While out walking one day, I noticed a stand of crab apple trees in the distance. To my surprise, several branches in one of the trees appeared to be on fire. Curious, I walked closer to the tree, where I discovered a thin, dull, gray ribbon twisted in the branches. Flames appeared to be dancing on the ribbon. Looking around for an explanation, I saw the sun was low in the sky, and its light was directly hitting the ribbon. The sunlight, reflected on the ribbon, created flickering flares of light that looked like flames.
Deeply impressed by the power of that light to transform the ribbon, I thought about the spiritual implications of what I’d seen. This idea from Mary Baker Eddy’s book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” guided my reasoning: “Man, in the likeness of his Maker, reflects the central light of being, the invisible God” (p. 305). To me, the flares of light reflected on the ribbon illustrate the powerful effect of this relationship with God. Just as the sunlight caused the dull ribbon to manifest an extraordinary effect, God, the actuating light of our being, illuminates us, revealing our spiritual capabilities.
This idea appealed to me as a possible solution to a demanding situation at work. I was involved in a project that required intense work for several days each month. At these times, the workload was so heavy it seemed impossible to complete the work on time. The stress was unbearable.
After my encounter with the crab apple tree, I resolved to welcome God’s transforming light into my work experience. As the work piled up, I mentally rejected the false concept of myself as a limited personality stretched way beyond my capabilities and affirmed my connection with God, the all-powerful source of unlimited intelligence and ability.
I frequently stopped to acknowledge that the light of God was revealing its expansive power in me in the same way the sunlight had revealed the reflective qualities of the lowly ribbon. Soon, new ideas of how to work more efficiently came to mind, and the inspiration I needed to keep the project fresh flowed smoothly. Continuing to pray in the months that followed, I met deadlines without stress, and I even enjoyed the challenge of doing the work.
Jesus’ healing works, described in the Bible, demonstrate the power of God to transform lives. This active relationship between God and man is called the Christ. St. Paul, a follower of Jesus who confronted daunting challenges in his ministry, said, “Christ gives me the strength to face anything” (Philippians 4:13, Contemporary English Version). The light of the Christ is ever available for us to draw on. Welcome God’s transforming light into your day, and discover the extraordinary abilities the Christ will reveal.
God, who first ordered
‘light to shine in darkness,'
has flooded our hearts with his light.
II Corinthians 4:6, J.B. Phillips