Boston Marathon 2013 – Moving beyond sadness

On the day the joy and happiness and unity and celebration of Boston Marathon 2013 was ambushed by bombs, my heart and my prayers went out to the people of my town of Boston and to all those visiting from afar for this wonderful gathering.

raindrops-650x250Photo by Silent Shot / cc by 2.0

On the day the joy and happiness and unity and celebration of Boston Marathon 2013 was ambushed by bombs, my heart and my prayers went out to the people of my town of Boston and to all those visiting from afar for this wonderful gathering.

It was a shocking and horrible scene.  I had to pray to find a semblance of peace for myself.  I felt good about my prayers and they gave me some sense of strength.

The next day I had to get up very early and travel into Boston to work, right near where the attack happened.  I awoke that morning only to have a great sense of sadness descend upon me.  When I was brushing my teeth, I felt like crying.  As my wife and I drove into the city the sadness became more palpable.  I felt as if I was feeling the sadness of the city, the sadness of joy turning into sorrow.

At the same time I felt that yesterday’s prayer was working in me, that deep down there was a peace.  The surface was sadness but in the depths of thought and feeling there was a peace.  It was an interesting place to be mentally and I didn’t fight it but rather just stepped back and observed my feelings a bit,  feeling I guess that the Spirit of God was going to win out without my forcing it.  The sadness gave me a deep sense of compassion that didn’t feel all bad.  I felt as though in this very meek state it was easier to feel God, to feel divine Love’s presence somehow.  I felt effortless prayer, full of love, and I mean a deep deep feeling of love going out to all, even to the perpetrators, feeling somehow that they had been used and needed comfort too.

It actually developed into a beautiful feeling, maybe just a hint of the compassion that Jesus often felt according to the scriptures.  It made my prayer stronger and yet I wasn’t trying to pray, wasn’t saying words or even trying to think spiritual thoughts in an organized way.  I was just listening and feeling what felt like divine Love working in me and through me to embrace everyone, to comfort those that mourn, including myself.   And oddly enough, when the sadness felt strongest so did the love I felt for everyone, the love I felt embraced by.  And I got clearer than I’ve ever been that I need to love so much more, in every instance — that we all do.  That is the only thing that will take away, utterly destroy the hatred, the anger, the frustration that would cause someone to do something like this.

This feeling of love and compassion and hope and comfort I’m sure was and is the Christ.  I understand the Christ to be the power of God — the godliness that works in us, the light that enlightens us.  In this experience I felt it stronger than usual.  Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and wrote about the Science of Christ defined Christ this way in one instance,

“Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness.” (Science and Health 332:9-11)

I have to say, that is what I felt and still feel to some degree in regard to this trying time.  It is all very fresh and I’m still working my way through it but I feel there are spiritual forces at work for all of us that are stronger than the seeming forces of sadness and dread.

This Christ, our true divine nature, is not just working in me any more than it was just working in Jesus.  I know it is universal and is working in each one now and always to bring peace to our sadness, comfort to us that mourn,  binding up our broken hearts, and healing broken or damaged bodies.

I’m reminded of these two verses from a church hymn, referring to Christ the Savior.

He comes to bless thee on his wings of healing;

To banish pain, and wipe all tears away;

He comes anew, to humble hearts revealing

The mounting footsteps of the upward way.

 

He comes to give thee joy for desolation,

Beauty for ashes of the vanished years;

For every tear to bring full compensation,

To give thee confidence for all thy fears.

Boston Marathon 2013…was God absent?

That’s a very tough question. The news and everything we see would say, yes, definitely. And what’s more, evil is present and very active.  But one man more than anyone

That’s a very tough question. The news and everything we see would say, yes, definitely. And what’s more, evil is present and very active.  But one man more than anyone else proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that evil does not have the power or presence it appears to have. That man, of course, was Christ Jesus.

Think with me for a minute about how he proved that God is not absent and that His power of good prevails right in the middle of evil.  Jesus healed incurable diseases, stilled a destructive storm, and fed tons of people when there were few resources, certainly not enough to feed all the people. He brought complete peace and healing to people who were possessed with devils.  And he raised the dying and dead to life, including himself.

I’ve often wondered what the point was of all this.  Mary Baker Eddy, a world renowned religious leader and radical Christian thinker helps me see that Jesus was showing us the love of God that’s always present with us, even right where evil appears to be present and powerful.  He was showing us a reality - or the reality - a power, a presence always at hand, always available, no matter what evil situation we encounter.  Jesus proved evil to be powerless when God’s almighty, everpresent power was understandingly relied on.

Jesus viewed things through his innate God-given, Christly spiritual sense and told us we could do the same, through our own innate spiritual sense.  He was the Wayshower, showing us the way to think and pray.  He proved that there is hope and peace and good and healing right where evil appears to have power and presence.

What happened yesterday at the Boston Marathon will not make me lose hope in God.  I am holding even tighter to the reality through prayer that God is here and now to bring healing (physical cure) to anyone injured, hope to those who feel hopeless, living waters of blessing to those who need shelter from the fear of a changed world. God is here bringing peace to those who might feel hate or anger and transformation to those who would be used to do evil acts.  I pray to know that God, who is everlasting Life, maintains the eternal life of His creation, and is providing the balm of comfort, peace and strength to those hearts who have lost loved ones.

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  (Romans 8:35, 37-39)

Boston Marathon bombing

As I write this, I still have two friends I haven’t been able to track down. They had planned to watch the end of today’s Boston Marathon from near the finish

As I write this, I still have two friends I haven’t been able to track down. They had planned to watch the end of today’s Boston Marathon from near the finish line. So when I heard the sirens, then saw reports of two explosions near the end of the 26.2-mile race, it was hard not to panic.

What could I do? I knew I could pray. Prayer, for me, isn’t just about getting peace
in the comfort and safety of my own home. It’s about seeing something beyond
the smoke and chaos and fear that would try to engulf us. It’s about finding some
conviction, however small at first, that God is omnipotent. That Life is omnipotent.
That Love, healing, comforting Love, can never leave us.

So I pray. The first words that spring to mind are from a song based on Isaiah 43:2:

“Be not afraid, for I have redeemed you;
Be not afraid, I have called you by name.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
When you pass through the floods, they will not sweep o’er you;
When you walk through the fire, you will not be consumed.
You are mine. You are precious in my sight.” 1

Can I really not be afraid right now? That seems almost impossible. But the last line
of that verse keeps echoing: “You are mine. You are precious in my sight.”

What does it mean to be God’s? I think of the protection that implies. I think of
being sheltered and embraced. I think of God knowing each of us—each of His dear
ones. I think of Him as conceiving us in wholeness, holding us in wholeness. Never
seeing anything but our wholeness—our precious, intact being, uninterrupted and
untouched. I think of the irresistible Love that impels each of us to adopt this view,
and to hold to it.

This might seem like a leap, especially given the photos and video coming out of
Boston. But I force myself to turn away from these mesmerizing images. Instead, I
hold our individual and collective preciousness in my thoughts. My own healings
have shown me that it’s this steadfast commitment to good, to God, that erases fear,
stops the clamor of dark thoughts, and does bring healing. It’s what reveals the truth
of this profound statement by Mary Baker Eddy: “Nothing can interfere with the
harmony of being nor end the existence of man in Science.” 2

Whatever evil tries to call itself—destruction, terrorism, randomness, chaos—the
fact is that it cannot interfere with the Being who is God. It can’t touch or overwhelm
or consume God’s precious ones. It is powerless in the face of almighty Love.

These are my prayers for my friends, and for everyone in the city of Boston today.
Please share your own prayers in the comments below.

1 “Be Not Afraid” by Craig Courtney. 2 Science and Health, p. 427.

Boston Marathon 2013 – Is God absent?

This is a very tough question because our fleshly reality, our material sense of things would say, yes definitely — and furthermore, evil is very present and active.  There was one man who walked this earth and lived among the evils of this world and yet proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that evil does not have the power or presence it appears to have. The man I’m talking about was Christ Jesus. Think with me for a minute about what he demonstrated to prove that God is not absent and His power of good prevails in the midst of seeming evil.  Jesus healed incurable fleshly ills and diseases, stilled powerful destructive storms, fed multitudes of people when it appeared there was no place to get enough food for everyone. He brought complete peace and healing to people who were possessed with devils.  And he raised the dying and dead to life, including himself. What was the point of all this?  I’ve asked myself that many times.  Mary Baker Eddy, a world renowned religious leader and radical Christian thinker whose works I study, help me to see that he was showing us the love of God present with us, right where it appears evil is present and powerful.  It has occurred to me that he was showing us a reality – or the reality – a power, a presence always at hand, always available, no matter what situation evil would try to throw our way.  He proved evil powerless, when God’s almighty, everpresent power was understandingly appealed to or known. Jesus viewed things through his innate God given, Christly spiritual sense and told us we could do the same, through our own innate spiritual or Christly sense.  He was the Wayshower, showing us the way to think and pray.  He showed us that there is hope and peace and good and healing right where evil appears to have power and presence. What happened today at the Boston Marathon will not make me lose hope in God who is Love as the Bible refers to Him/Her.  I am holding even stronger to the reality through prayer that God is here and now to bring healing to anyone injured, hope to those who feel hopeless, living waters of blessing to those who need refreshment from the evil ways that seem apparent in this world, peace to those who might feel hate or anger, and transformation to those who would be used to do evil acts.  I pray to know that a God who is everlasting Life, manifests, maintains the eternal life of His creation, and is providing the balm of comfort, peace and strength to those hearts who have lost loved ones. “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  (Romans 8:35, 37-39) Check out other comments regarding this blog published on time4thinkers.com.

This is a very tough question because our fleshly reality, our material sense of things would say, yes definitely — and furthermore, evil is very present and active.  There was one man who walked this earth and lived among the evils of this world and yet proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that evil does not have the power or presence it appears to have. The man I’m talking about was Christ Jesus.

Think with me for a minute about what he demonstrated to prove that God is not absent and His power of good prevails in the midst of seeming evil.  Jesus healed incurable fleshly ills and diseases, stilled powerful destructive storms, fed multitudes of people when it appeared there was no place to get enough food for everyone. He brought complete peace and healing to people who were possessed with devils.  And he raised the dying and dead to life, including himself.

What was the point of all this?  I’ve asked myself that many times.  Mary Baker Eddy, a world renowned religious leader and radical Christian thinker whose works I study, help me to see that he was showing us the love of God present with us, right where it appears evil is present and powerful.  It has occurred to me that he was showing us a reality – or the reality – a power, a presence always at hand, always available, no matter what situation evil would try to throw our way.  He proved evil powerless, when God’s almighty, everpresent power was understandingly appealed to or known.

Jesus viewed things through his innate God given, Christly spiritual sense and told us we could do the same, through our own innate spiritual or Christly sense.  He was the Wayshower, showing us the way to think and pray.  He showed us that there is hope and peace and good and healing right where evil appears to have power and presence.

What happened today at the Boston Marathon will not make me lose hope in God who is Love as the Bible refers to Him/Her.  I am holding even stronger to the reality through prayer that God is here and now to bring healing to anyone injured, hope to those who feel hopeless, living waters of blessing to those who need refreshment from the evil ways that seem apparent in this world, peace to those who might feel hate or anger, and transformation to those who would be used to do evil acts.  I pray to know that a God who is everlasting Life, manifests, maintains the eternal life of His creation, and is providing the balm of comfort, peace and strength to those hearts who have lost loved ones.

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  (Romans 8:35, 37-39)

Check out other comments regarding this blog published on time4thinkers.com.