You may be thinking “What an odd question to ask! Of course we want to heal! Who wouldn’t want to heal?”
Well, I think that we have to be honest here and really examine our thinking. Are we ready and willing to be receptive to the call for help as Jesus was when a woman touched the hem of his garment as he moved through the midst of a huge crowd? (Luke 8:43-48).
Such readiness, willingness, and alertness should be so important to every Christian Scientist—to every Christian.
Mary Baker Eddy wrote in Science and Health (page 450):
The Christian Scientist has enlisted to lessen sin, disease, and death…
I remember when I first read that statement back in 1990 while attending a service at The Mother Church in Boston for the first time. I had been studying Christian Science off and on for the better portion of a year when I saw those words on a pew card. As I read them, I thought that this was: a) quite a demand, and b) one that I inherently felt was essential for not only my own salvation, but for that of the world.
Twenty-two years later and I still find that this imperative continues to speak to me.
Eddy wrote (Science and Health, p. 496):
Ask yourself: Am I living the life that approaches the supreme good? Am I demonstrating the healing power of Truth and Love?
I find that I need to ask myself those questions regularly. Hopefully, you do, too.
Are we really striving to live that life of Love—the life that would be ready to heal anyone in need of healing that comes into our experience? Are we prepared to offer prayer to our neighbor—to our literal neighbor, or, for instance, those that we meet in a restaurant, at our child’s soccer game, in the grocery store, or those that walk in our church door?
Are we willing to be that light on the hill that Jesus referred to or have we hidden our light under a bushel? (Matthew 5:13, 14) When the Master commanded his followers to “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16), are we recognizing that this was not an option—that it in fact demands our obedience?
Or have we mistakenly been duped by the carnal mind into thinking that letting our light shine is somehow a passive activity that we just do by our presence without having to engage others? That if we just are nice and think good thoughts, that somehow this will magically transform the world and heal those who are crying for help?
Isn’t that kind of thinking a form of secular humanism or even New Age philosophy? We can’t afford to buy into those views. Too much is at stake.
And we certainly can’t be made to fall into the trap of thinking that Christian Science is only about our own salvation and health. Doing so would be the antithesis of its very purpose. Why? Because it would be an act of selfishness—one that would attempt to turn Science and Health into just one among a myriad of self-help books out there instead of what it really is—the cure for all of the ills and sin that plague humanity.
If we truly have “enlisted to lessen sin, disease, and death,” then shouldn’t healing permeate all of our activities—including the reason and purpose for Church?
Lots of questions to be sure, but they ultimately still boil down to this one: To heal or not to heal? I think the answer should be clear!