Elaina Simpson, C.S.
In my own experience, I used to think that spiritual growth meant a sacrifice synonymous with growing away from others. For example, that making certain choices in terms of habits, would mean isolation or a more private life. Should I surround myself with constant talk of addictions or disease? Would others even relate to, or understand all I'm learning spiritually? Well, that's something we pray about and there isn't always a black and white answer. (We will always feel inspired in our prayer to do what's best in those situations.) And while there is nothing wrong with quietude and independence, I realized it wasn't a, these people vs. those people thing. Well, I learned in my teenaged years when I took this study more seriously, that actually this study is all about loving more. Mary Baker Eddy writes, "Wait, and love more for every hate, and fear No ill, — since God is good, and loss is gain."
(Miscellaneous Writings 1883–1896, p. 389:16) Studying this Science to me, meant that there wasn't more of a divide, but a greater understanding of our spiritual unity. I gained more patience, more compassion, and more understanding from what I was studying. In spirituality, it was better to expect that others could grasp these ideas, otherwise I would be simultaneously expecting that I could not understand them, too. And in spirituality, I saw that there is no room for even the most minute suggestion of self-righteousness. Naturally, conversations became more uplifted. But as I studied, the talk of additions or disease didn't stop, it actually increased because people would call asking for help regarding some initial talk of those ailments. I'm not saying this discussion is ever something that is on-going or necessary, but it was a lesson of humility. Also, friends of mine would ask about how they could pray for themselves regarding various challenges, and these discussions brought us closer. I found that healers, as we all are, do not retreat from the Goliath, but run towards it in efforts to heal and grow spiritually. Sure, quietude or going into your "closet" as Christ Jesus said is so important. I love this time, and I've found it is important to dedicate ample time to this. And, in harmony with this, we also learn that, "The habitual struggle to be always good is unceasing prayer." (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy, p. 4:12–13) Unceasing prayer, means without ceasing. Like tuning into music on a radio, we tune into Love no matter where we are, in the grocery store or in a meeting with a good friend. We really see that we are all one united family, where we are all at one with divine Love. Here are some verses that are helpful to consider: "...Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples."
(Matthew 9:10) "Never breathe an immoral atmosphere, unless in the attempt to purify it."
(Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy, p. 452:14–15) __ I don't often write about myself but I should add one unrelated footnote: In response to some messages asking if I am okay or where I went, - Yes indeed I am great! And I am here! :) At the beginning of the pandemic, I decided I would post Bible verses and spiritual ideas once a week on here until it felt right to decrease frequency. Now, I hope to post at least once a month and will post when it feels right for my own practice. In addition to that- Taking an already full schedule and making it fuller, I was recently appointed to a role working collaboratively with the Mother Church, that works in harmony with my practice. I am still writing a lot, still mostly for the periodicals normally, but post frequency on here has decreased just a bit, so I can have more time to pray about the content. But, my gratitude for this space continues. Thank you! :) Have a great evening,
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