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From the August 2010 issue of The Christian Science Journal

LAST SUMMER, I had been doing a lot of physical labor and running a few miles each morning with our new dog. One day, I noticed that my hip was starting to hurt. Although I prayed about it shortly and went about my day, I didn't feel I had enough time to stop and address the situation further in prayer. As the day progressed, I felt I should stop working, but because I owned a small business, I didn't think taking a day off to pray seemed practical. Instead, I took a quiet moment to think about what I had learned in Christian Science.

Throughout my study of Christian Science, I have learned that all obstacles are mental and that the material or physical challenges we face are really incorrect perceptions of ourselves and the world in which we live. The Bible teaches that God made us in His likeness and made everything good. This passage comes right at the beginning of the Bible.

I started to reason along these lines and knew that I did not have to give in to what the material senses were saying about my body. I knew I had a choice. I could listen to what my body was telling me or listen to God. I figured that if God made me, I had better listen to what He was saying and stick to that as my reality.

I started to pray, knowing that my true identity was in God, Spirit. I knew that if this was true, I did not have to take time off work, stop running with my dog, or stop participating in any of the physical activities that brought such joy and happiness to my life. I felt sure that this prayer would do the job, so I kept on with my normal routine for the next few days.

Unfortunately, the situation seemed to get worse. Thoughts of fear entangled my mind, and I started to worry about not having the ability to do my job, play with my dog, support my family, or have an active life. Thoughts came to me of a car accident I had been involved in years earlier, and I felt this hip pain might have been an outcome of this accident. I was enshrouded by doubt. I thought about calling a Christian Science practitioner to pray with me, but I really felt I could pray for myself. I thought about how a practitioner would pray, and knew that I could pray that way, too.

I recalled a healing our family had a few weeks earlier. My wife and I had called a practitioner to help us pray for our dog, who had been bitten by another dog. When we took our dog to the vet, they said he would need at least a week and a half of medication to combat an infection. After we called a practitioner to pray for us, our dog was completely healed in two days. This gave me the conviction that I could be healed, too. I was really striving to understand God, and I knew that this yearning would help me understand whatever I needed to know to witness this healing.

I started praying with great fervency. As I was praying, I completely let go of the idea of me trying to heal anything. I realized that it was God that does it all and what I really needed to do was to surrender my will to His. I did. I let go and asked God what to do. The thought then came to me that there were hundreds if not thousands of people who had been healed simply by reading Science and Health, and that this book contained the ideas I needed to change the way I was seeing myself.

I picked up the book and let it fall open. My eyes dropped to the page, and I began to read the first passage I saw: "Matter does not express Spirit. God is infinite omnipresent Spirit. If Spirit is all and is everywhere, what and where is matter? Remember that truth is greater than error, and we cannot put the greater into the less. Soul is Spirit, and Spirit is greater than body. If Spirit were once within the body, Spirit would be finite, and therefore could not be Spirit" (Science and Health, p. 223).

I understood this passage to mean that I did not live in a material body, but that my actual being was spiritual and could never be harmed. I remembered that as soon as I had realized our puppy was not a material object who needed healing, but that he was a spiritual idea that had never been harmed, his healing took place. I knew that I could also expect a healing because I wasn't a material object. Just like our puppy, I was a spiritual idea that was never harmed.

I saw that my real being was not in a material body that was subject to being overworked, strained, in an accident, or out of place. I knew this was the truth about my being and rejoiced in it right there on the couch. The mental shift I was looking for had taken place immediately, and by the next morning all pain in my hip was gone.

Mary Baker Eddy writes, "It has been demonstrated to me that Life is God ..." (Science and Health, p. 193). When I saw my life in and of God, I was healed. Since this healing, the hip pain has never returned. I am so grateful for this spiritual healthcare system brought to light by Mrs. Eddy, and for her fearless stance against the error in human thought.

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