I have taken literally months to read We Knew Mary Baker Eddy, Vol. II because I have found so much to absorb and to learn. I have marked so many places that I’ve read and reread. I’ve used ideas from it in personal conversations, at branch church business meetings, in testimonies, and I’ve also shared thoughts from it with friends who aren’t Christian Scientists. Most of all, I have taken to heart the example that these dedicated workers have given to me and to all of us who profess the name, Christian Scientist.
It’s become kind of cliché to say, I’ve been humbled, but I don’t know any other way to describe how “wimpy” these accounts have made me feel regarding my own practice of Christian Science. I have imagined that I am dedicating myself to it every day in that I think about God, try to feel His presence in my daily life, apply the principles and ideas I know of Christian Science to all kinds of situations, from my healing needs, to those of my family and friends, to random things I see around me like homeless people on the streets, car accidents I encounter, sirens I hear, etc.
However, I am now asking myself, would Mrs. Eddy ever ask me to be part of her household, to be one of her workers, watchers, maids, cooks, or to have anything to do with her at the level I am working? Even if she asked me to come, would I be one of the ones she sent home? Could I have withstood her rebukes with the impersonal love with which they were given? These are the questions this book brought up to me. When I read how Mrs. Eddy admonished her workers when results weren’t immediate, I know I need to raise the bar on my expectation of immediate healing. When she says, never say “try,” I know I need to stop trying and engage more fully and honestly in doing.
Although these accounts were written over 100 years ago in many cases, I felt very present and admonished and encouraged and loved and scolded and instructed and inspired right along with all these workers Mrs. Eddy was speaking to.
As far as my current healing practice this year has gone, I am grateful for some healings I have had and witnessed. My whole house has been quite free of colds and illness this year, and when illness has appeared, I have been much quicker at the door of thought to keep it out and to do it more simply and strongly. I have realized the value of not acquiescing for even a moment to suggestions of inharmony in whatever form. Also, the immediacy of the response seems to be commensurate with the immediacy of the healing in these cases.
I have grown in trusting the all-goodness and all-Love of God and feel like I’ve taken a step closer to understanding the simple Allness of God Himself that precludes and denies and voids anything unlike Himself. I’ve also been consulting more regularly with God and asking more of what I can do for Him rather than the other way around. As William Rathvon quoted Mrs. Eddy: “Not so much what God does for us as what He is.” (p. 544) I’ve begun to know that along with all the reading we can do in Christian Science—Lesson, periodicals, etc., that’s not the same as praying. So I’ve been devoting more time to actual deep prayer rather than just thinking and reading and thinking about what I’ve read.
The latest healing I witnessed was recently when my sales manager told me she had had a mammogram that came back with a problem her doctor wanted to investigate further. She said a biopsy was going to be required on a spot that was detected. I waited a moment to feel the Christ present. I then asked if she would like me to share a thought with her. She did. I told her an analogy that a practitioner had included in his lecture about a shaft of light being unchangeable because its source, the sun, doesn’t change. You can scream at it, try to slice it with a knife, try to box it up, but nothing can happen to it. Analogous to us, God’s ideas, and our source, God. She said she liked that and got it. She told me that this biopsy was coming up on Thursday and asked if I’d pray. I assured her I’d love to. I woke up at 4:30 that morning with a clear prayer about man’s purity, unassailability, unchangeableness, goodness, and God’s Allness—all good, all Love that would preclude any interference or marring or intrusion on His own dear idea. This past week she told me the result of the biopsy was negative and she thanked me for my prayers. Wow!