Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Wilderness in Bloom ; A Christian Science Perspective on Daily Life

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Wilderness in Bloom ; A Christian Science Perspective on Daily Life

Article excerpt

One of the things I love about prayer is the way it can bring a new idea zinging into thought. Not just any idea, but one that meets a need. I was a young newlywed when that first happened to me.

One day I opened my thought to God without any agenda. I just wanted to think about God, to hear what He might be saying. Right away the idea came to consider the concept of "wilderness." And though I didn't know where it would lead, I was willing to ponder it.

A wilderness can be an inhospitable, even forbidding, place - barren, dry, lifeless. I asked myself, If I were in an uninhabitable desert place, what would I want to do? Leave! was my first thought. And if I saw no way out? The next idea came quickly: Plant it.

Suddenly this spiritual search had meaning for me.

Just as planting and caring for a wilderness bring transformation, a mental "planting" process could radically change my thought - and, intuition told me, my experience.

The Bible is eloquent about God's promises in wilderness places. For example, "The desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing" (Isa. 35:1, 2).

As I pondered passages like this, a spiritual sense of beauty filled my heart.

This prayer was like watching a garden come into bloom after a long, cold winter. Qualities such as fullness, color, variety, coolness, and refreshment were "planted" in my consciousness and replaced the desert description I'd been considering.

And there was more to come. After a couple of days, an acquaintance asked if we needed any furniture. In fact, our apartment was extremely bare, containing only a chair, a bed, and a lamp. This new friend told me about someone who was selling all her belongings, and asked if I'd like a preview. …

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