Love That Overflows
SOMETIMES it seems hard enough making sure we've taken care of our own obligations. So who has enough time or love left for helping others?The "me first attitude is easy to slip into in our hectic society, but it isn't a good basis for Christian healing. Spiritual healing requires--and fosters--a deep and all-encompassing love for mankind. As we practice it, we become more willing to abandon self-centered living so that we can bless others. This is truly following Christ Jesus, who lived for the purpose of showing mankind how to work out their own salvation. Many times the New Testament Gospels speak of Jesus as having compassion on or loving the individuals he helped. This was not merely feeling sympathy or pity for them. Jesus' care went deeper. Instead of just enabling people to cope a little better with their problems, he healed them. He gave them a glimpse of their actual spiritual identity as God's beloved children. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, was Christ Jesus' follower. After experiencing the healing power of Christ herself, she began to see that there was a Christly science, or law of health and harmony, that all man-kind could understand and demonstrate. Each of us can respond to the Biblical command, found in Philippians, "Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure. Mrs. Eddy devoted her life to giving this discovery of the healing and saving Christ, Truth, to mankind. In Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, she explains, "The prayer that reforms the sinner and heals the sick is an absolute faith that all things are possible to God,--a spiritual understanding of Him, an unselfed love. I was struck as I read this one day by the demand for "unselfed love. I realized that it is not enough just to want to heal our own situations. To be truly effective in healing, we must cultivate a universal love for our fellowman. What we know of God's love for us must overflow to meet the world's needs as well. Such willingness to love unselfishly brings abundant blessings. I was able to see this one night when our daughter had a friend to visit. My husband and I were talking about some serious family difficulties when our daughter came in to tell us that her friend was not feeling well. I knew that she expected me to come and help her friend, who was also a student in the Christian Science Sunday School. I did go to the child and began to comfort her by reminding her of some of the spiritual truths she was learning in Sunday School. But I was feeling so burdened with m y own problems that I wondered if my prayer would be of much help to her right then. I felt that perhaps I should take her home to her own family and let them take care of her. But as I was thinking this out, I remembered a line from one of Mrs. Eddy's hymns in the Christian Science Hymnal: "His arm encircles me, and mine, and all. I was filled with a deep love that overflowed to include this child and everyone, everywhere. I caught a glimpse of God taking care of His entire creation. I hugged my young friend and shared this certainty of God's love for her. She was comforted; soon she was well and ready to go back to sleep. She slept the entire night and played happily at our home all the next day. The family problems also came into new perspective, and we were able to see how to solve the difficulties. How deeply we are all loved by God! Nothing can separate us from this love. And as we feel the overflowing nature of divine Love, God, it will be natural for us to help and heal others, as well.