By Jim Bencivenga
Just wanted to share how I’ve found two spiritiual approaches to this virus issue.
The 1st: I have relied more deeply than ever on Jesus' instruction, his welcome command, his natural greeting: “Be not afraid.”
Few are unaware of his words. Christian Scientists know he explicitly meant we cannot be afraid because there is no fear in God so there is no fear in God's reflection, His beloved child. And that applies to everyone. It actually protects me from the trap of only praying for my well being and not including all mankind. Jesus didn’t say, “don’t be afraid here in Israel, but in America, well sorry, be afraid.” What a comforting spiritual fact and healing truth to rely on.
The 2nd: The two great commandments are really all that we can do. Love God with all our heart and mind and soul. And love our neighbor as ourself. There’s a right order to these commandments and CS has always had it right in that God is all, and thus having a Principle to stand on to then Love our neighbor.
The virus belief would have us fear our neighbor, would have us believe that the actual commandment of God to love our neighbor as ourself could injure, adversely affect, even kill us. It’s actually the biggest lie my thought has ever confronted. It presented itself to me when my brother and his wife came to Florida last month, snowbirds. With the outbreak of the virus they stopped wanting me and my wife to visit them regardless of what human precautions they were taking and we were taking out of wisdom not to inadvertently spread the disease. Some fear was involved. We know we love them and embrace them in God's love. All fear vanishes.
How ennobling and inspiring to witness health providers and first repsonders practicing the 2nd great commandment according to their highest vision. How much more to do so from the shelter and dominon of the Christ Science. Mrs. Eddy writes, "Constant toil, deprivations, exposures, and all untoward conditions ,if without sin, can be experienced without suffering. Whatever it is your duty to do you can do without harm to yourself." SH 385:15 An accompanying marginal note reads: "Honest toil has no penalty."