When realizing I could feel God’s love for me more than I could feel the pain racking my jaw, the pain diminished. My jaw was messed up due to a previous accident. Prayer helped but the problem persisted. I’d asked a few dentists if they could fix my jaw. Most of them were honest and said no. And, I didn’t take up the offer from the dentist who was willing to experiment on me with a procedure that might help. So, I was careful with my jaw for years. The joke is: I eat so slow that by time I’m done eating breakfast it’s time for lunch. Thankfully, the pain never overwhelmed the strong feeling I had that God was Love itself and infinite love is manifest through me.
I’d learned about God, Love, and Love’s healing ability through Christian Science as taught by Mary Baker Eddy. Through my study and practice of this spiritual Science, I’ve experienced wellness and improvement through prayer. And, more healing is to come so I remind myself that my prayer has to be guided by divine Mind, not my, or someone else’s human mind.
I’ve been aware of this statement, “If from any injury or from any cause, a Christian Scientist were seized with pain so violent that the Scientist could not mentally treat him or her self—and other Scientists had failed to relieve them—the sufferer can get temporary help. Then, when the belief of pain is quieted, the Scientist can treat his or her own case mentally. In this way we ‘test everything, hold fast to what is good.’” (21st Century Science and Health with Bible quote from I Thess. 5:21) But, for my jaw pain I never needed temporary pain relievers. The pain would subside after each mental treatment.
Ironically, over time, the mental treatment expanded to include the manifestation of not only a proper working jaw, but a proper working of Christian Science in the world. My attention was riveted on this directive from Science and Health, “Do not judge the future advancement of Christian Science by the steps already taken, unless you yourself will be condemned for failing to take the first step.”
The steps “already taken” didn’t need to pre-occupy my thoughts. I admitted many of the steps—rituals, repeating the same words—were fruitless anyway and my mind opened up to new ideas. Some of the ideas were scary, but in the end they were exhilarating and fruitful. The core project I took up was to revise and update Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. The project is still a work in progress but when did my jaw heal? I can only vaguely pinpoint a time in history. The relief was secondary to the gratitude I feel as I participate in the global sense of wellness and spiritual Science or knowledge that is alive today.