Checking out 'A second look at testimonies'
I have turned to the testimonies mentioned in the “Check It Out” section of the website a number of times. The three that came out in the first sampling from the 1972 CS Sentinel have been a real beacon. The most recent sharing from the 1/7/13 Sentinel were also so helpful. Something that was mentioned when this new section of the website was introduced that has stayed with me, and I have seen the proof in my experience. This thought that, yes, testimonies are so lovely to hear the first time for their beauty and grace that comes with the healing, but that turning back to them gives us the opportunity to see the deeper lessons, the specific truths that were trusted, and the application to our own lives.
In recent months I have turned to a collection of CS Sentinels that I have copies of here in the home. They happen to be from 1975. The year doesn’t really matter, but I have grown to love their contents. I have the copies loose-bound; they aren’t in a “bound” volume collection. They are sprinkled with their colorful covers throughout the house alongside the new publications that arrive at the door. There was one copy that served as a real beacon when I was having trouble with a particular relationship that seemed difficult, and also during a time when a long-standing friend and I had some difficult words back and forth. I had talked with a practitioner and she reminded me of the familiar passage in Science and Health (266:6): “Will existence without personal friends be to you a blank? And further on: “Friends will betray and enemies will slander…” she reminded me as this sentence reads, that these experiences exalt us. And it has. But what was significant was opening a Sentinel to the testimonies one evening when I felt the saddest with the whole situation and one of the testimonies in that sweet Sentinelbegan with that familiar phrase noted above, “Would existence without personal friends be to you a blank?” The whole testimony was devoted to this idea of true companionship written from the vantage point of a college student and it spoke volumes to me. It came at the exact right time, and was turned to repeatedly for a number of weeks, until I really gained a maturing in my sense of friendship and companionship with others, and seeing ultimately how God is our true best friend. I loved that this stranger in the Sentinel, and the healing account that was shared became a trusted resource for some time.
I have loved gaining a deeper appreciation for the periodicals and testimonies in particular. I love that I can keep turning and turning to them for help and support. I continue to be grateful for Mrs. Eddy’s love for her dear Church and the hard work she so unselfishly did to provide us with so many avenues to feel God’s love and care, including the provision for Association.