Many individuals comment on the power of love to make us well. One of my favorite observations comes from Dr. Larry Dossey, M.D., who wrote in his book, Healing Words, “If scientists suddenly discovered a drug that was as powerful as love in creating health, it would be heralded as a medical breakthrough and marketed overnight – especially if it had as few side effects and was as inexpensive as love” (p. 109).
Christian healer, Mary Baker Eddy, also found that love was extremely valuable in making individuals well. One of her students once quoted her as saying this in response to a question about healing through prayer, “Just live love – be it – love, love, love. Do not know anything but Love. Be all love. There is nothing else. That will do the work. It will heal everything;…Be nothing but love” (We Knew Mary Baker Eddy, pps. 49-50).
Eddy also knew that human love, while important, was variable and inconsistent. She looked for something deeper than human love – and found it in The Bible – in the book of First John – where it states, “God is Love.” She found the invariable, deep love for God that restores, redeems, forgives unconditionally, and heals disease. She found this more reliable and powerful than just human love, and used Love (with a capital L – see again her above quotation) as a synonym for God.
Her Bible study led her to write the book Science and Health with key to the Scriptures, which she wrote to help others understand this Love that heals.
She wrote, “’God is Love.’ More than this we cannot ask, higher we cannot look, farther we cannot go” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 6). She knew that it takes devotion, and sometimes hard work, to keep one’s thought filled with this love of God. The world can mightily test one’s faithfulness to Love. It certainly tested Mary Baker Eddy (it is appropriate to share this blog since this is National Women’s History Month). At one time she was faced with a lawsuit that challenged her integrity. A group of newspaper reporters were sent to her community of Concord, New Hampshire, to see if something sensational could be written about her.
Eddy gave the responsibility for talking to the reporters to a member of her staff, Irving C. Tomlinson. In a book he wrote about his years of service to her, he wrote, “The chief man among
this group, representing a big New York newspaper, was known as a particularly hard-boiled reporter and a steady drinker. He had been afflicted for some years with a cancerous growth of the throat, which was extremely painful and at times overwhelmed him completely.
“One evening as they were all sitting in his room at the Eagle Hotel, drinking and smoking, bored with their stay, this man was suffering with his throat; he had lost his voice entirely and was unable to speak a word. Mrs. Eddy had asked me to call these men by telephone and inform them that it was impossible for her to see them. But she cautioned me at the same time, ‘Be sure to ask for the leading man and speak directly to him.’”
Tomlinson was told that the head man could not speak to him. Eddy – who characteristically embraced even her enemies in the unchanging and universal love of God – had told Tomlinson to insist on speaking to this man – that if he could not speak, at least he could listen. He did – and he was healed.
Tomlinson continued, “the healing stirred these men….[They] had believed Mrs. Eddy to be only a humbug, and the reputed healings of Christian Science to be a great hoax. Their whole position was overthrown by this proof offered before their very eyes. They packed their bags and left.
“Some years later a relative of this man called at my office in Boston, and gave me the following message: ‘My uncle requested me to see you and to tell you that in his last days he turned to Christian Science, and he knew that he owed a debt of gratitude to Mrs. Eddy for his healing in Concord (Twelve Years with Mary Baker Eddy, pps. 63-65).
Love. It is a vital ingredient in defeating illness.
©2013 Christian Science Committee on Publication for Illinois