A Christian Science perspective.
Over many weeks, news reports from Thailand have shown the devastation wreaked by the worst flooding in more than half a century. The death toll has risen, and more than two-thirds of the country’s 17 provinces have been affected. Although the situation has improved and the waters are receding, Thais are facing the prospect of the ongoing impact of the damage to their homes and businesses. For many, life will never be the same.
As I watched the news reports of the floods and saw the helplessness of many individuals trying to cling to some semblance of normality, I wanted to reach out with love to bring comfort and assurance. It seemed that the enormous task of rebuilding their lives needed something more than human aid.
In turning to the Bible for assurance, I found the Psalmist’s comforting message: “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.... The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil ... The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore” (Ps. 121:1, 2, 7, 8).
In my prayers for the people of Thailand, I’ve found it helpful to know that God’s presence is always at hand to meet the human need. This preserving power is never absent. It operates through spiritual laws that bring harmony and goodness to humanity. These spiritual laws are enforced by divine wisdom and are not subject to material forces or conditions. Inspired by these natural laws of goodness, prayer becomes a powerful weapon against the unnatural onslaught of evil.
Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Monitor, highlighted the supremacy of the laws of Spirit when she wrote, “Evil is not supreme; good is not helpless; nor are the so-called laws of matter primary, and the law of Spirit secondary” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 207).
What assurance this gives to prayer.
In truth, nothing can deprive the Thais, as children of God, of their right to have complete dominion over evil in all its forms. An understanding of the supremacy of the laws of Spirit enables one to refuse to accept that individuals can become the victims of circumstances beyond their control.
Through prayer we can stand side by side with those who are rebuilding their communities and have confidence that this unified thought will bring strength to their endeavors.
Anyone who is reaching out to help through prayer is fulfilling the law of love. It reaches over oceans and can bring order and support to those who are working to establish normality for Thailand.
An article from the Bangkok Post reported that the flood had weakened the ruined temples of Ayutthaya, a World Heritage site. Volunteers arrived armed with brooms, shovels, and hoses to get rid of the dirt as the waters receded. One volunteer left her flooded home in Bangkok to join the cleanup of that important cultural site. She said it was time for people to help each other. Her unselfish action is evidence of a love that is willing to sacrifice self in order to bless others. It is clear evidence that good is not helpless but is a powerful, active force present in the thought of the Thai people.
Wishing to help and to reach out to each other in time of crisis is the fulfilling of the law of love. Christ Jesus’ teachings, embodied in his commandment to love one another, show us the way to express this love. As a selfless activity of thought, it has the power to overcome whatever evil attempts to destroy, and it restores that which is lost or damaged. Revealing the goodness that is always present, it blesses and inspires with compassion and leads to opportunities to bring healing to those in need – no matter where they are.
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