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Praying for our unborn child

From the March 2011 issue of The Christian Science Journal

In the opinion of many, the effects of mothers on children begin when a child is born. However, new research indicates that what happens during pregnancy can have a profound effect on children. A recent Time magazine article, “How the First Nine Months Shape the Rest of Your Life” (September 22, 2010), discusses current research on the effect of maternal thoughts and feelings on the prenatal development of children: “. . . scientists are exploring the possibility that intrauterine conditions influence not only our physical health but also our intelligence, temperament, even our sanity.”

Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, knew how important a mother’s thought is to her unborn child. Through her prayer and practice, she discerned the relationship between the quality of a mother’s thought and the well-being of her child. In Science and Health, she wrote: “A mother is the strongest educator, either for or against crime. Her thoughts form the embryo of another mortal mind, and unconsciously mould it, either after a model odious to herself or through divine influence, ‘according to the pattern showed to thee in the mount’” (p. 236); and, “The offspring of heavenly-minded parents inherit more intellect, better balanced minds, and sounder constitutions” (p. 61).

When my husband and I were expecting our first child, I took Mrs. Eddy’s counsel very seriously. I had been studying Christian Science for over ten years when I became pregnant. Because of the many healings I had experienced through prayer in Christian Science, I trusted and followed the inspired ideas I was studying in the Bible and Science and Health. I prayed deeply. I loved this precious child with all my heart and wanted to do everything I could to support it. I recognized my responsibility and conscientiously tried to keep my thought uplifted, loving, pure, and spiritually-minded. I knew I wasn’t personally creating a perfect child. Instead, I was witnessing the manifestation of God’s child, who has always coexisted with Him. My job was to focus on the perfection of God and His idea, not allowing material misconceptions to obscure this expression. 

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