Wednesday, April 29, 2009

prayering about flu and contagion

Our phone rang late last night with a message from the school district announcing that all schools would be closed immediately and for the next ten days to deal with the spreading of 'swine flu'. Turning to this week's Bible lesson, I found so many helpful references to pray with: from the Bible...It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed...for He will not afflict willingly nor grieve the children of men...none of them who trust in Him will be desolate... And from Mrs. Eddy's writings...let us labor to dissolve with the universal solvent of Love the adamant of error...the divine must overcome the human at every point...God is everywhere and nothing apart from Him is present or has power...then one disease would be as readily destroyed as another...disease must lose its reality in human consciousness and disappear...Love sends forth Her everlasting strain...

From an article...if your friend believed in ghosts and his heart beat faster and he had nightmares - you, not believing in ghosts, would have no fear of 'catching' his symptoms, however real they might seem.

Another thought - when a cat and a dog meet unexpectedly the cat arches its back. You would not pray about the cat having curvature of the spine, you would simply calm its fear. For more ideas to pray with for yourself, your loved ones and your community in connection with this topic, go to and read "Freedom from swine flu through God's care".

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

turn that procession around

In this week's Bible lesson, Doctrine of Atonement, there is a touching and powerful scene. Jesus and his disciples, along with a crowd of those seeking to hear him and those clamoring for healing, came to the city of Nain. As they approached the gates, a sad sight appeared. A funeral procession. Jews did not bury their dead within the walls of a city. A young man, the only son of his mother, had died. She was already widowed and was now without protection and provision. A large number of people accompanied her on this sad walk. So two great crowds of people were able to converge and witness this event.

When Jesus saw her, he instantly knew her situation and had compassion for her. He speaks to her these words of comfort, "weep not". I'm sure many had tried to comfort her but his words held a much different meaning. Having addressed her, he now touched the bier and those bearing it stopped. Imagine the astonishment of those around him when he said to the young man, "Young man, I say unto thee, Arise". But that was nothing compared to their amazement when the young man, who all had accepted as dead, sat up and began to speak. Jesus had already raised many from beds of infirmity and pain, now he raised this young man from a funeral bier. To complete the healing, he delivers him to his mother. One can only imagine her reaction.

And with these few words and actions, Jesus completely reversed that procession leaving the city in sorrow and mourning to one of happiness and rejoicing. Surely, when he said 'arise' it rippled out to all of those present. They felt awe and wonder and word spread that a great prophet was among them. God had visited His people. Not just a prophet, but a great prophet for in their whole history only Elijah and Elishas had revived the dead. A long period of silence in the form of prophecy now came to a close. No prophets had appeared for centuries. So this story spread quickly throughout all Judea and all the region round about.

What I love about this is how the Christ completely reversed what appeared to be consuming everyone. That is how Christian Science operates. Use it with whatever grief or sadness or illness is causing you to feel like you are in a long walk of depression. Weep not. Stand still, stop moving forward with your problem. Don't continue down that path. Listen for the Christ telling you to arise, lift up your thought, see things differently. Be delivered whole and well and happy back to those who love you. No hands were needed to help that young man, he sat up on his own. No period of getting over whatever had caused him to die, he was able to speak normally. The problem had vanished. Health was restored. That procession turned around and went back into the city with a totally different feeling. You can do the same. Today.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Nothing can 'plague' you

This week's Bible lesson asks what appears to be a simple question but we cannot take it lightly. Are sin, disease and death real? Well, they certainly seem real. This is a natural follow up to the previous Bible lesson topics, Reality and Unreality. What is real to you? What is your reality based upon?

Within the lesson is a familiar citiation from Psalm 91. If you are not familiar with this Psalm, please look it up. It is one of the most comforting and promising passages in Scripture. Its applications can change your life and help you to see the all-presence of good. Good is the theme running all through this lesson and if we can understand the allness of God and the allness of good in His creation, we can answer that question with a confident "no".

This morning, I am working with Psalm 91:10. "There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling". This is what we all want to hear and believe in this troubled economy. No evil will happen to you. No evil whatsoever. Nothing bad. That's one side of the promise. The other half balances it perfectly. Since God is good and God fills all space, then good fills all space. Not only will no bad things happen, many good things will.

The second part of this citation is wonderful. " plague shall come near your home". What a promise for those struggling to keep up with house payments. What relief for those suffering from spring allergies. I looked up the word 'plague'. It means a widespread affliction or calamity, a sudden destructive outbreak, a cause of annoyance, a highly infectious disease. If any other these things appear to be present in your experience, here is the way to reason whether they are real or not.

Mrs. Eddy defines 'house' as 'consciousness'. So what we are defending is not only our physical home but the things we are accepting into thought. She gives Mind as a synonym for God. If we can see that God is divine Mind and that Mind is ever present, if we can see that God is good and good is ever present, we can see that we, as His image and likeness, are part of that expressing of good. We are what God is thinking about, we are what He is dwelling on. As there is only one Mind, we can know what He is knowing, the ever presence of good. He saw all that He had made and it was very good. That includes each one of His children. Nothing else is present. No one else is present. That is what is real.

Spend a little time with Psalm 91 today. I guarantee some of the verses will really resonate with you. This is prayer, spending time with God, getting to know Him as He is and to see His goodness ever present. To see yourself as the recipient of good. Prayer brings honest-to-goodness physcial change for the better. That eliminates sickness or disease. That brings an end to sin or making poor choices that do not lead to good.

You are not the victim of any form of plague. Nothing can 'plague' you. You are enveloped in good and it is your Father's good pleasure to open the windows of heaven and pour out more good than you can possibly take in.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

don't touch the hem, be wearing the garment!

As I read a familiar story in this week's Bible lesson, I was struck by an interesting idea. The woman in the story was suffering from a long-standing issue of blood. She hid herself in the throng surrounding Jesus, reasoning that if she could only touch his clothes, she would be healed. So she reached out and touched the hem of his garment. She believed that he had some power within him that healed. The hem, or blue fringe on the border of the garment, was put there by divine command, and served to remind the Jewish wearer of the special relation to God in which he stood. (See Numbers 15: 37-40) She knew, as soon as she touched him, that she was healed of that problem and the loss of blood stopped. She would have slipped away but Jesus, sensing what had happened, did not allow that. He asked who touched him. When she, fearful and trembling because what she had done broke Jewish law making those around her unclean, came forward, he made sure that she realized that it was her faith in God that had brought about the healing. And he announced this so that no one could condemn her for her actions as she was whole. If she had slipped away without knowing this, she might have been unable to get a healing next time she needed one and the Master was not around.

But what I thought about this morning was that many of us tend to identify ourselves as the person who needs the healing, the one turning to the Christ and trusting that we can make contact in some way and be healed. Think what it would be like if instead we identified ourselves with the Christ, accepting the idea that we have the same mind that was in the Master because that is the only Mind there is. We can be just as aware as he was of man's perfection and wholeness. For ourselves and for others. We are the ones wearing the garment! We are clothed in righteousness, right thinking, Truth knowing so we are always in 'our right mind', the only Mind there is.

Try looking at a familiar Bible story and ask yourself which character you are identifying with. Go about your day today imagining yourself clothed in that garment. What a concept.