ONE AFTERNOON LAST APRIL, I pulled into the parking lot of a convenience store and began to get out of the car when a man approached me. He had a knife and forced himself into my car, making me switch to the passenger's seat. He wanted money, but I quietly told him I had none, and he became quite angry. He grabbed my shirt and pushed the knife into my side several times, but the knife seemed dull to me and didn't inflict any pain.
All my life, I've read Bible stories of God's unrivaled authority—of Him closing the mouths of lions and rescuing the young Hebrew men from the fiery furnace—but never before had I felt so awesomely God's protective care. While I was in the car with this man, I recognized the severity of the situation, but I can honestly say that I was not afraid. I somehow knew the redeeming power of divine Love would keep me safe, and I wanted him to feel that Love, as well.
As I think back on this experience, it reminds me of Mary Baker Eddy's reference in Science and Health to the Revelator's vision of "a new heaven and a new earth." She asked: "Have you ever pictured this heaven and earth, inhabited by beings under the control of supreme wisdom?" (p. 91). I like to think I got a glimpse of that new heaven and earth in the car, because I had this peaceful sense that both the man and I were governed by divine Love, rather than by fear or some evil motive.