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Humility and healing

For those who turn to God for healing, great comfort and hope can be found in Christ Jesus' promise, ''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.''n1

n1 John 14:12.

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Certainly, many have found inspiration and healing through prayerful study of the Master's mighty works, which included the healing of chronic and acute diseases and the reforming of sinners. Sometimes, however, we may need to remind ourselves of the equally great inspiration and healing found in the contemplation of Jesus' humbler works, his many quiet examples of selflessness. It was at the Last Supper - just prior to his promise that those who believed in him could do the works he did - that Jesus washed his disciples' feet, instructing them: ''If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.'' n2 He also told them, ''I am among you as he that serveth.'' n3n

n2 John 13:14. n3 Luke 22:27.

Have we as much desire to follow our Master's many examples of humility as we have to emulate his awe-inspiring healings? We should, if we are truly to be his disciples, if we are to heal as he did.

Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, writes, ''Jesus was compassionate, true, faithful to rebuke, ready to forgive.'' And she adds further on: ''Jesus laid down his life for mankind; what more could he do? Beloved, how much of what he did are we doing?'' n4

n4 Message to the Mother Church for 1902, p. 18.

Jesus' teachings and life afford ample proof that works of Christian healing go hand in hand with a willingness to humbly serve and faithfully love our fellowman. Willingness to serve, of course, doesn't just mean running errands for a friend in need or devoting some of our free time to volunteer work (although humility may lead us to these activities). Nor does it mean gritting our teeth and trying, perhaps unsuccessfully, to be nice to people who seem rude or demanding.

In its diviner implications, service includes a joyful readiness, even a yearning, to uphold the true concept of man as God created him - flawless, spiritual, and without blame. As we're willing to surrender a false picture of man as a diseased or unpleasant mortal, and to humbly correct that picture with the understanding that man is the image of God, as the Bible tells us, we'll see others to a greater degree as Jesus saw them - a view that heals.

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Maintaining this spiritual perception isn't some herculean task, though at times it may seem so. It's actually a very natural activity, because we're not engaged in a struggle to make a bad mortal better. Rather, we're rejoicing in the ideal spiritual man God has already created. We're realizing that this is the true nature of each individual, and therein lies healing.

If we feel at a loss as to just how to go about more humbly serving our fellowman, we can find a wonderful guide in the Sermon on the Mount. Here Jesus provided his followers with such loving, timeless directions as the Golden Rule, as well as an exhortation to abandon the vengeful, rabbinical teaching of an eye for an eye and to adopt instead the more forgiving attitude of turning the other cheek.

As we peruse the Gospels, we can see how the standards of divine service permeated Jesus' life and works. We also can better embrace them ourselves in lives marked by humility and healing, which always go hand in hand.

''Great charity and humility is necessary in this work of healing,'' Mrs. Eddy reminds us. ''The loving patience of Jesus, we must strive to emulate.'' n5

n5 Miscellaneous Writings, p. 7.

DAILY BIBLE VERSE Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. James 4:10

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