There's no doubt that people yearn to feel the comfort and warmth of Christ during the Christmas season.
To many, the term “Christ” might be seen as a synonym for Jesus. But through studying Christian Science, I’ve come to understand that Jesus was Christ Jesus because he most perfectly exemplified the Christ-spirit that can also be felt in the hearts and thoughts of us all as God’s messages to us. Whatever form they take in our experience, when we perceive these messages about how God’s great love guides us, and keeps us spiritual and whole, we find they are just the right thoughts to meet our needs.
For instance, just a day before Christmas one year, a friend of mine became very ill. She was feeling a sense of pressure to get better quickly because she was with family and friends, and felt she didn’t want to ruin things. She turned to God in prayer and was comforted, but was still very sick in the evening. She renewed her prayers, opening her thought to the Christ, and that’s when she felt in her heart a very beautiful message from God: that in her true being she already was well, not because she wanted to please everyone, but simply because we are all the spiritual, perfect creations of God (see Genesis 1:26, 27). Embracing that Christly message quickly cured her.
Christ Jesus said, “To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth” (John 18:37). Looking at Jesus’ ministry, we can see the healing power of the Christ. And this healing, saving Christ is still present, right now. On Page 333 of her book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, says, “Throughout all generations both before and after the Christian era, the Christ, as the spiritual idea, – the reflection of God, – has come with some measure of power and grace to all prepared to receive Christ, Truth.”
In light of that, what best prepares people like you and me to receive the angel messages – the inspiration – of the Christ? In a parable, Jesus compared what happens to seeds that fall on dry, rocky soil versus seeds that fall on fertile, good soil (see Luke 8:4-15). The seeds represent God’s Word, or the Christ. The soil symbolizes the quality of thought of those who hear this Word. Jesus said, “That on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.”
What helpful guidance that is! Our inherent receptivity to the appearing of Christ to our consciousness is enhanced by a good and honest heart, expressed in humility and faithfulness. Intentionally striving to express these qualities helps us hear and respond to God’s Christly messages. And in order to bring them to life in myself more tangibly, I have decided that between now and Christmas, I will daily choose one quality – such as goodness, honesty, humility, or faithfulness – to focus on, knowing that to the degree that I love and express such qualities, I will find myself more receptive to God’s healing Word. I invite you to join me in this activity! As we progress, let’s be patient with ourselves, while also aiming to be steady and consistent.
Referring to the divine Science of the Christ, Science and Health states, “The effect of this Science is to stir the human mind to a change of base, on which it may yield to the harmony of the divine Mind” (p. 162). When our thought is in tune with the divine Mind, God, we are changed; we experience a deeper sense of peace and harmony.
This involves a humble willingness to get on our mental knees, to have our thought transformed by Christ. But it’s a joy to experience how the Christ heals us and washes us clean. As we are receptive to Christ, how will we be led? What new view will we see? What fresh healing idea will we better understand? What new sense of safety and security will we feel?
As we pray for our world this Christmas season, let’s behold how the Christ is universally available, leading us to the truth about God and about what we all are as His loved, spiritual children.