OLIVE GLEN FOUNDATION ANNUAL MEETING
September 23, 2017
“THE UNIVERSAL AND PERFECT REMEDY” (p. 393:32)
by Andrea Jenks McCormick, C.S.
We are witnesses to the greatest discovery in human history. ….in fact for all time. There will never be a greater discovery…not in 10 years, 100 years or even a million years. It is the discovery of the Science of the Christ by our Leader, Mary Baker Eddy….a discovery that is the road to salvation and healing for all mankind…the “universal and perfect remedy”.
As the author of the greatest book in the world (along with the Holy Bible) our Leader said, “Above Arcturus and his sons, broader than the solar system and higher than the atmosphere of our planets, is the Science of mental healing.” (Mis Writ 174: 12)
This path to healing, the Science of the Christ which Jesus taught to all who are willing to follow him, is not a forked road offering us two choices…the choice to treat matter or the choice to deny the existence of matter and the Allness of God. It might seem that there are two paths to healing available to us – medical care or Christian Science. Yet the teachings of the most effective healer ever known – Christ Jesus – point to a single, inevitable path to healing. Our Leader, Mary Baker Eddy said, “The way is straight and narrow, which leads to the understanding that God is the only Life.” (p. 324:13) Jesus referred to this straight and narrow way when he said, “I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.” (John 18:37). Jesus taught his followers not to believe what they observed with their eyes, also known as empirical knowledge, about which Mrs. Eddy says, ”Empirical knowledge is worse than useless; it has never advanced man a single step in the scale of being.” (Mis Writ p. 234:15-17) Empirical knowledge avoids science and logic and is verified by observation alone. On the other hand, what does advance man is this – according to our Leader: “Thought imbued with purity, Truth and Love, instructed in the Science of metaphysical healing, is the most potent and desirable remedial agent on the earth.” (Misc Writ. p. 4) “Teach the meekness and might of life ‘hid with Christ in God’, and there will be no desire for other healing methods.” (S&H p. 445:13) Are we willing to forsake matter for Spirit, and embrace this discovery, this revelation…..or are walking away from it? After hearing what was required of them and declaring that is was too hard, many of Jesus followers left him; after which Jesus turned to his disciples and asked, “Will ye go away? And Peter profoundly answered, “To whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (John 6: 67-69)
Following in Jesus’ footsteps demands “absolute consecration of thought, energy and desire”, says Mrs. Eddy. Is that kind of dedication worth it order to bring into our experience the universal and perfect remedy for healing? We have to answer that question for ourselves. It is our decision. Listen to our Leader’s clear words on this topic:
[QUOTE]“We are in the Valley of Decision. Shall we depart from the example of the Master in Christian Science, Jesus of Nazareth, - than whom mankind hath no higher ideal? He who demonstrated his power over sin, disease, and death, is the master Metaphysician. To seek or employ other means than those the Master used in demonstrating Life scientifically, is to lose the priceless knowledge of his Principle and practice. He said, ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ Gain a pure Christianity (the definition of pure is: not debased by a mixture with something of less value) gain a pure Christianity; for that is requisite for healing the sick. Then you will need no other aid, and will have full faith in his prophecy, ‘and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd;’ but, the Word must abide in us, if we would obtain that promise. We cannot depart from his holy example, - we cannot leave Christ for the schools which crucify him, and yet follow him in healing. Fidelity to his precepts and practice is the only passport to his power;” [END OF QUOTE](Mis Writ p. 270:1) We can’t travel the world without a passport in our hands…..and we can’t access the ever-presence of the Christ without our passport to his power, which is obedience to his precepts, or commandments, along with the practice he demanded of us, “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. “ (Mark 16:15) “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils, freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matt. 10:8) Those particular illnesses may not resonate with us because they are not terms we frequently use today. But wasn’t he simply describing the whole gamut of mortal mind’s claims about God’s man? New names for illnesses are created on a regular basis. But none of them have been or ever will be true.
Dr. John Tutt was a medical doctor in the early 1900s who had a patient whom he pronounced incurable. So she turned to Christian Science and had a complete healing. Inspired by this, Dr. Tutt also sought Christian Science treatment for a long standing illness, and, he too was cured. He was so inspired to have found the true method of healing, he went on to become a practitioner, CS Teacher, lecturer, and prolific writer. It was not unusual that ALL in his classes of 30 students would become Journal-listed practitioners and many of them, teachers themselves. We recently showed a film about the life of John Tutt at my church in Denver, put out by The Effulgence Foundation, who also do the wonderful DVDs for the Long Year Foundation. About 200 people attended and at one point, the presenter asked to see a show of hands of how many of their teachers were taught by Dr. Tutt. Nearly half of them raised their hands. Dr. Tutt wrote a lecture called “The Case Against Idolatry” in which he said: [quote]“Belief in the curative power of matter is inherent in mortal man in all the history of the human race. Through the centuries the gods of medicine have changed their form, but not their matter basis and false claims. In all the ages material medicine has been a false claimant to the healing and saving power of the Christ. The case of C.S. against material medicine calls for a proper reduction of disease to its falsely mental state. We need to know disease for what it actually is, an erroneous condition of thought, subject to correction with the truth. We should always remember that Science and Health declares unequivocally: “There is no disease.” (p. 421) This is a literal statement of truth to be taken literally. Then, if there is no disease, there is surely no cause of disease and no effects from it. One cannot believe in the material theories of disease without believing also in the material treatment.” [end of quote]
Years ago, I was making frequent visits to the dentist, as I seemed to have one pain after another in my mouth. After about my third or fourth visit within a year, the dentist said to me, “I don’t want to scare you, but I think you should be tested for diabetes.“ Boy, was that a wake up call. The practice of dentistry isn’t as simple as it used to be when I was a little girl. You used to get your teeth cleaned and off you’d go with a little prize! Now they do all sorts of tests and look for problems , recommending procedures to prevent conditions that may never arise. I told another Christian Scientist, to whom I was very close, what the dentist said. His response was not what I was looking for. He said to me, “You should take this seriously because you can die from diabetes.” While I was not afraid, I was alert to the fact that two persistent world beliefs …that diabetes was real and that it was life threatening, had to be handled for what they were…misstatements or misconceptions. Matter is an error of statement. They were not my beliefs because God knew nothing of them and I reflect and express only what God knows. Therefore, they were inherently powerless. I felt it wise, however, to take the other Christian Scientist’s dire prognosis (which is just another false idol) to a practitioner to affirm with her the truth of being. What she came back with was even more powerful than I had imagined it would be. I told her that he said I could die from this disease, and she immediately shot back, enough to startle me, “No one, in the history of the world, has ever died from a disease!! (as if she wassaying to me, “Wake up! Realize the fallacy of that statement!”) That mentally knocked me back on my heals as I contemplated and rejoiced over her bold statement. And then she gave the reason why….”Because there is NO disease.”, she concluded. Empirical evidence vs the Truth of being. That was the confirmation I was looking for….the immediate and unequivocal statement of truth about the utter unreality of disease and matter. And the constant flare-ups in my mouth disappeared and never came back. “There is no disease.” A literal statement to be taken literally.
The majority of the world does not believe they can heal like the Master did. They have discounted one of his commands that gives us access to his power: “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” (John 14:12)”He that believeth”, he said. Do we believe? I was reading about a very successful teacher in another field, a teacher who produced one student after another who surpassed him in skills, even though he was at the top of his game. An interviewer asked him if this bothered him, that so many of his students could perform better than he could. I loved his reply. Without hesitation he said, “Of course not! I would be a failure if I did not teach them to excel beyond what I am capable of doing. What would be the point of training people to be no better than I am, or worse? We want progress…to break barriers and limitations! If the student doesn’t surpass the teacher, the teacher has failed.” After reading that, I finally understood the importance of strivingto heal as the Master did, and to understand the nature of this gift he has given to all mankind. How often I have heard Christian Scientists speak of their teacher’s accomplishments as extraordinary or unattainable…and what Christ Jesus did as a thing of the past.
Admitting and declaring that we can heal as the Master did and even greater works, points to the infinite, ever-expanding nature of the healing truth about God and man. Have we fallen into the trap of believing that Jesus’ ability to heal was a special gift, which Mrs. Eddy clearly says it was not. “Christianity as Jesus taught it, was not a special gift from a ritualistic Jehovah.” She uses the term Jehovah 40 times in Science and Health and all have a negative connotation. It is a humanistic term that has not quite given place to the true knowledge of God.” , she says. We must embrace the infinite nature of the Christ as the inheritance and sonship that belongs to each one of us. Mrs. Eddy wrote to one of her students: Deny with all boldness that you cannot heal, for to admit it is dishonoring God, since He it is who heals, worketh through us, and we must see that we reflect Him – reflect the divine power.”
Starting with the premise that man is a material being, and then attempting to heal matter, could not be more different than the way Jesus healed ….in fact it is the complete opposite. Traditional medicine and even holistic medicine start with the premise that we are born into matter, subject to sickness and disease, and then die out of matter. Christian Science says we are never born and we never die, but are living our immortality now as the image and likeness of God. Human thought is expanding and the leaven of truth is at work, as evidenced by the number of physicists today who are coming to the understanding that life is independent of matter. Quantum physics has reduced what once seemed like solid matter to it’s smallest element …and still they can prove no underlying substance or mass. Many of them call it energy. Many are calling it ideas or thoughts. In fact, prominent physicists have concluded that the universe is comprised of nothing but thoughts or ideas….a wholly mental universe. They’re getting closer to the truth, but without the understanding that God, divine Mind, is the Creator of man and the universe, they will never fully get there. Listen to these profound declarations of our Leader made nearly a century and a half ago: “Matter disappears under the microscope of Spirit.”(S&H p. 264:1) “In metaphysics, matter disappears from the remedy entirely and Mind takes it rightful and supreme place.” (MW p. 156:28)
Jesus, the most scientific man who ever trod the globe, taught us to look deep into realism, instead of accepting only the outward appearance of things (empiricism.) His understanding of the true universe is infinitely above what scientists understand today and throughout the ages. In Misc. Writ we read, “ “…Christian Science has overshadowed all human philosophy, and being is understood in startling contradiction of human hypotheses; and Socrates, Plato, Kant, Locke, Berkeley, Tyndall, Darwin, and Spencer sit at the feet of Jesus.” (p. 361) Each and every one of us has the ability to overcome the belief in matter through the recognition and declaration that man is wholly spiritual, the conclusion to the Mrs. Eddy’s Scientific Statement of Being.
In one of his lectures, the C.S. lecturer Tom McElroy calls healing in CS an “inside job”. I like that term, and it’s an easy one to remember. We don’t change other people, situations or our bodies. We change our own thinking to an increased understanding of God. If you know God, you know yourself, because everything that is true about God is true about you….nothing more, nothing less than the All-in-all. He is the center and circumference of your being. You live, move and have your being in God. “Know thyself, and God will supply the wisdom and the occasion for a victory over evil. It is our ignorance of God, the divine Principle, which produces apparent discord, and the right understanding of Him restores harmony.” (p. 390:7) our Leader says.
A few years ago, my family including my children and grandchild were vacationing in the Bahamas at a lovely family resort. Each day I marveled at how happy and harmonious everyone was in this idyllic setting. Families playing and laughing together and enjoying everyone and everything around them. And then, the idyllic scene came to a screeching halt. A young girl seemed to have a seizure and fell and hit her head on the cement in front of hundreds of people. She lay lifeless on the ground for some time until some medics appeared and started to strap her to a gurney to take her away while her family agonized over her. We were standing with many others in a shallow wading pool watchingas the scene turned from one of joy, to fear and sadness. My daughter walked over to me and said, “Mom, can’t you do something about this?” As Christian Scientists, we inherently knew that this was a false picture of God’s man who is never subject to disease or accident. But I replied to my daughter that I cannot work for someone without their permission. But her plea was so heartfelt, so timely, that I told her I would pray to know what to do. Turning my thought wholeheartedly to God, I asked, ”Father, is there anything I can do in this situation to glorify you?” The answer was swift and loud in my consciousness. “YES!” So then I asked again, “Father, what do I need to know?” And just as swiftly and loudly came the answer, “Everything you know about Me, is true about her.” My heart soared with joy. I knew God to be infinite Mind, infinite consciousness and man as His perfect expression. The lesson that week was on Man, and I remembered this definition from the lesson: “Man is the conscious identity of being as found in Science in which man is the reflection of God or Mind, and therefore is eternal.” I rejoiced that this was true for all mankind.
(p. 475: 14) At that moment, as they were about to carry her away, her eyes opened and her fingers moved. Much to her family’s delight, she was unstrapped from the gurney and, acting as if nothing had happened, she went off with her family. To the degree that we know God, we know ourselves, and all of God’s creation. Perfect God and perfect man.
Let’s dispel a myth today, once and for all, that Christian Science doesn’t heal anymore….that it isn’t as effective as it used to be. Does Truth have an expiration date? Or, as the 1966 Time Magazine cover asked, “Is God Dead?” I hope you’re chuckling inside like I am. It’s one thing to think that…but when you actually say it outloud, you can hear how absurd it sounds. Has the principle of mathematics stopped working when your business fails or you get wrong answers when working a math problem? Do the laws of physics no longer work when a space ship fails to take off? Of course not. A principle is unchanging, eternal and knows nothing of errors. We cannot measure the success of Christian Science by looking at the success or failure of Christian Scientists in their healing efforts. Mrs. Eddy instructed us to look to Jesus as our only Ensample (article 8 sect 3 in our Church Manual) in other words, He is the ONLY example we follow and look to for guidance…our measuring stick to gauge the efficacy of Christ healing.….not other Christian Scientists. Because if they fall short, we feel Christian Science has fallen short…and that simply is not true. Christ Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Let us be alert not to adopt the world’s view of sickness and disease which are paraded in front us daily. You can’t send an email or go online, turn on the TV or radio without hearing or seeing a picture of a disease and the drug that is supposed to manage it, and includes a list of side effects, often more frightening than the so-called disease itself. This was true in Mrs. Eddy’s time as well. She says that these “long descriptions which mirror images of disease distinctly in thought, effect people like a Parisian garment. Everyone hastens to get it.” In the WSJ in April of this year, was an article called brain conformity. After many years of research, a neurologist reported: “In a study on conformity, subjects were asked an obvious question such as, “Here’s a line. Which of these three other lines is it closest to in length? And they would easily choose the right answer. Then this subject would be asked the same question while amid a group of others planted by the researchers. The other participants would unanimously pick a glaringly wrong answer. Stunningly, the first subject would agree with that incorrect answer up to three-quarters of the time. The researcher concludes, “When we stand apart from a group this way, we don’t just feel different and exposed, but distressingly wrong. People seek relief by conforming. “ Do we abandon the truths we have learned and go back to the ways of the world because we’re being judged by those around us and feel pressured to conform? Are we influenced by the ubiquitous messages of doom and gloom, or do we shut them out and listen only to the still small voice of Truth that “roareth like a lion”?
Once again, we can see the leaven of Truth expanding into many fields of medicine and science. Listen to what another neurologist says about his field. This is from the NYT in June of this year: “Trying to find out the biological origins of psychiatric disease leaves you with sand going through your hands. (what an apropos description when we think of the Adam man, supposedly created from the dust of the ground). He goes on, “I learned neuro science is totally wrong. They don’t believe “mind” exists. I think psychiatry has lost its mind literally and metaphysically. We are living in a time of a huge existential crisis. “
Dr. Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief of the Lancet Magazine (a medical magazine which dates back to Mrs. Eddy’s time) recently said, “Much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness”. Also, Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician who was longtime Editor-in-Chief of the New England Journal of Medicine said, “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor at the New England Journal of Medicine.” Bruce Lipton, PhD and stem cell biologist says, “Before we blame the cells, we must first look at our thoughts, our beliefs and our behaviors because these are more important than the genes. When we change our thoughts, behaviors, and beliefs, we can change our biology. We are the masters of our lives, not the victim of our genes.”
The last article I want to refer to, was entitled, “The patient wants to leave, but the answer is NO.”…so powerful are doctors, and administrators these days, from the New York Times this summer. A C.S. practitioner and teacher, who also happened to have a law degree, had first hand experience with what this article was claiming. But without flinching, she stood her ground for months until she won. Here is what happened: A woman was admitted to a hospital against her will, by her family who are not Christian Scientists. After 6 months of trying to get out and getting moved to three different facilities, the practitioner whom I mentioned was contacted to take the case. Because the family could not keep their mother in the hospital against her will, they had to claim she was not of sound mind (not unlike what happened to Mrs. Eddy) and so the Health Care Proxy took effect against her will. They transferred her to the mental ward, to support their claim. She was given medicine and drugs which she would throw out at every available opportunity. The nurses were on her side and knew she was of perfectly sound mind, but the administrator of this hospital, that had their own police station across the street, was adamant about keeping her there. The law was on the side of the patient all along, but the administrator said “we have our own rules. ” Because of the practitioner’s efforts to free the woman on legal grounds, the hospital decided to bring a suit against the woman in order to prove that she was not of sound mind. But all things were working together for good! At the court hearing to prove her mental incompetence, at which the Administrator, family members and psychiatrist were all present to testify against her, the practitioner made the case for the woman to be released and sent to the Christian Science Nursing Home which was just one mile away! The administrator kept jumping up and objecting to anything the practitioner said in court. Finally the Judge said, “No…I want to hear this. And then he let her speak for two hours about Christian Science healing. Sometimes, we don’t understand why we are going through a challenge. But we can always declare God to be in control and that all things are working together for good, as evidenced by the landmark victory! The judge asked for a copy of Science and Health when the hearing was over. He also accepted a copy of the book, “The Soul of Medicine: Spiritual Perspectives and Clinical Practice” which explores the spiritual aspect of healing for all religions; and it includes a chapter on Christian Science, whose author happened to be the practitioner on this case. This book, put out by Harvard Medical School, says that patient satisfaction and physician morale have both declined significantly, sending nearly half the population to explore the spiritual dimensions ofhealing.” …once again showing the leaven of truth at work. The Judge ruled in favor of the patient being released immediately. Her legs had so improved from the time CS treatment had begun, that the therapist asked, what drugs have you been taken that your legs look so much better? She assured him it was nothing but the CS treatment that had healed her legs. They asked her if she wanted an ambulance to take her to the CS nursing facility, but she and her practitioner assured them it was not needed. She walked to the car. This woman stayed at the nearby C.S. nursing facility for just a few weeks and then transferred down to 10 Acres in Princeton NJ where she got her own apartment with no more nursing care, and is, to this day, fully active. Note how quickly this woman progressed when removed from the thought that saw her as a sick mortal needing endless drugs for relief, and placed in an atmosphere of love where following the teachings of Christ Jesus through Mrs. Eddy’s discovery of the Comforter were obeyed and revered. “Spirituality lays open siege to materialism. On which side are we fighting?” our Leader asks. (p. 216)
I heard someone define faith as stepping off a cliff, and knowing that either there will be solid ground beneath your feet, or you will grow wings to fly. Or as St. Paul told us, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Heb 11:1) “For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?” But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” (Rom 8:24) Where does this great faith, this confidence in a purely spiritual method of healing come from that we will all embrace one day? Mrs. Eddy used the words “sooner or later” fourteen times in her writings to indicate that all must come to the realization of the Christ as the only healing and saving power. “Sooner or later…she says, “all shall know Him, recognize the great truth that Spirit is infinite, and find life in Him in whom we do live and move and have out being.” (CS vs Pantheism p. 13: 18-24) Doesn’t our faith come from Jesus’ examples of healing in the Bible and his promise to us? Only twelve recorded healings are cited in the Old Testament which covers 4,000 years. Jesus’ healings in the New Testament numbered more than that in a single day. Can you imagine what it must have been like for the disciples to watch one healing after another, day in and day out for 3 years and then to know that Jesus was about to leave them. But he left them, and us, with this promise, “Let not our heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s House are many mansions. I go to prepare a place for you. Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life; I will not leave you comfortless. I will come to you.” (John 14: 1-6, 18) “And O’er earth’s troubled angry sea, I see Christ walk, and come to me, and tenderly, divinely talk.” This comforter, we know to be, Divine Science.
Mrs. Eddy provided so many aids and supports for us on our journey Spiritward, as we learn to heal and see as the Master did….from our daily lesson sermons, to practitioners , class teaching and CS nursing. I love the fact that Mrs. Eddy had already written the Manual when she realized she had left some things out. One of them was Christian Science Nursing. She was divinely led to include this inspired idea. Today, every Christian Science nurse and nursing institution can and should feel the full import of that divine mandate…know that it was revealed to Mrs. Eddy that Christian Science Nurses are an integral support to the role of healing in Christian Science. Every Christian Scientist should be supporting all Manual activities in their daily prayers, to know that Mrs. Eddy’s provisions will be successful in meeting the needs of Christian Scientists.
I had a dramatic demonstration of the supportive and healing power of Christian Science Nursing with one of my patients. This patient seemed to have some mental challenges; but that didn’t keep her from serving in church or from being mother to a lovely family of two children along with her husband. But one day she seemed to have a lapse and left her son alone in a store. Child services eventually came and got him, but her punishment by the state was severe. They gave her a choice of going to jail for negligence or being put on drugs to temper her behavior. She couldn’t imagine going to jail and having that stigma on her record, so she agreed to being watched over by the state and administered drugs. One day after a church service she came up to me, hair disheveled and looking crazed and grabbed my arm saying, you’ve got to help me get off these drugs…their ruining my life! My heart soared with joy. With a big smile on my face I assured her that she was reaching out to God and God would answer, reminding her of this Bible passage: ”Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Matt 7:7-8) We both agreed she needed to be moved to a CS Nursing Facility which was not far from her home. However, this still left her under social services jurisdiction, and they would not allow her to dispense with the drugs, so the CS Nursing Facility cound not admit her. So we looked in another state and found a C.S. Facility that was happy to receive her. While the thought of being so far from her family was difficult, she gladly accepted, knowing the healing was assured.
Let’s pause here for a moment to understand why my patient and I knew the healing was assured. In short, because the Scriptures say so…because God says so, because the ever-presence of the healing Christ says so. The word of God never returns void, but accomplishes that which God pleases. It it our job to DECLARE this great truth, just as we had done in church on the day she reached out to me. We declared that she asked for healing, and therefore she would receive it. Think of the examples we have in the Bible of the power of declaring the truth, or as it says in Isaiah, “declare the end from the begnining.” “I am God and there is none else; I am God and there is none like me. Declaring the end from the beginning…saying my counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.” As Moses crossed the dessert with the Children of Israel whom he had just saved from slavery in Egypt, they rebelled against him because they had run out of water and were sure they would die. They were still living their lives based on empirical evidence. But Moses knew better and saved them yet again when they came to a well that had dried up. He prayed to God, knowing God supplied all good, and God assured them of water if they would only pour out their gratitude by singing to the well and asking it to spring up!. And the well produced water, as God had promised. Before David faced Goliath, he declared, “The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. This day will the Lord deliver you into mine hands.” (I Sam 17:37, 46) And his defeat of Goliath is one of the most loved stories world wide. King Darius was forced to send Daniel, whom he loved, into the lion’s den because he had been tricked. But as he did, he declared the end from the beginning saying: “Thy God whom thou servest continually, he will deliver thee.” (Dan 6:16) And Daniel was not harmed. After Paul and Silas has been beaten, put into an inner prison and their feet shackled, they sang so loudly that the other prisoners heard them. What do you think they were singing….”We’ve done nothing but good and served you, Oh God. Why did you let this happen to us? What did we do wrong. Why are people so mean and terrible?” Of course not! Paul knew that “All things work together for good, to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” Paul and Silas were singing praises unto God, and the walls of the prison came down….because Paul trusted in God’s love. He didn’t even escape, so as not to get the jail keeper in trouble. But the guards were so impressed that they let him go and the jailer followed him and became a Christian. Perhaps one of the greatest examples of declaring the end from the beginning was the Shunamite woman in II Kings. This barren woman had been promised, and was delivered a son according to the word of the prophet Elisha. In this week’s lesson, the word prophet is defined as a spiritual seer, disappearance of material sense before the conscious facts of spiritual Truth. …just what we’ve been talking about today, disbelieving what we see with our eyes (empiricism) and embracing what we know in our hearts! We should all strive to be prophets and see-ers! So the Shunamite woman had a son, but then one day the child died in her arms. Did she say, “I knew it – God is not all powerful and the prophet didn’t know what he was talking about?” No…..when empirical evidence challenged the great thinkers in the Bible, they used it as an opportunity to go up higher. I’m not saying it’s easy…..since when was anything easy worthwhile?! It takes great faith, love and spiritual courage. But we each have all of those qualities inherent on our being! Elisha heard that the boy had died, and sent a messenger to her asking, “Is it well with thee? Is it well with thy husband? Is it well with thy son? And she answered, “It is well.” Such faith! Declarations of the truth are imperative. Our Leader says, “In Science, a denial of truth is fatal, while a just acknowledgement of Truth and what it has done for us, is an effectual help.” (S&H 372: 26)
So back to our story, this precious, faith-filled woman was admitted to a facility half way across the country and she was there for a few months. The patience, kindness, love, confidence shown to her touched me very deeply and made my work as a practitioner, a joy. She was surrounded by Christian Science nurses whose sole aim it was to see her as nothing less than the perfect expression of a perfect God, while being cheerful, patient, full of faith, and receptive to Truth and Love, the qualities of a nurse thatMrs. Eddy outlines in S&H, the qualities that I know each Olive Glen nurse strives to express to each and every one of you staying in this blessed facility. The State kept visiting her home and asking her husband where she was, because it was their job to protect her son and monitor her behavior. He told them she had chosen treatment outside of the state and gave them my name as her practitioner. They quickly called me to say they strongly objected, but by the end of the call they had completely changed their minds because of the confidence I exuded in Christian Science treatment, and I assured them there would be a healing. They marveled at my faith, and said she was in good hands. I was most grateful for this recognition and for this acknowledgement of our faith and for the release of their thinking over her. Their only stipulation was that as soon as she returned home again, they would need to confirm her healing so they could sign off on the case, which of course I said I would agree to when the time came. In this atmosphere of Love, which is what a Christian Science Nursing Home essentially provides, she had her complete healing and returned home after several months, was able to get a job, and was given a clean bill of health by the State and taken off their radar. It’s not that this woman went from being deranged to being clear-minded over a two month period. She was already the perfection image of a perfect God, and the illusion of any other claim over her true being simply disappeared in the presence of the Christ, Truth.
In Christian Science, healing is not an event. It does not take place over a certain amount of time. It doesn’t happen on, around or through a body….in fact, it doesn’t involve matter at all….well matter or sick matter, because there is no matter. C.S. never fails because it declares what already exists – perfect God and perfect man, (that’s why we can declare the end from the beginning). It doesn’t work towards a point of completion or perfection. It starts there and proves its supremacy. Perfect God and perfect man is the basis of our thought and demonstration. Healing is a moment of realization. You’ve probably heard people say, “It’s a revealing, not a healing.”…so true! It is the touching of the hem of Christ’s garment. It is a process of seeing – “We must look deep into realism instead of accepting only the outward sense of things. (useless empiricism) (S&H p. 129:22-24) It is the operation of God’s law which never changes and never fails. Healing starts with God and ends with God, the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last…the Only. It is a release of false beliefs which disappear before the light of Truth….in other words…a decision….a change of consciousness that opens our eyes to reality…the reality that matter does not exist. All is Spirit and spiritual. “Deny the existence of matter, and you can destroy the belief in material conditions.” says our Leader. (S&H p. 368:29-31)
It’s not easy to grasp the fact that matter does not exist when we seem to live in the flesh. But that is precisely what we must do! Reject empiricism and accept spiritual truth. Mrs. Eddy received a note from a woman saying she had been corrected by a practitioner, nonetheless, for referring to herself as an immortal idea of the one divine Mind. The practitioner told her the statement was wrong because she still lived in her flesh. The woman boldly replied to the practitioner that she did not live in the flesh, but that her flesh lived or died according to the beliefs she entertained about it; and that after coming to this Truth, she had found that she lived, moved and had her being in God, and that to obey Christ was not to know as real the beliefs of an earthly mortal. Mrs. Eddy wholeheartedly agreed with the woman, not the practitioner, and the woman then pleaded with Mrs. Eddy to share this truth in the Sentinel which Mrs. Eddy did in 1910 (and it can also be found in Miscellany p. 242). “You are scientifically correct in your statement about yourself. You can never demonstrate spirituality until you declare yourself to be immortal and understand the you are so. Christian Science is absolute; It is neither behind the point of perfection nor advancing towards it. It is at this point and must be practiced therefrom. Unless you fully perceive that you are the child of God, hence perfect, you have no Principle to demonstrate and no rule for its demonstration.”
St. Paul said, “Your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” And our Leader said, “Be allied to the Deific power, and all that is good will aid your journey. Hourly in Christian Science, man thus weds himself with God, or rather ratifies a union predestined from all eternity.” (Un. p. 17). Let us all take the stand our Leader took when she said: “The testimony of the material senses is neither absolute nor divine. I therefore plant myself unreservedly on the teaching of Jesus, of his apostles, of the prophets, and on the testimony of the Science of Mind. Other foundations there are none. “ (S&H p. 269:21-25) The Christ truth IS the universal and perfect remedy!