As summer slips away again, I’m reminded of how walking along the seashore listening to the continuous sound of crashing surf can clear our head and allow fresh perspectives.
In the local Walgreens parking lot, I had a beach-like moment and found an answer. A CVS store had opened up on the other end of the same block and I puzzled over how these stores were both thriving while selling identical merchandise.
As I stood listening to waves of traffic, the answer hit me: drugs. They are drug stores. There’s an insatiable demand for prescription and non-prescription medication. People’s search for health is relentless. Everyone needs to be healthy.
But are drugs the only way?
Reports say a lot of us don’t think so. In addition to mega-dollars spent on drug-based health care, Americans also spend almost $34 billion each year out of their own pockets on alternative treatments. Even 3 out of 4 U.S. health care workers use some form of complementary or alternative medicine (CAM) to stay healthy.
Prayer is no longer listed as part of CAM but the statistics still show an increasing percentage of people pray about their health.
I’m part of those statistics. Several decades ago, I ran out of drug and even alternative treatment options. I used to suffer with incurable asthma. Conventional treatments, over the counter and prescription meds and everything from acupuncture to zinc only gave some temporary relief.
What finally healed me was a mental change. It came from ideas in a book I was reading, Science and Health with key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy. A friend gave me the book in response to my exasperation about my condition. I wasn’t looking for religion, just healing.
The book explains the nature of God, using terms such as Life and Love and Spirit as synonyms for God. It helped me understand what scripture (which I had not yet read) means when it says that man is made in the likeness of God, Spirit: that man is not material but is actually spiritual – that I am spiritual.
These basic ideas about God and man really resonated with me. Pondering them gave me a new sense of myself and the concept that I was a spiritual being became clearer and clearer.
This sentence had a profound impact: “Become conscious for a single moment that Life and intelligence are purely spiritual, – neither in nor of matter, – and the body will then utter no complaints.”
The more I let these ideas into my consciousness, the more powerful they were – overwhelming what was bothering me like mighty ocean waves. The asthma ended up being literally swept out of my experience and I was cured of it.
Since then I’ve learned that focusing on spiritual ideas is prayer. I still pray that way for my health needs and help others to do it too.
I found freedom not only from asthma, but from the belief that drugs or other physical treatments were my only hope.