DURING a late meeting the snow falling outside distracted me from the speaker. My friends warned me that it looked like a real white-knuckle commute.
When I began my drive home, the roads were white, and tiny icy balls of sleet pelleted my windshield. I began to think about my experiences of driving on ice. Icy roads demand smooth driving, with gradual changes and no abrupt movement. Of course, the tense, fearful, ``white-knuckle'' driving my friends referred to is just the opposite of what's needed. I had been learning to rely more trustingly on God's care and control during difficult winter driving during the past few months. As a Christian Scientist, I am finding it is natural to acknowledge God's presence and constant love for me wherever I am, whatever the conditions of my environment.
This acknowledgment is prayer. It is turning to God with trust that He is always in control, is always supporting, directing, and loving His children--and that means you and me. Prayer includes the consistent, faithful recognition of God's allness and of man's oneness with Him that Christ Jesus taught his followers. The Master pointed out: ``Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. . . . Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows'' (Matthew 10:29, 31). With this prayerful acknowledgment I have been able to loosen my tense grip on the steering wheel and drive calmly, smoothly, and safely even when road conditions are icy.
I have been able to ``loosen my grip'' and become more relaxed in other aspects of my life, as well, and experience the calm dominion that stems from knowing God's control over His universe. During that recent commute I thought about the meeting I had just left. The announcement of a corporate downsizing had thrown a cold blanket of fear over many employees. People expressed anxiety and concern, feeling that this important part of their lives was now out of control, almost as though their careers were sliding on ice and they were frantically gripping a steering wheel that didn't respond. I immediately affirmed with gratitude that I--and every one of us--could trust God's care and direction in all ways.
Like many people today, I have been involved in nonstop change in my work. Even when change feels like driving on ice, with no way humanly to gain security or control, God is in control. Whatever picture economic indicators or organizational strategies present, God's plan for his sons and daughters is ever-unfolding good. And that plan includes uninterrupted progress.
As I prayed, I actively acknowledged God's power and specifically denied any influences that would claim to oppose God's law. Nothing can prevent each individual from fulfilling God's purpose and seeing His unlimited goodness. Factors such as age or location are not determiners of supply or success. God's law ensures fulfillment for every individual. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, affirms God's control in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: ``All is under the control of the one Mind, even God'' (p. 544).
Whether or not you have been part of a merger or a downsizing, or lost your job because of a restructuring, you can feel God's care and control in your life today. You can confidently expect the uninterrupted unfoldment of God's plan for you. I have gone through all of these changes. Each time God has directed me to better things than I had known before. Each change has brought new ways to bless others and experience blessing myself. We are never sliding on ice. Our lives are never out of control, because God is always in control.