healing comfort and companionship.

Read the full article from The Christian Science Monitor’s ‘A Christian Science Perspective’ here

Certainty in uncertain times   Leave a comment

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Photo by Tatiana 

When life’s storms roar, sometimes it can seem the only certainty is uncertainty. But turning to God, the unchangingly loving Principle of the universe, opens the door to progress and healing.

 

This article by Susan Booth Mack Snipes appeared in The Christian Science Monitor.

 

I’ve heard it said that the one thing you can count on is that you can’t count on anything. The changing uncertainties of human existence would tend to support such a sentiment. But are chaos and variableness really the foundation of existence, or is there another, more reliable Principle we can base our lives on?

I grew up singing a hymn from the 1932 “Christian Science Hymnal” that has pointed my thought to the divine Principle that is God. The hymn begins:

In heavenly Love abiding,
No change my heart shall fear;
And safe is such confiding,
For nothing changes here.
The storm may roar without me,
My heart may low be laid;
But God is round about me,
And can I be dismayed?
(No. 148, Anna L. Waring)

At first glance this may just seem comforting, but I’ve found the message is so much more than that – it’s affirmative and powerful. What a startling concept: “no change my heart shall fear … for nothing changes here.” Where is this “here” where nothing changes? The hymn states it right up front: “In heavenly Love,” which is another name for God.

Christian Science explains that God isn’t a person who sits on a throne in the clouds picking and choosing who to listen to and what to fix. God is the Principle of the universe – fixed, stable, perfect, and constant. The Bible assures us of the allness and onlyness of God. The whole of existence is one infinite Principle, divine Mind, and its manifestation: man and the universe, not based in matter, but entirely spiritual and flawless. Mary Baker Eddy writes in the textbook of Christian Science, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” “The Christlike understanding of scientific being and divine healing includes a perfect Principle and idea, – perfect God and perfect man, – as the basis of thought and demonstration” (p. 259).

But what about life’s storms that roar around us? We can’t be simplistic about this. And it’s not appropriate to pretend nothing needs to be solved when humanity is crying out for healing. But dealing with problems, no matter how huge they might seem, does not require us to ignore divine Principle. Actually, an even greater reliance on this unchanging Principle opens the door to progress and healing.

What I am learning is that such situations don’t actually present another version of truth or reality, but are distortions or misinterpretations of the one and only Truth, or God. All the while, the spiritual reality is what is seen from the standpoint of divine Mind, God, rather than from the limited viewpoint of our physical senses: life as entirely spiritual, and God’s care for His spiritual sons and daughters as unlimited and eternal.

Applying these truths in our daily lives takes a willingness to give up our own view of things and to let God be the interpreter of God’s own universe. Science and Health explains: “The divine Principle of the universe must interpret the universe. God is the divine Principle of all that represents Him and of all that really exists. Christian Science, as demonstrated by Jesus, alone reveals the natural, divine Principle of Science” (p. 272).

I have had countless examples of the healing effects of prayerful yielding to God’s viewpoint. One such occasion was years ago when I was experiencing pain in my chest. As I prayed over several days, affirming that God is the immortal Life of all and each of us is the spiritual expression of that Life, the pain lessened.

What certainty and comfort there is in realizing that what we see through physical sense is not the fixed fact about God and God’s children! Yes, we may have to practice yielding to God’s view of the universe in order to more consistently see evidence of divine harmony, but we always have a God-given capability to do this. Our lives and our livelihoods are immovably fixed in Principle, divine Love, whose goodness is unshakable. With this knowledge (even in small degree), we can be up and running to meet life’s challenges with grace and healing humility.

Shielded from contagion during air travel   Leave a comment

scenic photo of pink skyby Vitor Almeida

 

The author of this article was on a plane when her traveling companion was struggling with flu symptoms. She realised that “rather than succumbing to fear, there was something more constructive and health-promoting that I could do while sitting there in my seat. It is an idea I read in a book written by Mary Baker Eddy,.. It says: “… keep your minds so filled with Truth and Love, that sin, disease, and death cannot enter them. … Good thoughts are an impervious armor; clad therewith you are completely shielded from the attacks of error of every sort” (“The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany,” p. 210).

“God communicates directly to each of us purposeful, powerful, and wise thoughts that help us recognize this spiritual reality. These thoughts are an antidote to fear of illness, shedding light on what is right and true about us all. They protect, help, and heal. The Bible tells us, “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11, New King James Version).”

She found that herself and her friend were healthy at the end of the day.

Read this article from The Christian Science Monitor, by Susan Tish here

Find A Daily Lift on this subject: listen to it here

Prayers for the planet   Leave a comment

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“Here in Australia, we’ve been experiencing severe drought, heat, and bushfires. Many are worried that this confirms their fears of human-caused climate change. As the BBC put it recently, ‘The science around climate change is complex – it’s not the cause of bushfires but scientists have long warned that a hotter, drier climate would contribute to Australia’s fires becoming more frequent and more intense.’

So I’ve been doing something I’ve found helpful time and again in alarming or overwhelming situations: praying. I’m praying with the future safety not just of my country, but of this planet, in mind.”

As Christian Science explains that God, Spirit, is Mind, the infinite intelligence that sustains God’s entire creation – including each of us,  the author of this article, Beverly Goldsmith shows how when we tune in to this divine Mind through prayer, we receive direction, pay attention and are receptive.

She goes on to share two biblical accounts of dealing with severe drought conditions followed by an insight from “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” by Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science,: “The ancient prophets gained their foresight from a spiritual, incorporeal standpoint, not by foreshadowing evil and mistaking fact for fiction, – predicting the future from a groundwork of corporeality and human belief.” and ” Acquaintance with the Science of being enables us to commune more largely with the divine Mind, to foresee and foretell events which concern the universal welfare, to be divinely inspired, – yea, to reach the range of fetterless Mind” (p. 84).

Goldsmith is positive that actions to help keep our planet and its inhabitants safe can be discerned. As she concludes: ” There is an urgent need for solutions. God is always present to guide each and every one’s thoughts and actions for the benefit of all, and as we listen for that guidance, practical answers will come.”

Read the entire article from The Christian Science Monitor’s ‘A Christian Science Perspective’

From darkness to light   Leave a comment

silhouette of woman during dawn

“As the much-loved Christmas account goes, a radiant star flickered persistently in the deep shade of night to guide the wise men to the baby Jesus.

We all need a guiding light when we find ourselves in a dark place…..”

The writer tells of her experience when she felt lonely, sad and without hope after her husband had passed on. But during the night of Christmas Eve she had a transformative experience of reaching out to divine Love and was comforted with these words from the Jewish Publication Society’s 1917 version of the Hebrew Bible, Tanakh, “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).

Deeply considering the meaning of these words, she was able to grasp those “thoughts of peace” toward her and the mental darkness disappeared.

You too can be led by this guiding star to peace and healing this Christmas season.

In a Christmas message, Mary Baker Eddy, discoverer of Christian Science and founder of the Monitor, wrote, “The star that looked lovingly down on the manger of our Lord, lends its resplendent light to this hour: the light of Truth, to cheer, guide, and bless man as he reaches forth for the infant idea of divine perfection dawning upon human imperfection, – that calms man’s fears, bears his burdens, beckons him on to Truth and Love and the sweet immunity these bring from sin, sickness, and death” (“Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” p. 320).

This contribution by Michelle Boccanfuso Nanouche was published in The Christian Science Monitor’s ‘A Christian Science Perspective’  read the full article here

Sheltered ‘under the shadow of the Almighty’   Leave a comment

beach dawn daylight horizon

Photo by Tatiana on Pexels.com

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust.” … He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge.
Psalms 91:1, 2, 4, New King James Version

Step by step will those who trust Him find that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
– Mary Baker Eddy, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 444

To listen to or read more click here

 

Posted September 15, 2018 by cscanberra in Christian Science Perspective

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