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In the presence of Love

From the March 2016 issue of The Christian Science Journal

 One recent day, as I considered all the healings I’ve experienced and witnessed through the practice of Christian Science, I noticed quite vividly a common denominator to them all. Each and every case, no matter what the trouble seemed to be, was primarily the result of believing the lie that man could be separated from God’s love. And every healing came at a point of fresh understanding of the eternal presence of divine Love, and man’s true identity as the expression of Love, forever one with God.

God, who is the divine Love that fills all space, leaves no room for anything unlike Love to be present anywhere. Although unhappy human experiences would seem to contradict this truth, we can still perceive through our spiritual sense the omnipresence of God, who is all good, and see practical evidence of it in our lives by healing what is unhappy. 

Early on in my study of Christian Science, the validity of its teachings, including the omnipresence of Love, was proved to me through many profound healings. The notion that evil is unreal was confirmed through demonstrations of the reality of God, good, which came to light as the result of consecrated prayer and gaining spiritual understanding. These healings proved to me that God’s love is the only real power governing our lives. 

Over the many years since I became a student of Christian Science, God’s infinite love has gradually grown larger to my understanding, and my belief in the assumed power of the illusion of evil has grown smaller and smaller. I have been learning something of what Mary Baker Eddy wrote: “The Scripture pronounces all that God made ‘good;’ therefore if evil exists, it exists without God. But this is impossible in reality, for He made all ‘that was made.’ Hence the inevitable revelation of Christian Science—that evil is unreal; and this is the best of it” (The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, p. 178). 

I have been learning, too, that when Christ Jesus healed people, he was proving the unreality of evil; he was removing whatever evil claim was trying to interfere with their God-given usefulness and individuality. He proved the truth that man has a useful purpose as God’s reflection, and that man’s holy purpose cannot be hindered by any belief of evil.

God is always 
communicating His all-powerful and perpetual love,
and I wanted to feel more of it and be receptive to it.

I was introduced to Christian Science by some new friends when I was in my early thirties. It was at a time when I was yearning to get free of a dangerous marriage. When I first met these friends, I didn’t know what their religion was, but I just knew I felt safe when I was with them. My friends shared some comforting ideas about how God is always with me, and how He is always present to heal, protect, and guide us. Strengthened by my new understanding of God’s love, I left the marriage.

Soon after the divorce was finalized, our baby daughter drowned in an accident in the swimming pool at our house. I was devastated. I had a six-year-old son at the time, and I wanted a bright future for him and me, but I did not know how to get free of what felt like the worst grief a person could feel. My Christian Science friends were kind and tender to me, but even more than that, I noticed they were calm in the face of tragedy. They assured me that in spite of what had happened, God’s love and presence would lift me out of the dark place I was in. 

One night, weary of grief, I decided that if God, Love, was truly present, I was ready to feel His presence and prove it. My prayer was, “Please, God, lift this grief from me so that I can be a useful, cheerful presence in the world.” My prayer was more than just a request. It was really a response to God’s ever-present, unconditional love that He was bestowing on me and all. God is always communicating His all-powerful and perpetual love, and I wanted to feel more of it and be receptive to it. In what seemed a most dark hour, I felt the message of the Christ, God’s spiritual idea embracing humanity, letting me know that in reality nothing had changed. God’s love had never been stolen from me or my daughter. We were both forever inseparable from Him, and nothing could silence His voice or make me feel deprived of heavenly grace. 

I awoke from sleep in the middle of the night, and I just knew I would never grieve so helplessly for my daughter again; and I can honestly say that I never have. The anguish was totally replaced by a sweet and certain peace—the perception of God’s infinite love and presence. That’s when I knew that God was with me, because only God could have done such an amazing thing.

This healing of grief gave me such a profound sense of connection to God that I was left with the confidence to pursue a career in the public ministry of Christian Science healing. I figured that if God could do such a wonderful thing for me, He must be able to do many wonderful things for others, and I wanted to help people feel the realness of divine Love that is with us always. 

Christian Science shows us how an understanding of divine Love brings healing to the human experience, and reveals our dominion, as the perfect image and likeness of God, over destructive material beliefs. Troubles and sorrows vanish as we understand and yield to the ever-presence of all-embracing divine Love, proving the truth that God created all, and His spiritual creation is purely good.

In Christian Science, we heal what appear to be evil conditions by praying to open our thought wider to the truth of the uninterrupted power and presence of God as Love. Through this spiritual understanding and transformation of thought, we are able to prove that the eminent grace of Soul, God, really does govern our experience.

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