“Kingdom of heaven at hand”

In Matthew 10:7, Jesus states that “the kingdom of heaven at hand.”  This instruction from our Master to his disciples is a topic I had been studying specifically for a few weeks.  I was fortunate to find a few very good articles on this topic in past periodicals in our Reading Room.  Two of these articles were extremely inspiring.  Both entitled “Kingdom of heaven at hand”, one is by Robert Dolling Wells in the Christian Science Journal of December, 1959, and another by C.W. Chadwick in the June, 1905 Journal, page 153.  Chadwick emphasizes that Jesus’ mission was to show that salvation was to come in this present world and the distinguishing feature of that mission was to teach mankind the practical proof of the truth of this concept of “heaven at hand”– here, now.  He taught that heaven was not achieved by a state called death.  Why else would he have come to earth to urge men to “repent” and “believe the gospel”?

These ideas were ringing in my thought when I inadvertently tried to run through a glass door on my way to a tennis match.  After bounding back from the blow to my nose and forehead, and after a few confused thoughts, I regained my sense of “repentance”—changing my thinking—and re-established the “kingdom of heaven at hand”, refusing to accept that this kingdom included injury.  I began the match, but in a couple of games I began to feel neck pain.  My first thought was, “Aren’t you glad you refused to accept the idea of injury in God’s kingdom!”  Within minutes all sensation of discomfort or evidence of injury was gone.  I was very grateful.

H. C.

Prayer Heals Foot Injury

A few summers ago I was moving some debris and rocks out of the creek near our cabin in an effort to clean up an area that had the possibility of damning up. My footing was unsteady and the rocks, slippery wet. In the course of this work I inadvertently dropped a very large rock/boulder on top of my tennis shoe-clad foot. I could feel that something was not right immediately and hobbled off to the side and sat down. In those next few minutes I realized that I had a choice. I could accept this as an accident that had the potential of sidelining me for days, maybe weeks, OR claim my freedom from harm just as Jesus and his disciples did in their healing ministries.

Many times in my life, God’s loving care, direction, and supply have been made apparent in very practical ways. In one short week I was to fly to Denmark to visit with my daughter who was in a school program there. We had already made plans for an active seven-day bicycle trip around that country during her break. You might say I was very motivated to again witness God’s goodness, and fast!

Here are some of the ideas that came to me:
Healing as Jesus healed is demonstrable today, and he expected us to follow his example:

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” (John 14:12-14)

“And these signs shall follow them that believe”…(Mark 16:17)

Jesus was never impressed by sin or overwhelmed by suffering:

“And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him… And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.” (John 9:1-3,7)

My “problem” was an opportunity to be closer to God:

Rouse ye, rouse ye, face the foe,
Rise to conquer death and sin;
On with Christ to victory go,
O side with God, and win!
(Christian Science Hymnal #296)

Upon removing my shoe, the foot had already started to swell and was turning colors but I knew healing progress was occurring because I felt calm and expectant of good, and although very painful at first, it was now much less so and soon not at all.

In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures on pg. 424, Mary Baker Eddy states from experience that

“Accidents are unknown to God, or immortal Mind, and we must leave the mortal basis of belief and unite with the one Mind, in order to change the notion of chance to the proper sense of God’s unerring direction and thus bring out harmony.”

And on pg. 397,

“When an accident happens, you think or exclaim, “I am hurt!” Your thought is more powerful than your words, more powerful than the accident itself, to make the injury real. Now reverse the process. Declare that you are not hurt and understand the reason why, and you will find the ensuing good effects to be in exact proportion to your disbelief in physics, and your fidelity to divine metaphysics, confidence in God as All, which the Scriptures declare Him to be.”

I continued to listen for “angel” ideas that affirmed God’s all-goodness and worked to shut out any arguments to the contrary. In less than three days my foot was normal in size, almost back to a natural color and I had complete mobility. Consequently I had a lovely bicycle adventure in Denmark, all the sweeter knowing that God’s loving care was my only “rock”!


Painful Toe Healed through Prayer

One day my toe had what looked like an in-grown toenail.  It started hurting a lot.  I run for my high school track team, and when my toe started to prevent me from running, I turned to God and relied on His guidance.  At first, I was not feeling confident and felt under huge time pressure because I we had a track meet coming up.  So, I went back to the basics we have been learning in Sunday School, affirming that I am the perfect reflection of God and running is my special way of expressing God-like qualities.  My ability to run isn’t just because of physical characteristics; it’s a God-given talent that can’t be taken away by inharmony (the appearance of a hurting toe.)  I decided to stand up for myself being spiritual as a lawyer arguing a case would.

These truths helped me get back on the right track of thought.  The next morning the pain in my toe had lessened greatly, and I was back to running the following day.  I was able to run unhampered, and set a Personal Best record that meet.  I’m extremely grateful for this healing and I’m also glad that I’m back to expressing God through running!


About these testimonies

Most of the following experiences have been shared at our Wednesday Evening testimony meetings by members and attendees.  They are all given by folks we know, and are a sampling  of what is shared each Wednesday at our church, and other Christian Science churches.   You are warmly invited to read these, and come in person, if you can, to hear more.  Check the Sunday School page for experiences of healing and growth from some Sunday School age children.

No Harm from Fall on Rocks

This past summer I spent time at our mountain cabin. Rocks have been piled together serving as stairs to get up to the level of the porch to enter the cabin. Unbeknownst to me a young cousin, who was playing in the dirt, had spread dirt over some of the rocks. As I stepped on a slanting rock covered with dirt my foot slipped out from under me and I fell backwards on the rocks and the dirt. My first thought was, “All is well.” I have always loved the story of the Shunammite woman in II Kings in the Bible when she seeks Elisha’s help after her little boy has died. When Elisha greets her and asks how everything is, she responds, “It is well.” She understands that spiritually, in reality, all is always well. Subsequently her son is restored to life. I got up and indeed all was well. Mary Baker Eddy’s statement in Science and Health flashed through my mind, “Accidents are unknown to God…” (Pg. 424).* The little girl’s mother was quite concerned, but I was fine except for a few minor scrapes from the rocks. And there were no after effects from the fall. I’m deeply grateful for God’s ever-presence, His protection and care for each one of us. The teachings of Christian make practical the examples of God’s power and care illustrated in the Bible.

*That full sentence reads: “Accidents are unknown to God, or immortal Mind, and we must leave the mortal basis of belief and unite with the one Mind, in order to change the notion of chance to the proper sense of God’s unerring direction and thus bring out harmony.”


Lump in Breast Healed through Prayer

About 15 years ago, I had an experience that made me so grateful to be a student of Christian Science. I discovered a lump in my breast and immediately I thought, “This can be healed through prayer!” But because of my family history, I was pretty frightened of what the outcome might be if I wasn’t earnest and thorough in trusting God. (My mother had passed on under medical care with similar symptoms.) I had three small children at the time and my husband knew what was going on and agreed to be patient while I prayed for a healing rather than see a medical doctor.

I turned to the first chapter of Genesis and really studied the message that God created man (me) in His own likeness and that therefore I could not inherit anything unlike God. I enlisted the help of a Christian Science practitioner to help me keep my thoughts focused on God’s eternal goodness and the perfect health that constitutes His creation. For many weeks, I prayed every moment I could. I often woke up in the middle of the night and prayed to calm my fears. I had many wonderful insights during this time but still the condition remained and seemed to be worsening. At no time, though, was I tempted to see a doctor. I had seen so many wonderful healings through prayer in my life and my children’s lives that I looked forward to all the new ideas I would gain about God and His creation.

I was praying to understand more clearly who God is and who I am as His child. I wanted to see that because God is Love, I am always loved by Him and that Love is perfect and healthy. And because God is Principle, there could be no unhealthy growth in me. I loved what I read in Science & Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (page 91) -“Let us rid ourselves of the belief that man is separated from God, and obey only the divine Principle, Life and Love. Here is the great point of departure for all true spiritual growth.” One day it was suddenly crystal clear to me that because I am the image of God who is Spirit, my true self, my true identity, was never born into matter and I could never die out of matter. I am now, always have been and always will be spiritual.

The symptoms continued unabated even after that glimpse of my eternal nature. One day I called the practitioner to ask for help to keep my thoughts on track and he was out of town for several days. I was at a very low point and felt that I had to talk to him right away, that I couldn’t cope with the fear until he got back. Then, just as suddenly, another thought came rushing in ~ that I have a direct connection to God, that God is always with me, as the quote above told me. Several days later I realized I was not afraid anymore and that lump was gone. It never returned. I’m immensely grateful that Christian Science teaches us how to pray effectively and always to expect healing.


Getting Above Grief

Get over it! a friend advised. Rise above it another suggests. How far over the problem must we be in order to get a higher, more spiritual view? Indeed, this metaphor works when we get too close or down and dirty with a problem that has us pinned to the mat of mortal mind. But, how do we begin the ascent out of the mire of matter and into the might of spiritual Truth, uplifting us, rising higher and higher to an enlightened plane of existence?

The ascent starts with Mrs. Eddy’s discovery of the celestial principal that she named Christian Science. This enlightened divine idea that there is no matter to hold us bound to fear’s mortal kin, sin, sickness and death, was to religion what the Wright Brothers’ fledging flight was to the command of aviation. She discovered that no material principle of physics, gravity, magnetic force, strong force, material life, truth or intelligence could eclipse God, tying man to a belief in a finite world of existence in matter.

All healing begins from this lofty perspective of Being as God and man as the spiritual idea of God, expressing Life, Love and Soul. This starting point uplifts us with spiritual vision and recognizes us as reflections of the divine. In this elevated state of thought we can correctly comprehend the true identity of man. In proportion to the clarity of our understanding of the nature and essence of man as the child of God, discordant conditions are seen to be suggestions, and these yield to man’s spiritual perfection.

There remains an important question to be answered: How can we abide in this heavenly state when we feel the jagged rocks of human existence insisting upon reality of the illusions of life in matter? At this moment it is not strength of character or firmness of conviction that is needed. It is spiritual vision from above that sustains us. It is the secret place of the most high that shields us. It is the understanding of God as omnipresent that embraces us. Securely in the Love of infinite power, our illusions of being beneath or below the Kingdom of Heaven are revealed and dissolved.

When challenged by the loss of a loved one I found these truths sustaining me and leading me to higher ground safe from the winds and waves of grief and despair. The many angels that whispered God’s goodness and the joy of God’s eternal spiritual creation lifted me to the realization that Life is eternal. New views of God’s wisdom and nurturing care led me into the company of other loving members of this Christian community of spiritual thinkers. Slowly, gently, I emerged until I saw clearly where the daystar was guiding me. Many suggestions presented themselves like so many beguiling invitations to continue struggling with matter. Each day I heard the bird’s song heralding the morn and awakening me to new opportunities. Each prayer took me higher and higher into the understanding of my divine right to dwell in God’s Holy City of Love. No longer alone or afraid, doubt was vanquished, hope kindled, anguish healed, and completeness re-established. I got over it to where blessings abound.

JAK Orinda 2/2007

Welcome to our healing church.

Welcome to this blog of healings for First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Orinda, California. We believe healing is fundamental to the practice of Christian Science, and is an indication of the operation of divine law. Here is a sampling of healings experienced by members and attendees of our church. Many of these have been shared at our Wednesday evening meetings. Come visit us then to hear more live, and stay tuned here for regular postings.