I was happy to read Lulu Blackman’s account of unexpectedly praying for someone when she felt she was unprepared to do so. She felt she didn’t yet have sufficient understanding, but obedience and love opened her eyes to the power of Truth and carried the day. I wish I could report such a decisive example of instantaneously healing others. Yet I do feel that a recent experience built on my desire to put into practice my understanding of Christian Science and to be of help to others.
One day when I was working, a large dog suddenly ran toward me and bit me in the stomach. I confess, initially I felt shocked and in pain, not knowing what to do. Should I call the police? I was worried that if I reported the incident, I would have a lot of predictions placed on me and that my employer would urge me to go to a hospital, have stitches, rabies shots, etc.
I called a family member, and one thing she said stood out to me: When things involving other people and institutions seem complex and she doesn’t know what to do, she often finds the Golden Rule very useful in pointing toward the steps to take.
I liked the idea of thinking of others, instead of just my own predicament, pain, and possible consequences. From the standpoint of the Golden Rule, I reasoned that if I were a parent with a little child, and if there were a dog in the neighborhood that attacked a person, I would really hope that someone would report the attack.
I called the police and went with them to make a report. While there, I was urged to go to the emergency room and so forth. But by then I was feeling calmer, which I think helped others to feel calm when I declined medical attention.
Many blessings arose out of this. I experienced calmness and healing—I went to work the next day and the pain and the wound were soon healed. I became less fearful about interacting with others when I say I am a Christian Scientist and decline medical attention. I also overcame a temptation to be skittish around dogs after the encounter.
The way things worked out was a blessing to the neighborhood, to the dog owner, and even to the dog. The police took the attack very seriously, but instead of putting the dog down, they placed it in quarantine for rabies. Some weeks later, the police contacted me, saying that the dog had not been found to have rabies. The police did not return the dog until its owner agreed to keep it restrained at all times. I was grateful for this quiet resolution, which helped the owner to be a better owner and spared the dog.