Watching Point 44
From 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter
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44 — WATCH lest you be like the lion who saved the life of a mouse, and then scorned the possibility of the mouse turning around and helping him. Yet, when the lion was caught and weary with struggling to escape from his bonds, the mouse gnawed them through. The mouse might represent the feminine prayer that trusts God blindly, and in meekness and humility, feels that, whether one can think scientifically or not, Love is taking care of one. It is the prayer of the Christian that Mrs. Eddy voiced, when the reporters asked her if she had any physician beside God, “Indeed I have not! His everlasting arms are around me and support me, and that is enough.”
The lion represents the Science of Christian Science, or the masculine prayer — the consciousness of spiritual supremacy gained through scientific understanding. In contrast to the latter, the former might seem a feeble sense — a relic of old theology to be scorned by the student; yet at times the student needs the Christian, or feminine approach to God. In fact what we are working for in Science is an absolute trust in God, as the goal of all our efforts. Otherwise why did Mrs. Eddy write the following? “Have trust in the one Father and Mother God, without fear or doubt . . . Do not fear the physical — just ask for light and goodness. We must talk more closely with God, bring Him nearer to us, more like the old style of praying. We must feel and know that God is what we live in, like the atmosphere or sunshine all about us. We must rest more in God . . . Give up all to God, ask for your daily bread, enough for today. A child with its mother does not ask all the time for food and clothing, for tomorrow, or next week, but runs along happily and trusts its mother’s care — so must we do.”
The lion saved the mouse; Christian Science has saved the old Christian prayer. In turn this mouse, or childlike sense of trusting, or floating, may save the tired swimmer when he is too exhausted to swim farther.
Edward A. Kimball once said to Gilbert Carpenter, Sr., that, while he was able to attain a great sense of man’s power when equipped by God, he never seemed able to gain that simple childlike trust, that rests without fear in the bosom of God. Perhaps he would have remained with us longer, had he been able to do this.
The Bible records that the Children of Israel made progress during the day under the guidance of the pillar of cloud, or Science. In the night-time of weariness and fear, when thought became confused and tired, they needed the pillar of fire, the light of Christianity, which represents a childlike rest and trust in Truth, in which there is no spiritual progress made and no scientific and powerful affirmations of truth; but from which one gains needed refreshment and rest. Thus does the mouse save the lion. The student should never scorn the Christian, or feminine attitude toward God, which is represented by the angel Gabriel (Science and Health, page 567) in contrast to Michael who fights the holy wars. One might deem it a relic of old theology, yet in reality it is the goal of Science. It is vitally needed in times of mental weariness or confusion, and also when a student is in danger of believing that he is the one doing the mighty works. Once a splendid student made a shipwreck of his career. When Mrs. Eddy was asked why, she replied with tears in her eyes, “The dear boy believed that he did it.” At such times it is a saving grace for one to turn to God in absolute humility and say with the simple meekness of the Master, “Father-Mother, of myself I can do nothing. Thou doest the works, and I trust in Thee as a little child.”