Today’s guest blog post is from my manager Phil Davis, the worldwide Manager of Committees on Publication and a regular contributor to the WashingtonPost.com “On Faith” column. Phil recently responded to Jon Stewart’s Washington DC “rally to restore sanity,” billed as promoting “reason.” Below, he gives his take on the questions, “Are ‘reason’ and ‘sanity’ the opposite of religious belief? Is taking religion out of the political debate the answer for restoring reason? Or do we need more faith?”
Some time ago I came to an epiphany about making decisions in my life–that God does not give us only limited multiple choice answers. I was facing a situation where it looked like there were only a few options–A, B, C or none of the above. None of them looked that good. But through prayer I began to see many other options. One possibility became obvious as the right one to take and it solved the problem.
I discovered something that day which I’ve repeated many times since. That prayer reveals how God works in unlimited possibilities. And that there is always a way forward even if I don’t see it at first.
So is this kind of prayer just inspiration, asking God for help while I wait for Him to do something? No. My prayer was not just pleading for God to help me, but actively affirming His wisdom at work in my life and everyone else’s. So, for me it involves reasoning–spiritual reasoning. And that entails listening as well as a willingness and humility to be directed by a higher, divine intelligence.
Spiritual reasoning also allows me to consider options I would not normally consider. It is not just taking one path in life because my church teachings tell me to. I’ve always found it so strange that critics of Christian Science accuse its members of having no choice–of blindly following its teachings. My faith has actually taught me to be a critical thinker–to question, probe and challenge the premise of every assertion with the need to see how practical and beneficial it really is in daily life. In other words, if it is really God’s truth, then prove it! Christian Science has taught me to inductively accept the whole of my faith, not because of specific doctrines, but because of specific examples, including physical healings.
And that is where the science in Christian Science comes in. Statements representing laws of God that can be repeatedly proved right here on earth.
Does it seem strange to apply scientific reasoning in religion? Well, there are a whole lot of people who say they are here today and living healthy lives because of that application. I’m one of them.
Thanks, Phil. For those unacquainted with our guest blogger, spirituality.com provides a brief introduction:
“Phil Davis has been a professional Christian Science practitioner, available to help others through prayer, for over 20 years. He is also one of about 200 authorized Christian Science teachers in the world. Phil is also the Manager of the Committees on Publication for The First Church of Christ, Scientist, Boston. In this role he directs the work of a world-wide team of individuals who work with local media and their governments to correct published false statements or omissions on Christian Science. “
You can read more of Phil’s thoughts on his new blog “Life and Prayer on the Cutting Edge.”