One day this past summer, I was carrying my son down a small flight of stairs. On the last step, my shoe slipped and I stepped down awkwardly on my ankle and felt it crack. I began to experience pain; however, my first instinct was to protect my son, so I managed to stay upright instead of falling.
I immediately kept walking, slowly, but the pain increased. I felt that I had two options. As a practicing Christian Scientist, I am used to turning prayerfully to God for any answer I need, so I was not surprised that the first thought I had was that I could pray and find freedom from this accident. Another quieter thought came as well: I could reject the notion of having fallen in the first place, and continue rejoicing unceasingly in the spiritual unfoldment of the day, which had been filled with prayer for others and the world, and this prayer did not need to be interrupted by fear.
I was reminded of Moses’ entreaty to the children of Israel to choose whom they would serve: life, or death (see Deuteronomy 30:19). While that choice may seem a little extreme, I saw that in this moment, by choosing to accept a material reality where accidents can happen, or to stick with my previous standpoint of rejoicing ceaselessly in God’s omnipotent love and care for His spiritual idea, man, I was essentially choosing either an experience full of starts and stops, subject to swinging back and forth between good and bad and prone to accident and chance, or choosing the continuity and omnipotence of divine Life, which I have learned through my study of Christian Science to be a synonym for God.