A guest post written by Rahla Lindsey from La Cañada Flintridge, California
“I have to tell you what just happened!”
My interest was piqued. The woman I was talking to has been my friend and neighbor for more than fifty years, and we shared just about everything – husband stories, recipes, children’s scrapes, and moments of neighborhood gossip. But most of all, we loved to talk about the people in the Bible, the ones we called “our friends.”
We aren’t members of the same denomination, but we are both Christians, and so there was that common bond. Recently she had undergone shoulder replacement surgery, which had not progressed well, and I wanted to help her by being a good listener. Because she was in terrible pain, she would call for comfort and prayer. Yes, she knew she was God’s daughter, and she thought she understood that pain wasn’t part of that – but to her it seemed so real. Her doctors wanted to re-do everything and she was sure she did not want that. But what did she want?
Actually, what do we all want? What do we all need? Good question.
My thought turned to a loved statement from Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. “What we most need is the prayer of fervent desire for growth in grace, expressed in patience, meekness, love, and good deeds.” Well, here was someone who fervently desired more than just being comfortable. She was seeking health and healing. So we discussed how to find that healing through growth in grace. She expressed the traditional theological idea that grace is unmerited divine assistance, and I responded, “What do you mean unmerited? If we are God’s perfect, whole ideas, then we merit and deserve all the good that God has for us.”
We didn’t have more time to talk then – she was on her way to her Bible study. So I mentally put her in God’s loving arms, and off she want.
The next morning I received her phone call. She told me I was the only one who would really understand what happened. The previous evening she had sat stoically through the Bible study, trying to follow the discussion of the Gospel of Luke. As the group was wrapping up, she quietly asked everyone there if they would pray for her. And then everyone left for home. Because nothing immediately changed physically for her, she had the thought that maybe she wasn’t God’s loved daughter after all.
But when she awakened, she was absolutely pain free with unimpeded movement. She was filled with joy at the truth of her spiritual identity as God’s whole daughter.
So here’s that question again: What do we all need? We need the quiet confidence in our perfection as children of God. In this way blessings and grace are understood to be merited and wholeness and health are expressed.