One very chilly morning last winter I was out walking and praying, and I had just come out of the woods when a lady drove up in her car and asked if I had seen her dog. She described the dog to me, but I hadn’t seen any dogs that morning.
Her dog had escaped with two other dogs from her fenced in yard the day before. The other two dogs had come home, but this one dog had not returned. He had been outside in the cold winter forest overnight. I assured her with absolute certainty that her dog would be back. She gave me a list of reasons why she thought that might not happen. But, again, I told her not to worry; her dog was safe! This message didn’t come from me; it was beyond what I could have personally known, but I was absolutely sure it was true. It was an angel message, a message from divine Love, of assurance and comfort.
She told me her dog’s name, Romeo, and generally where she lived, which was about 1 mile from where we were. Then she drove off.
As she drove away, I asked myself, “What is the basis of my absolute trust that she will see her dog again? What is the foundation of any assurance that good is omnipotent and present? What gave me the confidence to share my trust with her?” She had not asked for prayer, so these questions were just a jumping off point for me to clarify in my own thought what I know to be true in Christian Science.
I started with God. I knew that God, divine Mind, is all-in-all and ever-present. I knew that divine Mind knows everything and everyone, and so knows where her dog is. I knew that all God’s creatures are harmless creations of divine Love, so this dog, this spiritual idea of God, could not be in danger from supposititiously aggressive forest animals. I knew that all God’s creatures are indestructible, spiritual beings, so safety is assured for each one. I knew that this lady and her dog were each centered in divine Life’s being, so we could fully expect that they would see each other there. I knew that the ever-present Christ is here, and that the Christ speaks directly to consciousness. So, the Way-shower, the Christ, was speaking to this dog’s consciousness showing him the way out of the forest. The Christ was directing me and this lady too with right ideas to help bring about a reunion. I knew that her dear dog lives every moment in the kingdom of heaven and therefore was never outside of his heavenly home and blessed reach of the Comforter.
Just as the lady’s car was disappearing out of sight a dog, her dog, bounded out of the woods only to see the tail lights of her car vanish around a corner. Suddenly the dog looked dejected and sat down just a few feet from me. I went over to him, but he wasn’t wearing a collar, so I couldn’t hold him. And when I approached, he became quite a bouncy dog again; he started jumping up and down and running around in circles. He seemed so happy to see a person even if I wasn’t his master.
Then I tried to step in and use human reasoning for finding a solution to get the dog home, but I didn’t have the cell phone number or name of the lady. After having thought through several possible scenarios, I determined that I was not able to get the dog to his house or my house. I had to turn the case back over to God. I said right out loud, “OK God, I know You’re on duty. I have no idea what to do, but I know You know, and I’m willing to follow Your direction.”
Just at that moment, the lady’s car came back out of a side road, that she had turned down, which is a “no thru street”. I yelled “Stop! Stop!” as loud as I could, and jumped up and down waving my arms. Because it was hunting season, I was wearing bright orange clothing for my walk in the woods that morning, so it was easy to see me. The lady saw me and stopped, opened her car door, jumped out, and yelled “Romeo! Oh, Romeo!”. And her dog ran to her as fast as he could. They had a lovely warm embrace. Romeo got in the car and the lady waved and thanked me. I was so grateful for the opportunity to be a witness of the Christ in action.
As Romeo rode away toward his house, I rejoiced that God beholds His whole creation as “very good” (Gen 1:31) and that we all can rely on that view ourselves. With this reliance comes the assurance of God’s plan of good, and the ability to share that view to bless our neighbors. Mrs. Eddy explains this phenomenon like this, “Acquaintance with the Science of being enables us to commune more largely with the divine Mind, to foresee and foretell events which concern the universal welfare, to be divinely inspired, — yea, to reach the range of fetterless Mind.” (SH 84:14)
When we feel the absolute assurance of good, we know it is founded on the basis of God’s all-ness, goodness, and the ever-present Christ speaking God’s divine message to us and blessing all those on whom our thoughts rest.